Casey in the hunt for claret jug

By Associated PressJuly 18, 2010, 2:51 am

Open 125wST. ANDREWS, Scotland – Go ahead, pile the hopes of all of England on Paul Casey’s shoulders. The rest of the United Kingdom, too. He doesn’t mind.

A year after a rib muscle forced him to miss three months of the season, Casey is in contention to become the first Englishman to win the British Open since 1992. His bogey-free 67 Saturday afternoon matched the low round of the day, and pulled him within four strokes of Louis Oosthuizen.

“Sitting here right now, I’m ecstatic,” said Casey, who couldn’t stop grinning. “You know, even right now, occasionally I feel the muscles in the ribs. In no way do they affect my golf. But it’s a small reminder that quite often you take for granted a lot of things, and nothing is better than an Open Championship at the home of golf.

“So I’m loving it. I’m loving the fact I’m playing absolutely great golf, and I’m four shots behind Louis.”

While conditions at the Old Course were challenging on moving day, there were birdies to be had for those who played it right. Casey played the front nine at 5-under, and then parred out to earn a spot in the final pairing Sunday. Martin Kaymer is in third place after a 68, and Henrik Stenson matched Casey’s 67 to climb into a tie for fourth.

Former British Open champ Mark Calcavecchia also made a move – in the wrong direction.

Trying to become the third straight member of the senior set to steal the show at the British Open, the 50-year-old instead opened with three straight bogeys. He then had a quadruple-bogey nine – yes, a nine – after being assessed two penalties worth three shots over a lost ball.

Calcavecchia rallied with three straight birdies on the back nine, but he’s now at 2 under for the tournament, 13 strokes behind Oosthuizen.

“It was unfortunate for Calc there, and he had a tough few holes,” said Oosthuizen, his playing partner. “He started off rough and he came back nicely, made very nice birdies there in a run there on the back nine.”

While Americans win their national championship with regularity, the British Open is often a source of consternation for the British. For all the great young golfers they’ve produced the last two decades – Casey, Justin Rose, Ian Poulter, to name a few – no Englishman has won the Open since Nick Faldo at Muirfield.

The stats aren’t much better when you throw it open to the rest of the U.K., with Scotland’s Paul Lawrie in 1999 the last Brit to hoist the claret jug.

But the British arrived at St. Andrews brimming with confidence, thanks to their recent run of success on both sides of the Atlantic. Golfers from Britain and Northern Ireland won four PGA Tour events in five weeks, including Graeme McDowell’s surprise victory at the U.S. Open, and seven players in the top 20 hail from the U.K.

That it’s Casey, not Lee Westwood or Rose, near the top of the leaderboard might be the only surprise.

Casey had climbed to No. 3 in the world last year before straining the rib muscle a week before Turnberry. He tried to let it heal with rest and treatment, but withdrew early in the first round at Firestone and then again at the PGA Championship. He would not play a full round again until the World Match Play Championship in October, where he lost all three of his matches.

Casey had a couple of top-10 finishes earlier this year, but it was more time off that really turned things around for him coming into St. Andrews. After Pebble Beach and the BMW International, he actually took a vacation. In the summer, the height of golf season.

He returned the first week of July at the charity J.P. McManus Invitational Pro-Am in Ireland.

“I will admit I had no clue where the golf ball was going to go at J.P., but I didn’t care because I was relaxed. Bit of a tan, nice and chilled out, and, you know, just enjoyed myself on the golf course,” Casey said. “And I feel fresh and feel ready to play good golf. I feel ready to work. I’ve got a good attitude. And I’m really looking forward to the rest of the year, which I wasn’t four or five weeks ago.

“And whatever happens tomorrow happens. But already I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”

Catching Oosthuizen might be tough considering how the South African is playing. He’s had four bogeys in the first three rounds, and just one – on the first hole – on Saturday. But Casey is eager to try.

Though he grew up playing links golf – and did it quite well, getting four victories without a loss in Britain and Ireland’s 1999 Walker Cup win – he got away from it after he moved to the United States to attend Arizona State. The U.S. game requires higher ball flight, and Casey found himself not trusting his instincts when he played in Britain.

He has just two top-20 finishes at the British Open; his best result was a tie for seventh at Royal Birkdale in 2008.

“It’s in there,” he said. “I know how to do it, and I love doing it.”

And if it brings him – and England – a British Open title, so much the better.

“I desperately want to be a major champion, and I think I have the ability and I think I’m working hard enough,” Casey said. “But that doesn’t guarantee anything, as we know. So we will see.”

Getty Images

Rose leads halted Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.


Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'


President at the Presidents Cup


Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump


Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73


Cart on the green


Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green


Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open


Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National


Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open


Trump golf properties

Vandalism

Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses

Finances


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers


Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover


Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up


Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.