Presidents Cup Teams Finalized Weir In

By Associated PressAugust 13, 2007, 4:00 pm
TULSA, Okla. -- That big blast coming from the Great White North was a nation exhaling. Canada will be hosting the Presidents Cup next month, and on Monday it was assured of having its biggest star.
 
Former Masters champion Mike Weir was picked as a wild card for the International team, ending months of speculation whether captain Gary Player would take someone who was 20th in the Presidents Cup standings and had not won in three years.
 
'He's a terrific team member,' Player said. 'And being played in Canada, if we didn't have a Canadian in my team and playing in Canada, I can assure you, the series would be quite flat among the Canadian people. Mike is a hero in his country, deservedly so.'
 
Two years ago, Player took fellow South African Trevor Immelman, who was 22nd in the standings.
 
His other selection Monday was Nick O'Hern, the only player to have beaten Tiger Woods twice in match play. The left-handed Australian narrowly missed making the team on his own when Stuart Appleby closed with a 69 in the PGA Championship to tie for 12th, earning just enough world ranking points to finish 10th in the standings.
 
U.S. captain Jack Nicklaus used his two picks on two promising young players who have never played in any cup -- Lucas Glover and Hunter Mahan, who has not finished out of the top 25 all summer. Glover was 11th in the U.S. standings, while Mahan finished at No. 14.
 
The Presidents Cup will be held Sept. 27-30 at Royal Montreal, the first time the matches have been played in Canada. The event already is a sellout, although Weir's presence most certainly will bring the buzz.
 
'I'm sure the Canadian people are going to be relieved,' Player said. 'I continually had questions every week, 'Are you putting Mike, are you putting him in?' It's going to enhance the event in Canada.'
 
Ernie Els, who didn't play in the 2005 matches while recovering from knee surgery, led the top 10 players who qualified for the International team through the world ranking. The others were Adam Scott, Vijay Singh, Geoff Ogilvy, Rory Sabbatini, K.J. Choi, Retief Goosen, Angel Cabrera, Immelman and Appleby.
 
Woods again was the top U.S. qualifier, which was based on PGA Tour earnings the last two years. He was followed by Jim Furyk, Phil Mickelson, Zach Johnson, Charles Howell III, David Toms, Scott Verplank, Steve Stricker, Stewart Cink and Woody Austin.
 
Austin's runner-up finish at the PGA Championship allowed him to finish 10th ahead of Glover.
 
It will be the first team for Glover, whose lone PGA TOUR victory came two years ago at Disney. He was in good shape to make the Ryder Cup team last year until he put too much pressure on himself and didn't earn a single point the final four months.
 
Mahan turned his season around with a 63 during U.S. Open qualifying, and he hasn't stopped. He won the Travelers Championship in Hartford for his first PGA TOUR victory, then finished in the top 10 the next three weeks, including the British Open.
 
'If there's been a player who has played better, a young player who's played better in the last six months, I don't know who it is,' Nicklaus said.
 
Still, the biggest news of Monday's announcement was Weir.
 
He has played on the last three Presidents Cup teams, going 8-6-0. But he has been slowed the last two years with nagging back and neck injuries, and revamping his swing to take stress off his back. Last week at Firestone, he withdrew in the middle of the Bridgestone Invitational after tweaking his neck. Then, he opened with a 77 in the PGA Championship and missed the cut.
 
Weir spent the weekend wondering if he would take part in Canada's biggest golf event.
 
'I felt like maybe I was trying too hard,' Weir said. 'Now that Gary has made me a selection, hopefully I can relax a little bit more and play some good golf leading into the Presidents Cup. I'm really relieved.'
 
Stephen Ames, raised in Trinidad & Tobago but a Canadian citizen the past several years, could have earned a spot on the team by finishing fourth at Southern Hills. Playing in the final group with Woods, however, he closed with a 76 and wound up 16th in the standings. Player said he considered Ames, but has traveled enough to know that Weir is the player the Canadians wanted to see.
 
Player thought about Andres Romero, the 26-year-old Argentine who nearly won the British Open and captured his first European Tour victory a week later in Germany. It would have given Cabrera a Spanish-speaking partner.
 
But it was hard to argue with O'Hern, who has beaten Woods twice in the Accenture Match Play Championship.
 
'I'd obviously love another crack at Tiger,' O'Hern said. 'He's the No. 1 player in the world for a reason, and I think everyone would love to have that challenge. That's why we play the game, to play against the best players in the world.'
 
O'Hern has been making his U.S. base at Isleworth outside Orlando, Fla., where Woods has lived since turning pro.
 
'I see him from time to time out on the driving range,' O'Hern said. 'We sort of go about our business. He's pretty intense when he practices, so I leave him alone and vice versa. We get along just fine. It's probably a good thing I don't play with him, because then I'd find out how really good he is.'
 
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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.