Montgomerie trying to keep British Open streak alive

By Associated PressJune 3, 2011, 4:42 pm

NEWPORT, Wales – After posting his worst halfway score in Europe in 20 years, Colin Montgomerie’s major mission now is to protect a proud qualifying record for the Open Championship that stretches a little longer.

Montgomerie has played in the British Open for 21 straight years since making his debut in 1990, but that streak will be broken unless he can navigate through a qualifying event at Sunningdale on Monday for the tournament at Royal St. George’s in July.

His first top-10 finish in almost three years after coming joint seventh at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth last week raised hopes of a sustained return to form.

However, he slumped to 15 over and last place in the Wales Open on Friday, missing the cut on the Celtic Manor course where he captained Europe to Ryder Cup victory in October.

That is his worst score on the European Tour since compiling 17 over at the 1991 Benson and Hedges International in St. Meillon, England.

After opening with a 7-over 78, Montgomerie double-bogeyed Nos. 12 and 16 and added four more bogeys in a 79. He drove into the water, chipped over the green at one hole and three-putted on two others.

“I just played awful and I’m very disappointed not to be playing at the weekend, never mind contending,” Montgomerie said. “It has become very important for me, qualifying at Sunningdale now.

“I’ve not had a year where I have not competed in a major before, so I want to keep that. I’ve played in the Open for 21 years in a row and I want to keep that record going. So it’s become quite important that I compete and get through on Monday, very important.”

Possessing eight European Order of Merit titles, an unbeaten Ryder Cup singles record and 31 European Tour victories to sit fourth on the all-time list, Montgomerie is widely regarded as one of the best players to have never won a major – as demonstrated by five runner-up finishes.

But he turns 48 later this month and will likely look back at the 2006 U.S. Open at Winged Foot as having been his best chance to change that unwanted statistic. On that occasion, he let a one-stroke lead coming into the last hole turn into a loss by the same margin to Geoff Ogilvy of Australia.

A day after his stirring finish at Wentworth, Montgomerie struggled physically in playing 36 holes on Monday at Walton Heath in a doomed attempt to compete at the U.S. Open from June 16-19.

Playing a limited schedule of tournaments in recent years due to Ryder Cup and business interests has affected the Scot’s fitness, a facet of his game that has never been a strong point.

“I’m not 25 anymore, you know,” Montgomerie said. “It takes its toll trying to compete against guys that are only doing this, and guys that are less than half my age only doing this. It does take its toll. It’s unfortunate but that’s the way it is and I’ve got to accept that sometimes.

“I played OK last week but that’s once in a bloody blue moon. That’s not enough to shout home about, and then you’re back to square one here – with a bump.”

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. 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.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.