GolfTube: The Luke Donald argument, landslides, and Monty

Jonathan Wall

Sizing up the TV coverage from the Barclays Scottish Open ... and away we go.

Luke Donald still doesn't have a major championship in his trophy case, but his win on Sunday at the Scottish Open certainly solidified his spot atop the world golf ranking for the foreseeable future.

"Luke Donald will have his critics in certain corners, I supposed, that will still say he hasn't won a major, like Lee Westwood," Dougie Donnelly said. "Do you think this will silence any of the doubters?"

A Scottish Open victory silence the doubters? Surely, Donnelly, a Scot, said that in jest, since the main reason people continue to knock the world rankings is because the top two players in the world are currently major-less.

But as Jay Townsend pointed out, maybe that's not the point of the world rankings.

"Dougie, you're Scottish. Don't you think this is a major?" Townsend joked. "That argument has been going on for awhile, with Westwood when he was number one, and now with Donald. I think the world ranking are all about awarding good, consistent play over a long period of time, and that's exactly what you got out of Westwood, and what you're getting out of Luke."

It's hard to disagree with Townsend's assessment. The system is all about awarding the most consistent players in the game, and if those players just so happen to not have a major championship victory, so be it.

"You can't fault the world number one," he continued, "because he's excelling in the system that's there. You have to say hats off because he's played so well so often over the last year."

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Washed away

It's never a good thing when the weather is the most talked-about item during a marquee tournament, but like the U.S. Women's Open, the Scottish Open had to deal with being second fiddle to weather that ran roughshod on Castle Stuart Golf Links.

Three inches of rain during Saturday's third round washed out the entire day down the drain, cutting the tournament to only 54 holes, and turning Saturday's coverage on the Golf Channel into a replay of the rain-delayed second round.

Luckily, the cameras had some incredible opening shots that kept eyeballs on the opening 10 minutes of the coverage, as the network showed a couple of massive landslides, as well as parts of the course that were underwater.

"I'm not sure I've ever seen this much damage to a golf course in such a short period of time," Warren Humphreys said. "It really has been awful ... it's a depressing picture at the moment."

It was a depressing picture for almost the entire week. Luckily, the Golf Channel was able to show an entire final round broadcast without a single delay. Hopefully this isn't a sign of things to come, after tournament officials moved the event from Loch Lomond to Castle Stuart.

Dougie Donnelly and Warren Humphreys, like a couple of over-protective parents, tried their best to paint a happy picture of Castle Stuart, despite the weather that rocked the the tournament.

"This is the most stunning place. It's an absolute heartbreak for so many people that worked so hard on this great golf course to see the weather give us such an awful day yesterday," Humphreys said. "It's a shame players couldn't see the tournament for four rounds at its absolute peak."

Scotland Tourism Board

With the John Deere Classic going on this week on the PGA Tour, the Scottish Open missed out on a number of American players that decided to stay on the other side of the pond, instead of heading over the week prior to the British Open.

While the weather at Castle Stuart probably won't draw players to the course next year, that didn't stop the Golf Channel's Dougie Donnelly from putting on his tourism cap and giving his best pitch for PGA Tour players currently sitting on the fence.

"I think a lot of the American players, particularly, who played here have throughly enjoyed it," Donnelly said. "They'll go back to the PGA Tour and tell other players this is where you should be the week before the Open."

We'll see about that, Dougie.

No Monty at the Open Championship

Despite his best efforts, Colin Montgomerie won't be in the British Open field next week at Royal St. George's. It will end a streak of 21 consecutive appearance for the Scot. Like most golf fans, Dennis Hutchinson noted that the Open Championship will be a different place without Monty.

"It's strange to think he won't be there," Dennis Hutchinson said. "He's been part of it for so many years, you just expect to see him in field at the Open Championship. But as you mentioned, he just didn't do enough to earn a spot."