Edoardo Molinari wins Johnnie Walker with birdie stretch

By Associated PressAugust 29, 2010, 8:38 pm

2009 European TourGLENEAGLES, Scotland – Edoardo Molinari birdied the final three holes at Gleneagles on Sunday to win the Johnnie Walker Championship and secure a place on Europe’s Ryder Cup team.

The 29-year-old Italian received a wild card pick from European captain Colin Montgomerie, a few hours after shooting a 1-under 71 during the final round to beat Brett Rumford by a shot.

“I was under a lot of pressure out there because I did not know if second place was going to be good enough to impress Colin Montgomerie with the wild-card situation,” Molinari said. “So the win was very important to me.”

Molinari finished at 10-under 278. Overnight leader Francesco Molinari – Edoardo’s brother – shot 75 to share third with Wales’ Jamie Donaldson and Miguel Angel Jimenez of Spain. Jimenez also secured a Ryder Cup spot, as did Sweden’s Peter Hanson, who finished tied for 19th.

“My caddie told me on the 16th tee that with a couple of birdies I could still win and I feel fantastic to have been able to do that,” said Molinari, who trailed Rumford by two shots at the time, only to birdie the next two holes to draw even.

Rumford did not expect to be in contention for his third European Tour victory but, a pair of closing birdies left him with a 2-under 70 and the clubhouse lead.

“It was never going to be a day of low scoring,” he said. “The wind was very strong out on the course and very difficult to read.”

The decision by Jimenez to seek a late entry to play at Gleneagles rather than attend his nephew’s wedding in Malaga paid off.

He started the tournament in the ninth and last automatic qualifying place to play in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor. An even-par 72, which left him at 7 under, earned him a share of third place and his fourth match against the United States team.

“It means a lot to me,” the 46-year-old Jimenez said. “It means more as you get older and now to be playing alongside the likes of Martin Kaymer and Rory McIlroy will mean I am playing with a third generation.

“My nephew and my family understood about the wedding – they told me I had to what I had to do, and that’s what I did.”

On a day of high winds and high scoring, Hanson also secured his Ryder Cup debut with a 73 and a 2 under finish. He had recently climbed into automatic qualifying position by winning the Czech Open.

“I was very tired coming here to Scotland and I have been battling not to think about making the team,” Hanson said. “But now I am going to celebrate.”

Getty Images

Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

"I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

"I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

"Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

Getty Images

Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

“I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

“I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


Masters victory


Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


Green jacket tour

Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


Man of the people


Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


Growing family

Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


Departure from TaylorMade


Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


Squashed beef with Paddy

Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


Victory at Valderrama


Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

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