It does, however, seem like we won't be getting a fifth Claret Jug for the Irish triad of McIlroy, Harrington and Lowry. McIlroy battled to finish at even par, Lowry finished one stroke further back, while Padraig Harrington had a challenging day at the office at shot a three over par round.
Brian Harman's excellent start to Friday's round - he sits on -8 as we write - means unless they come out on fire, it will be very difficult for the Irish golfers to compete with him.
Padraig Harrington and Talor Gooch tension
One intriguing moment on Harrington's opening round has caused a bit of online speculation, for which Harrington felt the need to clary on Twitter last night after the round.
Brian Keogh was following the Irish golfers around Royal Liverpool for the Irish Independent and he reported on an exchange between Harrington and playing partner Talor Gooch.
Gooch plays on the LIV Tour and is probably best known on this island for a little dig at Shane Lowry after Gooch's 4 Aces side won a LIV event last autumn.
On the fifth hole, Gooch moved his feet before Harrington finished his tee shot and it clearly distracted the two-time Open winner. Keogh says Harrington has a word with Gooch afterwards.
The news was picked up by a few golf accounts on Twitter, who tried escalate the incident into something bigger than it was. Harrington took to Twitter to explain that Gooch had apologised for moving his feet.
There’s nothing to see here. Unfortunately for me I tilt my head up in my takeaway which gives me a rather wide field of vision. I got distracted by an early walk, which Taylor was very apologetic about and it never happened again.
— Padraig Harrington (@padraig_h) July 20, 2023
So there you go. Harrington defused the situation before more Liv/PGA tensions could be made manifest online. Harrington and Gooch will begin their second round at 14.15 on Friday, along with Seamus Power.