Norman Australian Golf Was Humiliated

By Associated PressNovember 26, 2002, 5:00 pm
COOLUM, Australia -- Greg Norman believes golf Down Under was humiliated by the first-round cancellation of last week's Australian Open due to unplayable greens, and that it may take years to repair the damage.
Returning to Australia for this week's Australian PGA, Norman said Tuesday that players in the United States were 'laughing'' over the situation at the Australian Open, where last Thursday's first round had to be called off.
Despite warnings from players and Australasian Tour staff as early as three days before, officials at Melbourne's Victoria Golf Club, under direction from the Australian Golf Union, cut the greens hours before the first round and did not water them the night before.
That compounded the impact of the close-cut surface and dry, drought conditions in the region. Players' putts were returning to their feet after snaking toward the hole and then coming back as much as 20 feet.
'Certainly I do feel embarrassed, it is the last thing we wanted,'' AGU executive director Colin Phillips said after the round was canceled, making it a 54-hole tournament. 'The buck stops with me. I accept full responsibility for it.''
Norman said that regardless of who takes the blame, the situation was embarrassing.
'It was sad, a bit of a humiliation to the game of golf in Australia,'' Norman said after arriving from Florida, where he hosted the Franklin Templeton Shootout last weekend. 'Players were talking about it on a regular basis. It was 10,000 miles away and they were basically laughing at us.''
It isn't the first time a tournament has been affected by unplayable greens in Australia. At the 1987 Australian Open at Royal Melbourne, Scotland's Sandy Lyle led a walkout under similar circumstances on the last scheduled day. That round was replayed, and Norman returned the next day to win the tournament.
In 1974, Lee Trevino stormed off Royal Melbourne's fast greens and vowed never to return.
Norman has criticized the AGU in the past over the condition of the greens at other Australian Opens.
'It really doesn't hold a whole lot of credibility the way they structure the game over here,'' he said. 'They've got a long way to go to repair the damage to say the least.''
Norman said he had trouble believing reports that the Victoria Golf Club greens were near 17 on the stimpmeter, a wooden device used to measure the speed of greens.
The greens at Augusta for the U.S. Masters usually are cut to about 12 and are recognized as the fastest of any tournament in the world.
'The players do have a sense of what is going on, we do play a lot of golf courses around the world,'' Norman said. 'When I heard that the greens were rolling about 17, that is unputtable.
'Somebody's head should roll in this deal. Colin Phillips fell on his sword, which he should do. They've got to sit back and reflect on this. They have a big bridge to repair in the world of golf.''
Norman will play with American John Daly and Australian Craig Parry in the opening two rounds of the Australian PGA on the par-72 Coolum course.
'I've never played here, but I've heard a lot of good things about the layout,'' Norman said. 'I played pretty well last week in Florida but didn't score well.''
Defending champion Robert Allenby of Australia will skip the Coolum event to play at Sun City in South Africa.
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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.

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Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

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. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

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


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


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

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

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