That's a relief: Woods gets in his own event

By Associated PressOctober 11, 2011, 10:29 pm

LOS ANGELES – Tiger Woods was awfully happy he could announce his own name in the field of the Chevron World Challenge.

Woods expressed gratitude to the tournament committee Tuesday after squeaking into the event he hosts. His world ranking barely stayed in the top 50 last month, just high enough to qualify for an exemption, and he’ll be at Sherwood Country Club in seven weeks for the final event of his so-far winless season.

After a brutal two-year stretch of personal turmoil and reinvention, Woods appears eager to continue his climb back from his latest low. Woods has dropped from No. 49 to 52 since clinching a spot the Chevron field, and he finished tied for 30th last week in Northern California in the Open, his first tournament in nearly two months.

“I had (rankings) points rolling off from ’09,” Woods said at a news conference in Hollywood. “I had a very good year that year. I won, what, seven times around the world, so all those points are coming off. Unfortunately, I fell quite a bit, and I fell fast. Good news is, by playing next year, I have no points coming off, so I can start rebuilding.”

Rebuilding is the theme of Woods’ life these days as he moves forward from injuries to his left knee and Achilles tendon, along with the disintegration of his marriage and public image. He plans to play a full schedule in 2012, but he’ll play in the Australian Open and the Presidents Cup in the next few weeks before returning to his native California for the Chevron tournament.

“I’m really looking forward to going down to Australia and playing because now I have that feeling of playing again, not just hitting ball after ball after ball on the range,” Woods said.

Woods will join an American-heavy Chevron field of 18 in Thousand Oaks, including Steve Stricker, Jason Day, Matt Kuchar, Nick Watney and PGA Championship winner Keegan Bradley. FedEx Cup champion Bill Haas also received an exemption.

Woods has won the tournament four times, but lost in a playoff last year after Graeme McDowell rallied from four strokes back in the final round. Although he blew a late lead, Woods remains proud of his performance while he was still rebuilding his swing with coach Sean Foley.

“I had one golf shot only, and that was it,” Woods said. “That was going to be a draw. I couldn’t hit a fade. What we were working on at the time limited me to only hitting one golf shot. I’m like, ‘OK, well, how am I supposed to play this week? I’m going to have to rely on my putter.’ So I hit the ball well.”

The tournament probably could have put Woods in its field this year even if his ranking hadn’t stayed high enough for an exemption under the current rules, but such a move might have prevented the tournament from awarding ranking points.

While Woods’ return to golf dominance still is far from certain, he remains the sport’s biggest icon. Several hundred fans showed up Tuesday to watch Woods put on a good-natured putting exhibition in the middle of the Hollywood and Highland retail complex built around the Kodak Theatre, the home of the Academy Awards.

After several fans competed for the chance to walk inside the ropes with Woods during the first round at Sherwood, he competed against the winner on a large artificial putting green. The crowd included at least two Tiger impersonators – no surprise in the mall next-door to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre and its motley collection of celebrity lookalikes.

Woods interacted with fans and engaged in a little trash-talk with the putting competitors, appearing at ease after a fan threw a hot dog in Woods’ direction last Sunday in San Martin.

As the world’s most popular golfer, Woods is aware of the risks he takes every weekend.

“Part of the lure of our sport is our access,” Woods said. “Fans can literally reach out and touch you. You don’t ever touch football players unless they jump in the stands. That personal interaction is what makes golf so special. We’ve been very fortunate over the years to have everything turn out positively.

“This guy was just trying to gain attention for himself, which he did. I’ve had another fan throw an orange in Phoenix one year. Unfortunately, people have a few of their libations of choice, and do things that they probably don’t normally do.”

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

Getty Images

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 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.

Getty Images

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.