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Page last updated at 12:16 GMT, Wednesday, 15 July 2009 13:16 UK

Baker relishing links challenge

Peter Baker
Baker is one of the late starters on Thursday afternoon

Peter Baker is optimistic that he can use the conditions to his advantage in the Open Championship at Turnberry.

The Codsall golfer, 41, came through qualifying to reach the main draw, and says he relishes the challenge provided by British links courses.

Baker said: "There's a few more shots you've got to play and obviously the elements play a big part.

"It is a different form of golf, a form I really like. I love links golf so I look forward to it."

Baker goes out just after 1530 BST on Thursday afternoon, alongside South African Thomas Aiken and Sweden's Thomas Hedblom, and admits he is just happy to be in the prestigious competition.

Keep out of that rough - anything on the fairways is a good thing this week

Codsall golfer Peter Baker

"It's something I strive for every year - I make a big effort to try and play it because it's the best tournament in the world," he added.

"This year I had a bit of a slow start really, I had a big break in the winter then it took me five or six weeks to get back into it.

"But the last month has been a lot better, so if I can carry a bit of that form into this week that'd be great."

The practice rounds at Turnberry have shown the course to be unforgiving if you miss the fairways, and Baker is conscious of the need to keep out of the rough.

"It's brutal - obviously the winner will definitely be the guy who keeps it on the fairways the most," noted the 1993 Ryder Cup star.

"Keep out of that rough, anything on the fairways is a good thing this week, and you can take it from there."

Baker has been a European tour professional since 1986 recording three victories - the last of those in the Scandinavian Open of 1993.

More recently he enjoyed success at the Mauritius Open two years ago, and this year he came first in the Credit Suisse Challenge on golf's Challenger Tour.

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