Notes Tough Day for Kendall

By Associated PressJuly 17, 2004, 4:00 pm
TROON, Scotland -- Skip Kendall slept in and still had to wait more than four hours for his tee time Saturday in the British Open. Once he got started, it didn't take long for him to lose the lead.
Kendall bogeyed the first hole, fell one shot behind on the next hole and finally ended the third round with a 4-over 75 that dropped him five shots out of the lead.
'A combination of I didn't hit it quite as well, didn't have quite as many opportunities,' Kendall said. 'What opportunities I did have, I didn't take advantage by making any putts.'
Kendall was a surprising leader after a 66 in the second round gave him a one-shot lead and a 3:30 p.m. tee time. He stayed up late watching movies, slept in until 11 a.m. and watched another movie.
'Probably the hardest thing is waiting until 3:30 to play,' he said. 'That's a long time.'
His round started poorly with a ball that kicked left into the rough, leading to a bogey. Kendall made several good par saves, but those were the only putts he made. His round got away from him with bogeys on the 12th and 13th, and missing the green on the par-3 17th for his fourth bogey.
'I felt pretty good out there,' Kendall said. 'Nothing happened. Kind of unfortunate.'
He's not about to give up yet.
'I just hope I'll have a round like one of the first two days,' he said. 'Not like today.'
Davis Love III got off to a terrific start, making a 6-foot birdie on the first, chipping in from 35 feet on the second and holing an 8-foot birdie on the fourth to get within three shots of the lead.
He had a chance to get even closer on the par-5 sixth, but it all went wrong with one bad lie.
In the clumpy rough right of the fairway, Love's club got hung up in the thick grass and he shanked it. The ball took off on a 45-degree angle into a huge gorse bush. When he realized where it was, Love gave up and went back to his original spot. Even when four fans climbed into the prickly bush and found it, Love told them not to worry.
He took his two-shot penalty, scrambled for double bogey and didn't make another birdie until the 18th for a 71. Love was at 1-under 212.
Ian Poulter is brash when it comes to his clothing, and his golf.
The Englishman who wore Union Jack trousers in the opening round went with something only slightly more subtle Saturday -- pink shoes, pink knee-high socks, black trousers and a pink cap.
More people are talking about his apparel than his game, but Poulter doesn't mind.
'My golf game definitely backs up what I wear on the golf course,' he said after a 71, which left him at 1-over 214 for the championship. 'I'm not fazed by people's comments.'
Poulter, 28, has three victories on the European tour.
'As long as I keep playing like this in these tournament, my time will come,' he said.
He said he most likely would auction his clothes from the British Open and give the money to charity. His son had a high fever last week and was hospitalized for two days at York Hill in Glasgow.
'They got him back fit and healthy,' Poulter said. 'I'll make a donation to them from the proceeds of the trousers.'
Mark Calcavecchia had an unusual 69 in the third round that didn't put him into contention, but gave him a chance for his third straight top-10 finish at Royal Troon.
Calcavecchia's birdies came on the three par 5s, and his lone bogey came at the Postage Stamp par-3 eighth hole.
'I didn't have a 5 on my card today, and that's hard to do at Royal Troon,' he said. 'And I had a good time doing it.'
Calcavecchia won the 1989 British Open at Royal Troon for his only major. He returned in 1997 and tied for 10th. He made the cut on the number Friday at 3-over 145, and finished Saturday at 1-over 214 and a tie for 23rd.
'I'm no threat to win the tournament,' he said. 'I'd love to have a great round tomorrow and maybe squeak up there into the top 10 again. Historically, when I play a course well I usually play it well most of the time.'
Based on Friday's exchange rate, the purse at the British Open (4 million pounds) translates to about $7.49 million, the largest of the four major championships. The winner will get $1,348,272.
Retief Goosen earned $1,125,000 for winning the U.S. Open, while Phil Mickelson got $1.17 million at the Masters.
The largest official payoff in golf is 1 million pounds (about $1.88 million) at the World Match Play Championship in England. The biggest on the PGA Tour is $1.44 million at The Players Championship.
Sean Whiffin was alone in the first tee time, so he brought along David Andrews, the assistant pro at Royal Troon, as a marker. Whiffin shot a 71. ... Chris DiMarco's tough week of travel finally caught up to him. DiMarco had one flight canceled and another delayed, so he didn't arrive at Troon until Wednesday night. He opened with 71-71, but a 78 on Saturday knocked him out of the tournament. ... Sandy Lyle made three double bogeys on the back nine and shot an 81. Ernie Els, Retief Goosen and Scott Verplank are the only players to break par all three days. ... Vijay Singh started the third round only three shots behind, but went bogey-double bogey-double bogey when he made the turn and shot 76 to fall nine shots behind.
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    Monty grabs lead entering final round in season-opener

    By Associated PressJanuary 20, 2018, 4:00 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii – Colin Montgomerie shot a second straight 7-under 65 to take a two-shot lead into the final round of the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    The 54-year-old Scot, a six-time winner on the over-50 tour, didn't miss a fairway on Friday and made five birdies on the back nine to reach 14 under at Hualalai.

    Montgomerie has made 17 birdies through 36 holes and said he will have to continue cashing in on his opportunities.

    ''We know that I've got to score something similar to what I've done – 66, 67, something like that, at least,'' Montgomerie said. ''You know the competition out here is so strong that if you do play away from the pins, you'll get run over. It's tough, but hey, it's great.''

    Full-field scores from the Mitsubishi Electric Championship

    First-round co-leaders Gene Sauers and Jerry Kelly each shot 68 and were 12 under.

    ''I hit the ball really well. You know, all the putts that dropped yesterday didn't drop today,'' Kelly said. ''I was just short and burning edges. It was good putting again. They just didn't go in.''

    David Toms was three shots back after a 66. Woody Austin, Mark Calcavecchia and Doug Garwood each shot 67 and were another shot behind.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was six shots back after a 67.

    The limited-field tournament on Hawaii's Big Island includes last season's winners, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    ''We've enjoyed ourselves thoroughly here,'' Montgomerie said. ''It's just a dramatic spot, isn't it? If you don't like this, well, I'm sorry, take a good look in the mirror, you know?''

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    The missing link: Advice from successful tour pros

    By Phil BlackmarJanuary 20, 2018, 1:24 am

    Today’s topic is significant in that it underscores the direction golf is headed, a direction that has me a little concerned.

    Now, more than ever, it has become the norm for PGA Tour players to put together a team to assist in all aspects of their career. These teams can typically include the player’s swing coach, mental coach, manager, workout specialist, dietician, physical therapist, short-game guru, doctor, accountant, nanny and wife. Though it often concerns me the player may be missing out when others are making decisions for them, that is not the topic.

    I want to talk about what most players seem to be inexplicably leaving off their teams.

    One of the things that separates great players from the rest of the pack – other than talent – is the great player’s ability to routinely stay comfortable and play with focus and clarity in all situations. Though innate to many, this skill is trainable and can be learned. Don’t get too excited, the details of such a plan are too long and more suited for a book than the short confines of this article.

    So, if that aspect of the game is so important, where is the representative on the player’s team who has stood on the 18th tee with everything on the line? Where is the representative on the team who has experienced, over and over, what the player will be experiencing? In other words, where is the successful former tour player on the team?

    You look to tennis and many players have such a person on their team. These teacher/mentors include the likes of Boris Becker, Ivan Lendl, Jimmy Connors and Brad Gilbert. Why is it not the norm in golf?

    Sure, a few players have sought out the advice of Jack Nicklaus, but he’s not part of a team. The teaching ranks also include some former players like Butch Harmon and a few others. But how many teams include a player who has contended in a major, let alone won one or more?

    I’m not here to argue the value and knowledge of all the other coaches who make up a player’s team. But how can the value of a successful tour professional be overlooked? If I’m going to ask someone what I should do in various situations on the course, I would prefer to include the experienced knowledge of players who have been there themselves.

    This leads me to the second part of today’s message. Is there a need for the professional players to mix with professional teachers to deliver the best and most comprehensive teaching philosophy to average players? I feel there is.

    Most lessons are concerned with changing the student’s swing. Often, this is done with little regard for how it feels to the student because the teacher believes the information is correct and more important than the “feels” of the student. “Stick with it until it’s comfortable” is often the message. This directive methodology was put on Twitter for public consumption a short time back:

    On the other hand, the professional player is an expert at making a score and understands the intangible side of the game. The intangible side says: “Mechanics cannot stand alone in making a good player.” The intangible side understands “people feel things differently”; ask Jim Furyk to swing like Dustin Johnson, or vice versa. This means something that looks good to us may not feel right to someone else.

    The intangible side lets us know that mechanics and feels must walk together in order for the player to succeed. From Ben Hogan’s book:

    “What I have learned I have learned by laborious trial and error, watching a good player do something that looked right to me, stumbling across something that felt right to me, experimenting with that something to see if it helped or hindered, adopting it if it helped, refining it sometimes, discarding it if it didn’t help, sometimes discarding it later if it proved undependable in competition, experimenting continually with new ideas and old ideas and all manner of variations until I arrived at a set of fundamentals that appeared to me to be right because they accomplished a very definite purpose, a set of fundamentals which proved to me they were right because they stood up and produced under all kinds of pressure.”

    Hogan beautifully described the learning process that could develop the swings of great players like DJ, Furyk, Lee Trevino, Jordan Spieth, Nicklaus, etc.

    Bob Toski is still teaching. Steve Elkington is helping to bring us the insight of Jackie Burke. Hal Sutton has a beautiful teaching facility outside of Houston. And so on. Just like mechanics and feels, it’s not either-or – the best message comes from both teachers and players.

    Lately, it seems the scale has swung more to one side; let us not forget the value of insights brought to us by the players who have best mastered the game.

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    Woods, Rahm, Rickie, J-Day headline Torrey field

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 20, 2018, 12:47 am

    Tiger Woods is set to make his 2018 debut.

    Woods is still part of the final field list for next week’s Farmers Insurance Open, the headliner of a tournament that includes defending champion Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson and Jason Day.

    In all, 12 of the top 26 players in the world are teeing it up at Torrey Pines.

    Though Woods has won eight times at Torrey Pines, he hasn’t broken 71 in his past seven rounds there and hasn’t played all four rounds since 2013, when he won. Last year he missed the cut after rounds of 76-72, then lasted just one round in Dubai before he withdrew with back spasms.

    After a fourth back surgery, Woods didn’t return to competition until last month’s Hero World Challenge, where he tied for ninth. 

    Woods has committed to play both the Farmers Insurance Open and next month's Genesis Open at Riviera, which benefits his foundation. 

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    Even on 'off' day, Rahm shoots 67 at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 20, 2018, 12:36 am

    Jon Rahm didn’t strike the ball as purely Friday as he did during his opening round at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

    He still managed a 5-under 67 that put him just one shot off the lead heading into the weekend.

    “I expected myself to go to the range (this morning) and keep flushing everything like I did yesterday,” said Rahm, who shot a career-low 62 at La Quinta on Thursday. “Everything was just a little bit off. It was just one of those days.”

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    After going bogey-free on Thursday, Rahm mixed four birdies and two bogeys over his opening six holes. He managed to settle down around the turn, then made two birdies on his final three holes to move within one shot of Andrew Landry (65).

    Rahm has missed only five greens through two rounds and sits at 15-under 129. 

    The 23-year-old Spaniard won in Dubai to end the year and opened 2018 with a runner-up finish at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. He needs a top-6 finish or better this week to supplant Jordan Spieth as the No. 2 player in the world.