British Open 2011: Amateur Tom Lewis Shares the Early Lead

John BurkeContributor IJuly 14, 2011

SANDWICH, ENGLAND - JULY 14:  Amateur Tom Lewis of England acknowledges the crowd on the 18th green during the first round of The 140th Open Championship at Royal St George's on July 14, 2011 in Sandwich, England.  (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images

The name Tom must be lucky.

When Tom Lewis first saw his pairing for the 2011 British Open, he was thrilled.

And why wouldn't he be?

After all, Lewis was playing with Tom Watson, the man for which he is named. Playing with the five time Open champion probably would have been enough for Lewis. At only 20 years of age and still an amateur, it would be hard to expect much out of his opening round.

Then Lewis opened with a five-under-par 65, to shoot the lowest score ever recorded by an amateur in the history of the tournament. Not only did he set that record, but in the process he became the first amateur to lead the tournament since 1968. 

Riding the back of a hot putter, Lewis one-putted his first eight greens. That helped him make the turn at three-under, at point from which Lewis never looked back. 

There are still three rounds to be played at the 2011 British Open. 

It will be an arduous 54 holes for the 20-year-old from Britain. But for a player who was mainly concerned with making the cut, a first round share of the lead is very impressive.

With Tiger Woods out of the picture, it is nice to see another story developing. For all of you dreamers out there, Lewis would be the youngest winner of the Open since Young Tom Morris won in 1868.

Maybe there is something in the name after all?