More of Moore Less of Mickelson at Frys

By Associated PressOctober 19, 2007, 4:00 pm
2007 FrySCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Ryan Moore had a talk with himself a week ago after a third-round meltdown in Las Vegas. He must have been a good listener.
 
The bearded 24-year-old former U.S. Amateur champion matched his career low round with a 7-under 63 on Friday to take a three-stroke lead halfway through the Fry's Electronics Open at Grayhawk Golf Club. Moore, who has three second-place finishes in his three years on the tour, was at 11-under 129.
 
Moore, who underwent surgery on his left hand a year ago, said a minor change in his grip made all the difference.
 
'I just felt comfortable out there,' he said. 'I've played well on this golf course before. I actually won a tournament (Thunderbird International Junior) here when I was 18. I just struck the ball well and gave myself a lot of chances.'
 
Australian Mark Hensby was one of three tied at 8-under 132 after a career-low round of 61. Ben Crane and Daisuke Maruyama also were at 132. Canadian Mike Weir, the 2003 Masters champion, joined Carl Pettersson and Nick Watney four shots back at 7-under 133.
 
The event's biggest name, Phil Mickelson, shot 70 for a 1-over 141 and missed the cut.
 
Moore has finished second three times, including the Memorial in June, but has never won since turning pro after the 2005 Masters. He said he's been inconsistent since last year's surgery.
 
He was at 12 under after his eighth birdie of the day, on the par-4, 332-yard 15th, before losing a stroke with a bogey on the 17th.
 
'Something just kind of clicked and made sense to me after the round Saturday (in Las Vegas),' Moore said. 'I played absolutely terrible on Saturday. I just was so frustrated, I went and sat down for about 30 minutes, just had a Coke and sat there and was like, `All right, I can't take this anymore, shooting 76s on Saturday. It's just driving me crazy.''
 
Then he thought of a minor adjustment to his hand position he might make.
 
'Something started making a little bit of sense to me,' he said, 'and I went out on the range and tried it and it's exactly what I've been missing for the last, you know, year, really.'
 
Hensby said this is his first time playing the 7,125-yard Raptor course at the Grayhawk Golf Club in north Scottsdale, where it was sunny and the temperature reached 90 degrees.
 
'I went to Geoff Ogilvy's wedding here,' he said. 'That was the only time.'
 
The tournament, in its first year, is part of the PGA TOUR Fall Series. The purse is $5 million, with $900,000 going to the winner. It's an event that could make or break players scrambling to finish in the top 125 on the money list to keep their tour card.
 
Hensby entered the tournament ranked 151st.
 
'That's why it's exciting,' he said, 'because a guy can be having the worst year of his life, and win, and all of a sudden he's having a great year.'
 
With so many PGA TOUR pros living in the Scottsdale area, the field was the strongest of the seven Fall Series events, led by Mickelson, the No. 2 tour's money winner behind Tiger Woods and a Grayhawk member.
 
But three weeks after his strong performance in the Presidents Cup, Mickelson missed the cut by a stroke on a course he has played hundreds of times.
 
'I didn't think I played that poorly, I just scored terribly,' he said. 'Every time I made a birdie, I followed it with a bogey and never got anything going.'
 
It was a bad year for Mickelson in his former home state. He also missed the cut in the FBR Open, held just down the road at TPC Scottsdale in early February.
 
'Missing a cut is just missing a cut,' he said. 'It's just frustrating every way you look at it, whether it's a major, whether it's a tour event or your home course like Grayhawk, it's always frustrating.'
 
Among other notables who missed the cut were FBR winner Aaron Baddeley (141), John Daly (141) and David Duval (144).
 
Weir was just three weeks removed from his emotional victory in his native Canada over Tiger Woods in the Presidents Cup. Weir followed an opening 69 with a 6-under 64.
 
First-round leader Michael Allen, who lives a 10-minute drive from Grayhawk, began the day with a two-shot lead after an 8-under 63 in the first round. But he shot a 1-over 72 on Friday and was in a group of 10 five back at 6-under 134.
 
GOLF CHANNEL analyst Brandel Chamblee, who lives in Scottsdale, made his first PGA TOUR appearance in three years, and it was a short one. He finished at 3-over 143 and missed the cut.
 
Related Links:
  • GOLF CHANNEL Airtimes
  • Full Coverage - Fry's Electronics Open
  • Lexi 'applaud's USGA, R&A for rules change

    By Randall MellDecember 11, 2017, 5:15 pm

    Lexi Thompson’s pain may prove to be the rest of golf’s gain.

    David Rickman, the R&A’s executive director of governance, acknowledged on Golf Channel’s "Morning Drive" Monday that the new protocols that will eliminate the use of TV viewer call-ins and emails to apply penalties was hastened by the controversy following Thompson’s four-shot penalty at the ANA Inspiration in early April. The new protocols also set up rules officials to monitor TV broadcasts beginning next year.

    “Clearly, that case has been something of a focus point for us,” Rickman said.

    Thompson reacted to the new protocols in an Instagram post.

    “I applaud the USGA and the R&A for their willingness to revise the Rules of Golf to address certain unfortunate situations that have arisen several times in the game of golf,” Thompson wrote. “In my case, I am thankful no one else will have to deal with an outcome such as mine in the future.”

    Thompson was penalized two shots for improperly returning her ball to its mark on a green during Saturday’s round after a viewer emailed LPGA officials during Sunday’s broadcast. She was penalized two more shots for signing an incorrect scorecard for her Saturday round. Thompson ultimately lost in a playoff to So Yeon Ryu.

    The new protocols will also eliminate the additional two-shot penalty a player receives for failing to include a penalty when a player was unaware of the penalty.

    Shortly after the ANA Inspiration, the USGA and R&A led the formation of a video review working group, which included the PGA Tour, LPGA, European Tour, Ladies European Tour and PGA of America.

    Also, just three weeks after Thompson was hit with the four-shot penalty, the USGA and R&A released a new Rules of Golf decision decision (34-3/10) limiting video evidence in two ways:

    1. If an infraction can’t be seen with the naked eye, there’s no penalty, even if video shows otherwise.

    2. If a tournament committee determines that a player does “all that can be reasonably expected to make an accurate estimation or measurement” in determining a line or position to play from or to spot a ball, then there will be no penalty even if video replay later shows that to be wrong.

    While the USGA and R&A said the new decision wasn’t based on Thompson’s ANA incident, LPGA players immediately began calling it the “Lexi Rule.”

    Getty Images

    PGA Tour, LPGA react to video review rules changes

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 1:32 pm

    The USGA and R&A announced on Monday updates to the Rules of Golf, including no longer accepting call-ins relating to violations. The PGA Tour and LPGA, which were both part of a working group of entities who voted on the changes, issued the following statements:

    PGA Tour:

    The PGA Tour has worked closely with the USGA and R&A on this issue in recent years, and today's announcement is another positive step to ensure the Rules of Golf align with how the game is presented and viewed globally. The PGA Tour will adopt the new Local Rule beginning January 1, 2018 and evolve our protocols for reviewing video evidence as outlined.

    LPGA:

    We are encouraged by the willingness of the governing bodies to fully vet the issues and implement real change at a pace much quicker than the sport has seen previously. These new adaptations, coupled with changes announced earlier this year, are true and meaningful advances for the game. The LPGA plans to adopt fully the protocols and new Local Rule as outlined.

    Getty Images

    Sharma closes on Monday, wins Joburg Open

    By Associated PressDecember 11, 2017, 12:43 pm

    JOHANNESBURG – Shubhankar Sharma won his first European Tour title by a shooting 3-under 69 Monday in the final round of the weather-delayed Joburg Open.

    The 21-year-old Indian resumed his round on the eighth green after play was halted early Sunday afternoon because of storms. He parred that hole, birdied No. 9 and made par on every hole on the back nine.


    Full-field scores from the Joburg Open


    Sharma finished at 23-under 264, three strokes ahead of the pack, and qualified for next year's British Open, too.

    ''I actually wasn't going to come here about a week ago ... so I'm really happy that I came,'' said Sharma, who shot 61 in the second round. ''I don't think I'm ever going forget my first time in South Africa.''

    Erik van Rooyen (66) was second, three strokes ahead of Shaun Norris (65) and Tapio Pulkkanen (68).

    Getty Images

    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 pm