Ailing Creamer has eyes on LPGA money title

By Associated PressNovember 22, 2008, 5:00 pm
2006 ADT ChampionshipWEST PALM BEACH, Fla. ' Paula Creamer has played well enough this week to have a chance of winning the LPGAs money title.
 
That is, if she can get out of the hospital Sunday morning.
 
Hours after becoming one of eight qualifiers for the final round of the ADT Championship and its $1 million first-place prize Saturday, Creamer ' who has been sick since Wednesday night ' was admitted to Bethesda Memorial Hospital in Boynton Beach because of severe abdominal distress.
 
She will stay there overnight, and a decision as to whether or not she plays (Sundays) round will be made early (Sunday) morning, said Jay Burton, the senior vice president of IMG, which represents Creamer.
 
Creamer said after her round Saturday that she was planning to play, but wanted to go have a CT scan to rule out appendicitis, something many of her symptoms pointed to, according to the medical staff who evaluated her at the Trump International course.
 
If I was going to withdraw, it would have been earlier, Creamer said.
 
Provided she can play, Creamer will have a chance to be the first American to win the LPGAs season money crown in 15 years. All eight players will start tied at par when they embark on an 18-hole shootout for the $1 million winners prize, and if Creamer cannot play, itll be a seven-woman field.
 
Money title or not, I want to win this event, Creamer said.
 
She began experiencing sharp stomach pains Wednesday night and they havent subsided much since. Creamer cut her usual 90-minute warmup to a half-hour to conserve energy, hasnt been able to eat solid food for three days and nibbled on dry toast and bagels during her round Saturday.
 
At times during the third round, Creamer would hit a shot, then double over in pain.
 
The best position for me is hunched over, Creamer said. Im not a big complainer, but one more day ' thats what I keep telling myself.
 
If Creamer wins the season-ending event thatll probably be best remembered as Annika Sorenstams presumed finale on the LPGA, not only will she nudge Lorena Ochoa by $41,457 for the title, shell become the first U.S.-born money champion since Betsy King in 1993.
 
Ochoa earned $8,000 this week, but didnt qualify for the weekend rounds. A victory would push Creamer just over $2.8 million for 2008; King won $595,992 when she took the cash crown.
 
Suzann Pettersen put together the best round Saturday with a 4-under 68, shaking off a triple-bogey at the par-4 fourth with almost flawless golf the rest of the way. Pettersen got back to even by the seventh, then ensured her spot in Sundays field with four straight birdies on holes 13-16.
 
Considering she made two birdies in the first two rounds combined, an eight-birdie Saturday surely did oodles for her confidence.
 
I still think the best golf for me this week is ahead of me, said Pettersen, who has three second-place finishes in 2008 but no wins, after claiming five titles a year ago.
 
Angela Stanford shot a 69, one shot back of Pettersen, to earn her spot in Sundays dash for the cash, which was displayed in a clear plastic box, with 10,000 bills ' all $100s ' neatly bundled. Creamer and Seon Hwa Lee shot 70s, and Ji-Yai Shin and Jeong Jang were another shot back.
 
A three-way playoff decided the final two spots: Karrie Webb and Eun-Hee Jee advanced when Sun Young Yoo three-putted the par-3 17th.
 
Webb and Creamer are the only players to reach all three final rounds of the ADT since it adopted the eight-player, erase-the-previous-scores Sunday format in 2006. Neither has finished better than third.
 
If course knowledge counts for anything, itll help Webb. Shes a regular at Trump International, albeit under far different conditions.
 
Its almost, sometimes, I think a disadvantage that I play here so much, because it doesnt play the way it does when I play it the other 99 percent of the time, Webb said.
 
Katherine Hull, the leader after the first and second rounds, started with four bogeys in her first six holes Saturday. If this was a normal week, shed have been tied for fifth at that point, but instead was quickly dropping well out of contention to even play Sunday.
 
Hull chipped in for birdie at the par-3 11th, but wound up shooting 79 after going 4 over on her final three holes.
 
Stiff wind made a tough course even harder. Karen Stupples putted four times for triple-bogey at the par-4 16th, then tossed her ball into the water out of frustration on her way to a 77. In-Kyung Kim shot 80, and Helen Alfredsson made triple-bogey at 18 to shoot 74, which meant par at the finishing hole would have sent her to Sunday.
 
Theyd all gladly trade places with Creamer, her abdominal distress notwithstanding. She was planning to have tests to rule out appendicitis, and was optimistic of simply keeping down some food and getting a bit of rest. The lure of a $1 million payday and a money title might prove the best medicine.
 
All I know is Im definitely not feeling my best, Creamer said before going to the hospital. But well try to tough it out.
 
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  • Trump playing 'quickly' with Tiger, DJ

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 24, 2017, 1:33 pm

    Tiger Woods is scheduled to make his return to competition next week at his Hero World Challenge. But first, a (quick) round with the President.

    President Donald Trump tweeted on Friday that he was going to play at Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Fla., alongside Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

    Woods and President Trump previously played last December. Trump, who, according to trumpgolfcount.com has played 75 rounds since taking over the presidency, has also played over the last year with Rory McIlroy, Ernie Els and Hideki Matsuyama.

    Chawrasia leads major champs in Hong Kong

    By Associated PressNovember 24, 2017, 1:19 pm

    HONG KONG – S.S.P. Chawrasia extended his lead at the Hong Kong Open to two strokes Friday after a 4-under 66 in the second round.

    Chawrasia, who had led by one at the Hong Kong Golf Club, is at 9-under 131 overall and took as much as a five-stroke lead at one point.

    ''Yesterday I was putting very well, and today, also I make some up and downs. I saved a couple of short putts. That's why I think I'm leading by two shots most probably,'' the Indian said. ''The next two days, I'm just looking forward.''


    Full-field scores from the UBS Hong Kong Open


    Thomas Aiken (64) is second, followed by Alexander Bjork (66), Joakim Lagergren (66), Poom Saksansin (68) and Julian Suri (67) at 5 under 135.

    Aiken's round was the lowest of the tournament.

    ''It is tough out there. The greens are really firm. You've got to hit the fairway,'' Aiken said. ''If you get above the holes, putts can get away from you.''

    Justin Rose (69) had six birdies, but three bogeys and a double-bogey at the par 3 12th kept him at 3 under for the tournament.

    Masters champion Sergio Garcia (71), playing for the first time in Hong Kong, was at even par, as was defending champion Sam Brazel (71) and 2014 champion Scott Hend (67).

    ''I have to play better,'' Garcia said. ''The way I felt like I played, it's difficult. This kind of course, you need to play well to shoot a good score.''

    Day (68) just one back at Australian Open

    By Nick MentaNovember 24, 2017, 6:40 am

    Jason Day posted a second-round 68 to move himself just one off the lead held by Lucas Herbert through two rounds at the Emirates Australian Open. Here’s where things stand after 36 holes in Sydney.

    Leaderboard: Herbert (-9), Day (-8), Cameron Davis (-7), Anthony Quayle (-6), Matt Jones (-4), Cameron Smith (-4), Nick Cullen (-4), Richard Green (-4)

    What it means: Day is in search of his first worldwide victory of 2017. The former world No. 1 last visited the winner’s circle in May 2016, when he won The Players at TPC Sawgrass. A win this week would close out a difficult year for the Aussie who struggled with his game while also helping his mother in her battle with cancer. Day’s last victory on his native soil came in 2013, when he partnered with Adam Scott to win the World Cup of Golf for Australia at Royal Melbourne.


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Round of the day: Herbert followed an opening 67 with a round of 66 to vault himself into the lead at The Australian Golf Club. He made six birdies, including four on his second nine, against a lone bogey to take the outright lead. The 22-year-old, who held the lead at this event last year and captured low-amateur honors in 2014, is coming off a runner-up finish at the NSW Open Championship, which boosted him from 714th to 429th in the Official World Golf Ranking. His 5-under score was matched by Dale Brandt-Richards and Josh Cabban.

    Best of the rest: Matt Jones, who won this event over Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott two years ago, turned in 4-under 67. Jones is best known to American audiences for his playoff victory at the 2014 Shell Houston Open and for holding the 36-hole lead at the 2015 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits, which was eventually won by Day. Jones will start the weekend five shots off the lead, at 4 under par.

    Biggest disappointment: Spieth has a lot of work to do this weekend if he expects to be in the title picture for the fourth year in a row. Rounds of 70-71 have him eight shots behind the lead held by Herbert. Spieth made a birdie and a bogey on each side Friday to turn in level par. The reigning champion golfer of the year has finished first, second and first at this event over the last three years.

    Storyline to watch this weekend: The Australian Open is the first event of the 2018 Open Qualifying Series. The leading three players who finish in the top 10 and who are not otherwise exempt will receive invites into next summer’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

    Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

    Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

    In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

    "It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

    “Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

    “That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

    Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.