Watney leads Barracuda by 3 points through 36

By Associated PressAugust 2, 2014, 1:28 am

RENO, Nev. – Nick Watney increased his lead to three points Friday in the Barracuda Championship, scoring eight points in the modified Stableford event at Montreux to push his two-day total to 26.

Players receive eight points for double eagle, five for eagle, two for birdie, zero for par, minus-one for bogey and minus-three for double bogey or worse.

Watney had five birdies and two bogeys in the morning session after making nine birdies in his bogey-free first round.

''The course was great and I played pretty well,'' Watney said. ''I would have liked to have made a few more putts, but overall, if you would have told me 26 points after two days I would take it every time.''

Geoff Ogilvy was second. Wes Roach was third at 22, and Tommy Gainey and Tim Wilkinson had 21. Ogilvy had a seven-point round, Roach and Gainey each scored 10 points, and Wilkinson had five.


Barracuda Championship: Articles, videos and photos


Watney is making his first appearance in the event since 2008 after failing to qualify for the World Golf Championship-Bridgestone Invitational. He's 124th in the FedEx Cup standings, with the top 125 getting into The Barclays - the playoff opener that he won in 2012 for the last of his five PGA Tour titles.

''I got to keep going,'' Watney said. ''We've got a long way to go and just try to keep my head down and stay focused on where I'm at.''

He was asked what he learned after two rounds.

''That I'm playing well and that this is a really hard course to walk,'' Watney said.

Ogilvy, the Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, earned five points with an eagle on the par-5 13th, gave back a point with a bogey on No. 14 and birdied No. 16 in the afternoon. On Thursday, he had eight birdies in a bogey-free round.

''It was tricky,'' Ogilvy said. ''The elevation makes it hard anyway, or awkward, and you add in that wind that goes from nothing to 20 miles an hour and back, gusting and spinning around down different directions, it feels like. It's really awkward out there.''

Making his first appearance in the event since 2002, Ogilvy won the last of his seven PGA Tour titles in 2010. He has only two top-25 finishes this season and is 151st in the FedEx Cup standings.

''I'm hitting the ball well,'' Ogilvy said. ''Obviously, if I hole a few putts, hopefully, I'll be there at the end.''

Lexi 'applaud's USGA, R&A for rules change

By Randall MellDecember 11, 2017, 5:15 pm

Lexi Thompson’s pain may prove to be the rest of golf’s gain.

David Rickman, the R&A’s executive director of governance, acknowledged on Golf Channel’s "Morning Drive" Monday that the new protocols that will eliminate the use of TV viewer call-ins and emails to apply penalties was hastened by the controversy following Thompson’s four-shot penalty at the ANA Inspiration in early April. The new protocols also set up rules officials to monitor TV broadcasts beginning next year.

“Clearly, that case has been something of a focus point for us,” Rickman said.

Thompson reacted to the new protocols in an Instagram post.

“I applaud the USGA and the R&A for their willingness to revise the Rules of Golf to address certain unfortunate situations that have arisen several times in the game of golf,” Thompson wrote. “In my case, I am thankful no one else will have to deal with an outcome such as mine in the future.”

Thompson was penalized two shots for improperly returning her ball to its mark on a green during Saturday’s round after a viewer emailed LPGA officials during Sunday’s broadcast. She was penalized two more shots for signing an incorrect scorecard for her Saturday round. Thompson ultimately lost in a playoff to So Yeon Ryu.

The new protocols will also eliminate the additional two-shot penalty a player receives for failing to include a penalty when a player was unaware of the penalty.

Shortly after the ANA Inspiration, the USGA and R&A led the formation of a video review working group, which included the PGA Tour, LPGA, European Tour, Ladies European Tour and PGA of America.

Also, just three weeks after Thompson was hit with the four-shot penalty, the USGA and R&A released a new Rules of Golf decision decision (34-3/10) limiting video evidence in two ways:

1. If an infraction can’t be seen with the naked eye, there’s no penalty, even if video shows otherwise.

2. If a tournament committee determines that a player does “all that can be reasonably expected to make an accurate estimation or measurement” in determining a line or position to play from or to spot a ball, then there will be no penalty even if video replay later shows that to be wrong.

While the USGA and R&A said the new decision wasn’t based on Thompson’s ANA incident, LPGA players immediately began calling it the “Lexi Rule.”

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PGA Tour, LPGA react to video review rules changes

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 1:32 pm

The USGA and R&A announced on Monday updates to the Rules of Golf, including no longer accepting call-ins relating to violations. The PGA Tour and LPGA, which were both part of a working group of entities who voted on the changes, issued the following statements:

PGA Tour:

The PGA Tour has worked closely with the USGA and R&A on this issue in recent years, and today's announcement is another positive step to ensure the Rules of Golf align with how the game is presented and viewed globally. The PGA Tour will adopt the new Local Rule beginning January 1, 2018 and evolve our protocols for reviewing video evidence as outlined.

LPGA:

We are encouraged by the willingness of the governing bodies to fully vet the issues and implement real change at a pace much quicker than the sport has seen previously. These new adaptations, coupled with changes announced earlier this year, are true and meaningful advances for the game. The LPGA plans to adopt fully the protocols and new Local Rule as outlined.

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Sharma closes on Monday, wins Joburg Open

By Associated PressDecember 11, 2017, 12:43 pm

JOHANNESBURG – Shubhankar Sharma won his first European Tour title by a shooting 3-under 69 Monday in the final round of the weather-delayed Joburg Open.

The 21-year-old Indian resumed his round on the eighth green after play was halted early Sunday afternoon because of storms. He parred that hole, birdied No. 9 and made par on every hole on the back nine.


Full-field scores from the Joburg Open


Sharma finished at 23-under 264, three strokes ahead of the pack, and qualified for next year's British Open, too.

''I actually wasn't going to come here about a week ago ... so I'm really happy that I came,'' said Sharma, who shot 61 in the second round. ''I don't think I'm ever going forget my first time in South Africa.''

Erik van Rooyen (66) was second, three strokes ahead of Shaun Norris (65) and Tapio Pulkkanen (68).

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 pm