Sorenstam Eyes Wrights Record

By Associated PressJuly 28, 2004, 4:00 pm
04 Weetabix WomenBERKSHIRE, England -- A year after completing a career grand slam at the Women's British Open, Annika Sorenstam needs to repeat to match Mickey Wright's record-setting success in majors.
 
With a victory at Sunningdale Golf Club this weekend, Sorenstam has a chance to tie Wright's record of defending her title in all four majors.
 
Wright, a Hall of Famer who retired in 1980 with 82 titles over 35 years, won the U.S. Women's Open in 1958-59, the LPGA Championship in 1960-61, the Titleholders Championship in 1961-62 and the Western Opens in 1962-63. Her career victory total is second to Kathy Whitworth's career record 88 wins.
 
Sorenstam won the LPGA Championship last month for the second straight year. She won the U.S. Women's Open in 1995-96, and the Nabisco Championship in 2001-02.
 
She is keenly aware of Wright's record.
 
'I'm trying not to think about it,' said Sorenstam, a four-time winner this year. 'I don't want to put too much pressure on myself but, obviously, I'm aware of what a win here would mean.
 
'I have tried so many times to do well here. I had been second here three times (before it became a major).'
 
Women's Open champion Meg Mallon said Sorenstam's streak of consistent performances was her most amazing achievement.
 
'The longevity of this incredible streak ... I don't think any golfer's done this in history at the level she's played,' said Mallon, who has won four majors in 18 years on tour. 'You have seen Tiger (Woods) through four years or Karrie (Webb) through three. But six years?
 
'Even in the Jack Nicklaus era, he finished out of the top 20 quite a bit. This is incredible what she's doing. Because it's looking so easy to everyone, they're not appreciating how great it is.'
 
Sorenstam has 52 career titles, including seven majors, and has finished second at the Women's Open and last week's Evian Masters in France.
 
'I feel like I'm playing better this year than last time we were here,' Sorenstam said.
 
She is coming off a stunning loss to Australia's Wendy Doolan at the Evian Masters, where Doolan made up six shots in 12 holes for a one-stroke victory.
 
'Oh, I'm over it,' Sorenstam said. 'I got outplayed by her. She had a wonderful stretch in there in which she eagled and birdied and eagled and there's not much I can do there.'
 
Sorenstam, a five-time runner-up in majors, also wants to make up for her poor performance the last time the Open was at Sunningdale, three years ago.
 
'I did not play well last time and I want to improve on that and see what happens,' said Sorenstam, who tied for 32nd, 10 shots behind winner Se Ri Pak.
 
Pak, who finished second to Sorenstam at Royal Lytham last year, is another leading contender, although she has struggled since winning at Williamsburg in early May. She has won four majors - but none the past two years.
 
'Three years ago, I won this tournament and that's a perfect memory having enjoyed it,' Pak said. 'But I'm not having a great time this year. Basically, my driver is giving me a hard time. I've spent two years trying to find the right driver.'
 
The British Open field also includes two-time champion Sherri Steinhauer, who had back-to-back victories in 1998-99 before the event became a major.
 
Three-time winner Karrie Webb pulled out of the championship, citing personal reasons.
 
Related Links:
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    Kelly, Sauers co-lead in Hawaii; Monty, Couples in mix

    By Associated PressJanuary 19, 2018, 3:52 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii - Fresh off a solid performance on Oahu, Jerry Kelly shot an 8-under 64 on the Big Island on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    The 51-year-old Kelly, who tied for 14th at the PGA Tour's Sony Open last week in Honolulu, birdied five of his final seven holes to shoot 30 on the back nine at Hualalai. He won twice last season, his first on the over-50 tour.

    Gene Sauers also shot 64, going bogey-free amid calm conditions. Thirty-two of the 44 players broke par in the limited-field event, which includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie were one shot back, and Fred Couples, Kevin Sutherland and Kirk Triplett were another shot behind.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was in the middle of the pack after a 69.

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    Rahm (62) fires career low round

    By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2018, 12:03 am

    The scores were predictably low during the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge, where the top-ranked player in the field currently sits atop the standings. Here's how things look after the first day in Palm Springs as Jon Rahm is out to an early advantage:

    Leaderboard: Jon Rahm (-10), Austin Cook (-9), Andrew Landry (-9), Jason Kokrak (-9), Brandon Harkins (-8), Martin Piller (-8), Aaron Wise (-8), Beau Hossler (-8)

    What it means: Rahm is coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago at Kapalua, and he picked up right where he left off with a 10-under 62 at La Quinta Country Club. It marked his lowest career round on the PGA Tour, and it gave him a one-shot lead heading to the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Cook is the only player within two shots of Rahm who has won already on Tour.

    Round of the day: Rahm got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under, and he made it around La Quinta without dropping a shot. The 62 bettered his previous career low on Tour by two shots and it included an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole to go along with eight birdies.

    Best of the rest: Cook was a winner earlier this season at the RSM Classic, and he's now in the mix for trophy No. 2 following a 9-under 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Like Rahm, he opened with a seven-hole stretch at 6 under and turned in a scorecard without a bogey. He'll now head to the more difficult Stadium Course for his second round.

    Biggest disappointment: Patrick Reed blitzed the three-course rotation in Palm Springs en route to his first career Tour title back in 2014, but he's unlikely to repeat that feat after opening with a 2-over 74 on the Nicklaus Tournament course. Reed made only one birdie against three bogeys and was one of only 32 players in the 156-man field who failed to break par in the opening round.

    Main storyline heading into Friday: Rahm deserves the spotlight, as he entered the week as one of the event's headliners and did nothing to lose that billing in the opening round. But the pack of contenders is sure to keep pace, while players like Phil Mickelson (-2) will look to put up a low score in order to build some momentum heading into the weekend.

    Shot of the day: Wesley Bryan's 7-under 65 on the Nicklaus Tournament course was helped in large part by an eagle on the par-4 10th, where he holed a 54-degree wedge from 112 yards away. Bryan went on to birdie the next hole amid a five-hole stretch of 5 under play.

    Quote of the day: "Shot 10 under par. There's not much more I can ask for." - Rahm

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    Recent winner Cook contending at CareerBuilder

    By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:45 pm

    Patton Kizzire is currently the only two-time PGA Tour winner this season, but Austin Cook hopes to join him this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

    Cook won for the first time in November at the RSM Classic, a victory that catapaulted him from the Web.com Tour graduate category into an entirely new echelon. Cook notched a pair of top-25 finishes over the last two weeks in Hawaii, and he's again in the mix after an opening 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course left him one shot behind Jon Rahm.

    "Today was great," Cook told reporters. "The conditions were perfect, but I always loved desert golf and I was just hitting the ball well and seeing good lines on the greens and hitting good putts."

    Cook got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under highlighted by an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole. He briefly entertained the notion of a sub-60 round after birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 before closing with six pars and a birdie.


    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


    Cook was a relative unknown before his victory at Sea Island earlier this season, but now with the flexibility and confidence afforded by a win he hopes to build on his burgeoning momentum this week in California.

    "That was a big, proud moment for myself, knowing that I can finish a tournament," Cook said. "I think it was one of those things that I've proven to myself that now I can do it, and it just meant the world to me."

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    Photo: Fleetwood's phone cover is picture of Bjorn

    By Jason CrookJanuary 18, 2018, 11:40 pm

    There's phone covers and then there are Phone Covers.

    Paul Casey has himself a Phone Cover, showing off the protective case that features a picture of his wife at last year's U.S. Open.

    Now, it appears, Tommy Fleetwood has joined the movement.

    Fleetwood, last year's season-long Race to Dubai winner, has a phone cover with a picture of Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn on it. And not even a current Thomas Bjorn. This is a young Bjorn. A hair-having Bjorn.

    @tommyfleetwood_1

    A post shared by Alex Noren (@alexnoren1) on

    The 26-year-old is a virtual lock for this year's European Ryder Cup team, but just in case, he's carrying around a phone with a picture of the team captain attached to the back of it.

    It's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.