Paul Casey takes sole possession of BMW PGA lead

By Associated PressMay 22, 2009, 4:00 pm
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2009 European TourVIRGINIA WATER, England ' Paul Casey shot a 5-under 67 Friday for a two-stroke lead midway through the BMW PGA Championship.
Casey was at 8-under 136 after two rounds. Defending champion Miguel Angel Jimenez (70), David Horsey (71), Anthony Wall (71) and Soren Kjeldsen (69) were next.
Paul Casey
Paul Casey reacts to making eagle on the 13th hole Friday. (Getty Images)
Ben Curtis was among three players another stroke back.
Colin Montgomerie and Rory McIlroy were in a group at 2 under. Jose Maria Olazabal, voted into the World Hall of Fame this week, birdied his last two holes for a 70 and joined John Daly (71) at 144.
Course designer Ernie Els birdied the last for a second 73 that left him right on the cut of 2 over, in a group that included Graeme McDowell, who shot 71 despite shin splints in his right leg. An MRI scan revealed McDowell did not have a stress fracture, which could have forced him out for several weeks.
Those missing the cut included Masters champion Angel Cabrera (75), the 2005 winner, and world No. 4 Henrik Stenson (70), who needed an eagle at the last and could make only par. Lee Westwood was out after a second successive 77.
Casey said his round of two eagles, four birdies, and three bogeys was a bit frustrating.
My ball-striking was better today and I hit a lot of good shots at the flags but I still made a few too many mistakes, the Englishman said. If I look at the number at the bottom, Im pleased, but not with the last five holes.
That span included both bogeys, one at the 17th where he drove into trees.
By contrast, Casey started well, with an eagle at the long 4th.
I think my drive hit a sprinkler head or a downslope because it went miles. Then I hit a 7-iron to seven feet, Casey said.
His second eagle, at the par-4 13th, came on a 9-iron 163 yards that bounced once and dropped into the hole for a two.
Casey has won Abu Dhabi and the Houston Open this year, and was runner-up at the Accenture Match Play. He has risen from 41st at the start of the year to seventh in the world rankings, and has not reset his goals.
I wrote them down at the start of the year and they were fairly lofty. I havent had to redo them, he said.
Jimenez had two birdies and two bogeys on his first seven holes, and followed that with 10 straight pars. He finished with a 25-foot putt for eagle on his last hole.
He drove into a fairway bunker on 18 but a perfect 5-wood put him on the front of the green.
My game today was not as good as yesterday but I played decent, the Spaniard said. A 70 was about the right score for how I played today.
Daly atoned for a poor day with his irons by chipping in three times on the back nine, including once from a bunker.
On a perfect day with little wind, scoring was still not easy on the fast-running course redesigned over the past two years by Els. The pin placements were also tough.
Ernie has done a great job, Daly said. He has really made you think where you have to hit it with some of the bunkers.
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  • Day (68) just one back at Australian Open

    By Nick MentaNovember 24, 2017, 6:40 am

    Jason Day posted a second-round 68 to move himself just one off the lead held by Lucas Herbert through two rounds at the Emirates Australian Open. Here’s where things stand after 36 holes in Sydney.

    Leaderboard: Herbert (-9), Day (-8), Cameron Davis (-7), Anthony Quayle (-6), Matt Jones (-4), Cameron Smith (-4), Nick Cullen (-4), Richard Green (-4)

    What it means: Day is in search of his first worldwide victory of 2017. The former world No. 1 last visited the winner’s circle in May 2016, when he won The Players at TPC Sawgrass. A win this week would close out a difficult year for the Aussie who struggled with his game while also helping his mother in her battle with cancer. Day’s last victory on his native soil came in 2013, when he partnered with Adam Scott to win the World Cup of Golf for Australia at Royal Melbourne.

    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open

    Round of the day: Herbert followed an opening 67 with a round of 66 to vault himself into the lead at The Australian Golf Club. He made six birdies, including four on his second nine, against a lone bogey to take the outright lead. The 22-year-old, who held the lead at this event last year and captured low-amateur honors in 2014, is coming off a runner-up finish at the NSW Open Championship, which boosted him from 714th to 429th in the Official World Golf Ranking. His 5-under score was matched by Dale Brandt-Richards and Josh Cabban.

    Best of the rest: Matt Jones, who won this event over Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott two years ago, turned in 4-under 67. Jones is best known to American audiences for his playoff victory at the 2014 Shell Houston Open and for holding the 36-hole lead at the 2015 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits, which was eventually won by Day. Jones will start the weekend five shots off the lead, at 4 under par.

    Biggest disappointment: Spieth has a lot of work to do this weekend if he expects to be in the title picture for the fourth year in a row. Rounds of 70-71 have him eight shots behind the lead held by Herbert. Spieth made a birdie and a bogey on each side Friday to turn in level par. The reigning champion golfer of the year has finished first, second and first at this event over the last three years.

    Storyline to watch this weekend: The Australian Open is the first event of the 2018 Open Qualifying Series. The leading three players who finish in the top 10 and who are not otherwise exempt will receive invites into next summer’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

    Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

    Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

    In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

    "It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’

    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open

    Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

    “Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

    “That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

    Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

    The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

    Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

    Lexi Thompson:

    Baking time!!

    A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

    David Feherty:

    Jack Nicklaus:

    GC Tiger Tracker:

    Steve Stricker:

    Golf Channel:

    Frank Nobilo:

    Ian Poulter:

    Tyrone Van Aswegen:

    Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

    By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

    Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.