Tiger Woods, golfing world react to passing of Ivor Robson, voice of The Open Championship

The golfing world lost one of the greatest voices ever known.

Ivor Robson, the starter for The Open Championship for forty years, passed away peacefully at the age of 83 on Tuesday.

Originally from Moffat, the small, south-central Scottish town in Dumfries and Galloway, Robson first worked at The Open in 1975. Tom Watson won his first of five Claret Jugs at Carnoustie that year.

His distinctive voice announced the opening tee shots of 18,995 players at golf’s oldest major, according to the BBC.

“As an official starter at The Open for over 40 years, his voice was instantly recognizable and synonymous with the Championship for players and millions of golf fans worldwide,” said Martin Slumbers, the CEO of the R&A, on Tuesday.

“He was popular and well respected among all golfers who played in The Open, and I know that they will share in our sadness at this news.”

Robson retired following the 2015 Open Championship at St. Andrews, where 2023 Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson claimed his second major championship.

Funny enough, Robson’s career was bookended by playoffs.

Watson defeated Jack Newton of Australia by one stroke in an 18-hole playoff in 1975. Johnson outlasted Marc Leishman and Louis Oosthuizen in a four-hole, sudden-death playoff forty years later.

He seemingly had a sense for the dramatics, as his distinctive voice made it aware to all that The Open was here. It sent tingles down players’ spines to hear Robson call their voice on the first tee.

Hence why so many, including Tiger Woods, paid tribute to Robson upon hearing of his passing:

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.

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