Notes Woods Still No 1

By Associated PressAugust 15, 2004, 4:00 pm
04 PGA ChampionshipHAVEN, Wis. -- Tiger Woods came up empty in a major again, but he's still the No. 1 ranked player in the world.
 
Woods extended his run to a record 332 weeks when Ernie Els finished in a tie for fourth with Chris Riley at the PGA Championship. Els needed to finish second alone to replace Woods atop the world rankings.
 
Woods came into the PGA tied with Greg Norman for most weeks at No. 1.
 
Another of Woods' streaks was extended Sunday, and this one he'd rather snap. Woods failed to win a major for a second straight year - a run of 10 consecutive tournaments.
 
Woods was sure he could bury his slump in the majors on the shores of Lake Michigan, but instead finished tied for 24th, his worst finish in a major this year. His worst finish in any major was a tie for 39th at last year's PGA Championship.
 
'Disappointed,' said Woods, who must wait until the Masters next April for his next shot at ending the streak. 'I felt like I was playing so well coming into this event and I just didn't.'
 
Woods shot a final round 73 Sunday at Whistling Straits that left him at 4-under 286.
 
Woods, whose only win this season was at the Match Play Championships, arrived at the PGA off three straight top 10 finishes - a tie for seventh at the Western Open, a tie for ninth at the British Open and a tie for third at the Buick Open.
 
But he never contended after an opening round 75 on Thursday, with his putter the main culprit.
 
He mounted his only charge of the week with a pair of backside birdies on Friday for a 69 that kept alive his streak of never having missed the cut in a major as a pro.
 
Woods carded another 69 on Saturday, but by then he was too far back.
 
Now, Woods will concentrate on improving his putting as he gets ready for some of the remaining bigger events on the Tour's schedule - the Ryder Cup, the World Golf Championships and the Tour Championship.
 
'I feel like I had about 200 putts this week,' he said. 'My speed was off. Speed and line off. That's not a good combination.'
 
MICHEEL'S DEFENSE
Defending champion Shaun Micheel tied for 24th at this year's event, halting a two-year trend of the defending champion making an early exit.
 
Both 2001 winner David Toms and 2002 champion Rich Beem failed to make the cut a year after winning their titles and were out after two rounds.
 
Micheel appeared headed for the same fate when he shot 77 in the first round Thursday, but rallied with a 68 on Friday. He shot 70-71 on the weekend for a 286 total.
 
Micheel had some familiar company in his 24th-place finish. Chad Campbell, who finished second last year, two shots behind Micheel, was also part of the seven-way tie at 286 with rounds of 73-70-71-72.
 
WELCOME BACK
Ben Crane can expect a more formal invitation to the 2005 PGA Championship at Baltusrol.
 
Crane, who got into this year's event when Fred Couples pulled out because of a bad back, guaranteed himself a return trip with a final round 70 that lifted him into a tie for ninth place. The top 15 finishers automatically qualify for next year's PGA field.
 
Crane, whose only PGA win was at the BellSouth Classic last year, finished at 5-under 283.
 
Justin Leonard's tie for second assured him of an invitation to next year's Masters. That was a needed reward for the Texan after struggling all year.
 
NOT SO BAD
Golfers at the PGA Championship whistled more than the wind at Whistling Straits.
 
The wind picked up Sunday, but Pete Dye's lakeside creation never did bear its fangs the way the world's greatest golfers feared.
 
When last year's champion, Shaun Micheel, tested the course on a windy day in June, he pronounced that if the wind whipped up off of Lake Michigan, a score of over par on the staggering 7,514-yard layout might be good enough to win the Wanamaker Trophy.
 
Several others came to Wisconsin and soon saw what the fuss was about. They complained about the layout, the narrow fairways, the blind tee shots, the length, you name it.
 
But the winds died down most of the week and so did the complaints.
 
Brad Faxon said the chatter in the clubhouse was all about how much the golfers liked the course, and Stewart Cink said he couldn't think of a better course, public or private.
 
'If I had a friend that was trying to go play Pebble Beach, I'll tell them to come here instead,' he said. 'I like this course better.'
 
SOLID SULLIVAN
Chip Sullivan, who once broke a course record that Arnold Palmer held for 25 years, added another item to his resume this week at the PGA Championship.
 
The club professional from Troutville, Va., shot a final round, 1-under-71 Sunday. That gave him a 72-hole total of 287, the top score among the three club pros who made the cut. Sullivan's other three rounds were 72-71-73.
 
That's the best performance at the PGA Championship by a club professional in relation to par since 1969, an achievement to go along with the 62 he shot at the Country Club in Cleveland to surpass Palmer.
 
Roy Biancalana of Huntley, Ill., was next at 299, including a final round 79. Jeff Coston from Blaine, Wash., shot 77-68-79-77 (301).
 
STILL FAN FAVORITE
Shingo Katayama, funky cowboy hat and all, is still making friends in America.
 
The native of Ibaragi, Japan, who became an instant celebrity three years ago with a stirring run at the 2001 PGA Championship at The Atlanta Athletic Club, heard his name chanted plenty of times during his final round Sunday at Whistling Straits.
 
Katayama finished in a tie for fourth at Atlanta behind David Toms. He shot three rounds in the 60s, including a 6-under 64 the second day that gave him a share of the lead.
 
He won the crowds over in Atlanta with his white cowboy hat, the sides tied up with a string, and his emotional style of play. Nothing has changed in that regard.
 
'The people are nice,' he said Sunday. 'They were calling my name all day.'
 
Katayama made the cut this week at Whistling Straits, but never seriously contended. He was even par through the first two rounds but struggled to a 76 on Saturday. He finished with a 73 Sunday and was 5 over for the tournament.
 
'It's a very tough course,' he said of the 7,514-yard layout on the shores of Lake Michigan.
 
He was, however, enamored with the lake.
 
'It's the biggest lake I've ever seen in America,' he said. 'All of Japan could fit in it.'
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - PGA Championship
  • Photo Gallery - Whistling Straits
  • Full Coverage - PGA Championship
  • Course Tour - Whistling Straits
     
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    Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

    Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.

    Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.

    As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.

    "That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."

    Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.

    Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.

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    Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

    If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.

    Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.

    But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.

    Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.

    Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:

    Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180

    Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70

    Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5

    Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450

    Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200

    Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000

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    Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

    SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.

    Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.

    “It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.

    Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.

    “What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”

    Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.

    “When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”

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    Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

    SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.

    Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.

    Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim. 

    Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.