Notes Presidents Cup Clash Major Letdowns

By Associated PressAugust 10, 2007, 4:00 pm
PGA ChampionshipTULSA, Okla. -- Lucas Glover is No. 10 in the Presidents Cup standings by a mere $43,861 over John Rollins, so after opening with a 70 in the PGA Championship, you would think he would have checked to see what Rollins shot.
 
'I didn't have to,' Glover said. 'I'm staying with him.'
 
Their wives became friends a few years ago. Glover and Rollins frequently play practice rounds and have dinner at least once a week. Rollins' wife suggested a few months ago that they share a house at Southern Hills, not knowing they would be battling for what might be the final spot on the Presidents Cup team.
 
And it gets better. They played a practice round Wednesday with Stewart Cink, No. 9 in the standings but a little bit safer. Cink leads Glover by about $720,000.
 
Dollars are doubled in a Presidents Cup year, and the top 10 who earn a spot on the U.S. team will take shape over the weekend.
 
One thing appears certain -- Glover is doing a much better job paying attention to the right stuff, mainly his golf.
 
He was consumed with making the Ryder Cup team last year, so much that he lost focus on his golf and didn't earn any points over the final three months of qualifying.
 
'I've made the last five cuts in a row and I've been right around the top 10,' Glover said. 'I'm playing well, and I'm trying to think only about the tournament. Last year, I had it (the standings) down to a science.'
 
One guy who likely won't be on the team is Chris DiMarco, who holed the winning putt two years ago for captain Jack Nicklaus. DiMarco went an entire year without a top 10 on the PGA Tour, finally ending that drought when he tied for fourth last week at Firestone.
 
But he was out of gas at Southern Hills.
 
'This was my 10th tournament in 11 weeks,' DiMarco said after rounds of 79-73.
 
He tried to battle back with four birdies on his final seven holes, but a double bogey set him back. DiMarco said he wasn't ready for the PGA Championship after a week that felt like a major at Firestone. And he wound up breaking one his rules of golf.
 
'Do not hit out of the rough more than one time on the same hole,' he said.
 
DiMarco is 25th in the standings, and he was still holding out hope.
 
'I know he was looking for me to do well,' he said of Nicklaus, who will make his two selections Monday. 'You shouldn't rely on one week. My game is getting back to what it should be. Hopefully, he remembers what happened last time.'
 
MAJOR PAY
Todd Hamilton was at 5 over for the tournament on the back nine when a cruel thought entered his mind. This could have been the first time since his 2004 British Open victory he failed to make a cut in any of the majors.
 
'It just popped into my head,' Hamilton said.
 
He made the cut at the Masters in 2005. He made the cut at Royal Liverpool in 2006. But he was 0-for-3 in playing the weekend in the majors this year, and he was close to going home with six holes to play.
 
He made all pars for a 72, putting him at 5-over 145.
 
'Like a grizzled veteran, I pulled through,' he quipped.
 
ADIOS, ARGENTINA
U.S. Open champion Angel Cabrera bounced back nicely from his 81 with one birdie, one bogey and 16 pars on his way to a 70. He still missed the cut, taking two other Argentines with him. Andres Romero finished his amazing summer with an 81-72, while Jose Coceres had a 77 to finish at 8-over 148.
 
Romero was playing for the eighth consecutive week, with the British Open and Bridgestone Invitational surprise additions. He'll find out Monday if he gets another tournament on his schedule -- the Presidents Cup.
 
He was 10th on the Presidents Cup standings for the International team, which is based on the world ranking. But with gradual reductions that take place each week, he was assured of dropping to No. 11 behind Nick O'Hern no matter what happens the rest of the week. His only hope is for Gary Player to make him a captain's pick.
 
Being from Argentina might work in his favor, especially since it would give Cabrera a partner with whom he is comfortable.
 
'It is the decision of Gary Player,' Romero said. 'I would like to play. But I didn't play well this week, so I have to wait.'
 
Stephen Ames, who is trying to make the team with a big week at Southern Hills, said he expected Romero to be on the team.
 
'He's proved himself as a performer to some extent,' Ames said. 'If I was a captain, I would be picking him, without a doubt. Too good of a player to leave out.'
 
HALL OF FAME
With the induction ceremony being held only about a half-hour from the Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio, Scott Verplank had made plans to go watch Thurman Thomas enter the Pro Football Hall of Fame last weekend.
 
'I had my tickets and everything. I was all set up,' Verplank said.
 
Then he spoiled it all by getting into contention at the Bridgestone Invitational. Verplank had finished outside the top 50 the previous two years at the event, but was three shots off the lead entering the weekend.
 
'I actually played decent up there where I couldn't make it,' Verplank said. 'I told him, `Sorry. I usually don't play any good here.''
 
Verplank said he didn't expect Thomas, who also attended Oklahoma State, to be in attendance at the PGA Championship. But he thought another former Oklahoma State tailback and Hall of Famer might stop by.
 
'It wouldn't surprise me if Barry (Sanders) showed up. He's a golf nut,' Verplank said.
 
MAJOR DEPARTURE
The PGA Championship typically groups the three major champions of the year, but only two of them will be playing on the weekend. Along with Cabrera, Masters champion Zach Johnson also missed the cut with rounds of 74-76.
 
Johnson said he would learn to say no to all the media obligations, and he did just that Friday, declining to stop for reporters.
 
British Open champion Padraig Harrington was the only player still alive, despite a 73 that left him at 2-over 142.
 
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    Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

    By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

    The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

    They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

    Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

    Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

    Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

    ''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

    The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

    In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

    Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

    Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

    By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

    Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

    Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

    Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

    Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

    It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

    The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

    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.