Birdies, eagles, albatrosses, the odd duck hook? Golf is a game of feathered friends and fiends that can have you cooing like a pigeon on a massage table one minute and squawking in agony like a pirate's parrot that’s just been tickled by Captain Hook the next.

The R&A’s resident peregrine falcons are on duty at Royal St George’s this week to help stave off the menace of pesky seagulls so that the masses can munch on their £10.50 fish and chips in peace.

Being a man of learned ornithology, the diarist engaged in an erudite blether with said bird’s handler. “Are you aware of Falco Peregrinus?,” he asked. “Aye, I think he shot a 76 to miss the cut,” came my response of authority.


*The narrow roads and lanes around quaint old Sandwich have been as clogged as some of the golf writers’ arteries.

The diarist took two hours to travel just eight miles the other day as we got stuck in the kind of motoring mayhem that would make the Wacky Races look like a dignified state funeral cortege.

Amid the carnage, Sergio Garcia had to get a police escort through the jam-packed chaos to make sure he made his tee-time.

The nearest the diarist will come to such treatment from the local constabulary will be an escort off the premises after a lively lunch.


*In an effort to eradicate single use plastic, Open organisers provide players, caddies and media with specially designed Bluewater refillable bottles. “The bottle weds top functional performance with cool aesthetics and a lifetime warranty,” says the promotional bumf.

It sounds like the diarist’s swanky new laptop. Well, it did until I spilled the contents of the bloomin’ Bluewater bottle on it.