Players critical of Players greens

By Associated PressMay 8, 2010, 4:31 am

The Players Championship

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – Jerry Kelly knows the TPC Sawgrass endured a relatively harsh winter, one of the coldest on record for northeast Florida.

But he believes freezing temperatures “are no excuse” for the greens being as soft and supple as they have been through two rounds in The Players Championship.

“They’re spongy, they don’t roll true in the afternoon, they can’t keep them short enough,” Kelly said Friday. “I’m disappointed in the way that this thing is set up. I know it’s a tough winter, but I was hoping they could stress these greens a little more. It just looks like they can’t stress them. I don’t know what’s going on. I’d start again.”

And get this: Kelly shot a bogey-free 66 in the second round, leaving him little reason to complain. He may have been the most outspoken, but he was hardly alone.

Several others said they were surprised to see the Stadium Course greens playing relatively easy during the event.

“Very surprised,” Tiger Woods said. “We’re holding 5-irons, and shots on (No.) 8 with 3-irons are holding. You would think that they’d be a little bit more springy than that.”


HAAS HICCUP: A double bogey on the par-4 18th kept Jay Haas from making Players history Friday.

Haas, trying to become the oldest player to make the cut at the tournament, pulled his tee shot on the final hole into the water left. He reached the green two shots later, but two-putted from 30 feet for a 6.

Making matters worse, the 56-year-old Haas bogeyed Nos. 14 and 15. So he walked off the Stadium Course having given back four strokes over the final five holes.

“I’m real disappointed right now,” he said. “You know, I guess I had some dreams of making the cut, doing some good things, but just couldn’t finish.”

Haas shot 73 in the second round, moved to even-par 144 and missed the cut by two strokes.

Julius Boros remains the oldest to play all four rounds at The Players. He made the cut at age 55 in 1975.

The weekend wasn’t a complete loss for Haas. His son, Bill, was 7 under after two rounds. The father-son combination was the first to compete at The Players in the same year.

“Yeah, I’m excited for Bill,” Jay Haas said. “He’s been playing really well. Hopefully he can keep that up. I’m anxious to come out and watch him and see what he can do.”
HEADED HOME:
Ernie Els, Vijay Singh, Rory McIlroy, Padraig Harrington and defending champion Henrik Stenson were among the notables who missed Friday’s cut.

Stenson, Singh, Angel Cabrera, Stewart Cink, Paul Casey, Camilo Villegas and nine others got knocked out by a single shot – John Merrick’s 15-foot birdie putt to end his round.

“I had no idea,” Merrick said. “That’s the way it works sometimes. Oh well.”

Had Merrick made par on No. 18, those 15 would have stuck around for at least another day. Instead, he hit a solid drive, an even better 8-iron from 175 yards out and then sank the putt from below the hole.

“To have to finish on that hole and have to make birdie or par, that’s the last hole you want to play,” said Merrick, who was at 2-under 142. “That putt on 18 was the first putt outside of 3 feet I made all day.”
DECISION PAYS OFF:
Francesco Molinari could have stayed home and played the Italian Open this week – much like his brother, Edoardo, did. Instead, Francesco decided to travel overseas for The Players Championship.

His decision looks like a wise choice.

Molinari shot a 7-under 65 in the second round and moved to 11 under for the tournament, one shot behind leader Lee Westwood.

“That, for me, was a really tough decision,” he said. “Because not playing there for the first time – I’ve always played decently – and I won four years ago, so I was looking forward to playing the Italian Open, especially because it’s in my hometown.

“But then when I saw it was clashing with The Players. This is one of the tournaments you dream of playing as a kid and you watch on TV. I think it’s easy to say now that I’m 11 under. But even if you miss the cut, it’s one of those tournaments that takes you to a different level, and it’s really good for your experience.”
HIGH SCORE:
Mathew Goggin carded the highest, single-hole score of anyone Friday, a quintuple-bogey 9 on the par-4 fourth. He also finished with the craziest scorecard of the tournament – posting six birdies, five pars, three bogeys and four “others.” His card had just about every number between 2 and 9, missing only an 8.

The worst one came after he reached a greenside bunker with his second shot. Goggin flew the green with his third shot and found water.

He dropped on the other side and chunked his chip into the drink. He finally found the green after another drop, then two-putted for 9.

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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.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

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.

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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.