Roaring to Victory Sabbatini Wins Colonial

By Associated PressMay 27, 2007, 4:00 pm
Crowne Plaza Invitational at ColonialFORT WORTH, Texas -- Rory Sabbatini has a new plaid jacket to help him forget about all his near-misses.
 
Sabbatini won the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial on Sunday, beating Jim Furyk and Bernhard Langer with a 15-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a playoff.
 
Rory Sabbatini
Rory Sabbatini collected his fourth career PGA TOUR title at Colonial. (WireImage)
It is the fourth career PGA TOUR victory for Sabbatini, the 31-year-old South African who won the Nissan Open last year and earlier this season had consecutive top-three finishes at the Masters, the EDS Byron Nelson Championship and Wachovia.
 
After beginning the final round tied at 11 under, Sabbatini, Furyk and the 49-year-old Langer closed with matching 3-under 67s to finish at 14 under.
 
All three hit their playoff drives into the fairway on the 433-yard 18th. Their approach shots all landed safely on the green.
 
Furyk, No. 3 in the world ranking and the only one of the top 12 players at Colonial, missed his 34-foot putt. Sabbatini then made his putt before Langer, with the shortest putt and a chance to force another hole, missed an 8-footer to the right.
 
It was the first three-man playoff ever at the Colonial, which hadn't needed extra holes since 1994 before Tim Herron won a two-hole playoff last year with Richard S. Johnson.
 
Tiger Woods had won the last three-man playoff on the PGA TOUR, beating Nathan Green and Jose Maria Olazabal at the Buick Invitational in January 2006.
 
Sabbatini finished the rain-delayed third round early Sunday with a 62, missing the tournament record by a stroke when his 8-foot birdie attempt scooted just left on No. 9, the last hole he played in the third round.
 
Pat Perez (66) finished fourth at 12-under 268, and Green (66) and Tom Lehman (68) were another stroke back.
 
Scott Verplank also was tied for the lead going into the final round in his attempt to become the only player other than Ben Hogan to win Colonial and the Byron Nelson Championship in the same year. He closed with a 71 to tie for seventh.
 
Sabbatini got to 14 under when he made a 28-foot birdie at the 171-yard 13th, but there were plenty of other shots that almost went in during the final round.
 
At No. 9 for the second time Sunday, Sabbatini's 22-foot birdie attempt stopped just an inch short of going in. Out of a greenside bunker at the 611-yard 11th hole, he blasted his shot within 6 inches and had to settle for a tap-in birdie.
 
Sabbatini escaped trouble at No. 17 when hit his approach shot out of the thick rough onto the green for a two-putt par. On the final hole of regulation, he had a 19-foot birdie putt that curled away from the hole at the last second.
 
Now he gets a much-needed break, staying home in nearby Southlake instead of going to play in the Memorial. He had withdrawn from that tournament even before winning Colonial.
 
Sabbatini had a couple of weeks off after the Masters, but the Colonial was his fifth straight event. He was coming off a closing 73 at the AT&T Classic after finishing 44th at THE PLAYERS Championship.
 
Furyk got his first top-10 finish since three consecutive tournaments before the end of February. He tied for 13th at the Masters, but hasn't been better than 28th in any other tournament since, which allowed Phil Mickelson to leapfrog him in the world ranking after Mickelson won THE PLAYERS.
 
Langer, who had only one bogey in the 29 holes in regulation he played Sunday, regained a share of the lead when he hit his approach at the 382-yard 17th hole within 4 feet for a birdie.
 
His drive to the right at No. 18 then wound up in a tromped-down area of mud, though he got relief. His approach was still short of the green, but he saved par after his chip rolled within 3 feet of the cup.
 
Langer was trying to add the plaid jacket to the two green ones he won a long time ago. He hasn't won on the PGA TOUR since getting his second green jacket at Augusta in 1993, eight years after his first.
 
An eagle and three birdies in a late four-hole stretch at the end of his third round got him to the top of the leaderboard.
 
Divots:
David Toms got to 10 under when he had six straight birdies to matching the longest streak on the PGA TOUR this season -- set by Anthony Kim in the first round. But those were the only birdies for Toms. ... Tim Petrovic started the fourth round with three straight birdie putts of 26-29 feet. He went on to a round of 66 to tie for 12th at 271. He hadn't finished better than 23rd his first 14 tournaments. ... Defending champion Tim Herron was at 4-under 276 after weekend rounds of 70 and 71. ... Rod Pampling had a hole-in-one, using a 6-iron at the 189-yard 16th.
 
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    What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

    Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

    Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

    Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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    Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

    By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

    Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

    While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

    The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

    So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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    Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

    By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

    The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

    As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

    Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

    And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

    And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

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    The Ryder Cup topped his list.

    Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

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    “Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”



    McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

    Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

    “The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

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    And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

    The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

    Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

    And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

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    The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

    The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

    More bulletin board material, too.

    Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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    Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

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