Weather forces Monday finish at Pebble Beach

By Associated PressFebruary 15, 2009, 5:00 pm
2007 AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-AmPEBBLE BEACH, Calif. ' Raging wind that toppled a 40-foot pine and rain that formed puddles on the green forced the PGA Tour to postpone the final round of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, giving it a Monday finish for the first time since 2000.
 
Tee times were pushed back six hours Sunday until another band of rain arrived on the Monterey Peninsula.
 
Pebble Beach
Severe wind toppled trees and ripped apart scoreboards Sunday at Pebble. (Getty Images)
No one teed off, and there is no guarantee that the final round will be played Monday, when the forecast is for more rain and wind.
 
Dustin Johnson had a four-shot lead as he tries to join Anthony Kim as the only players under 25 with multiple PGA Tour victories. A victory would give the 24-year-old Johnson a spot in the Accenture Match Play Championship at the end of the month and the first two majors of the year, including the Masters.
 
Im ready to play, Johnson said. Obviously, Ill be real ready to play tomorrow after sitting around for a little over a day, waiting to see whats going to happen.
 
The last Monday finish at Pebble Beach came in 2000, when Tiger Woods rallied to win from five shots behind, including a seven-shot deficit with seven holes to play. One year earlier, the late Payne Stewart had a one-shot lead through 54 holes when Sunday was washed out, and the tournament was cut short to 54 holes because of a storm system that stretched to Japan.
 
Mike Weir was four shots behind, in the final group at Pebble for the second time in four years, and wasnt ready to go anywhere.
 
I want to play. Im glad they made this decision, he said. Today, tomorrow, doesnt matter. Im here to try to win this tournament.
 
A forecast of wind and rain made it even more enticing for Weir, who might need some help from Johnson.
 
It will be tough on everybody, Weir said. It will be fun to see what happens. There might be some ugly golf out there, but it will be fun to see who can handle it.
 
Mark Russell, the PGA Tour tournament director at Pebble, said if half of the field completes the fourth round on Monday, the Tour is required to complete all 72 holes no matter how long it takes.
 
If we can get a little break in this rain we might be able to play, Russell said. Were going to try.
 
Sunday was ominous from the start.
 
The wind was strong enough to knock down a 40-foot Monterey pine, which crossed part of the third fairway, and it blew over a small tower behind the 17th green used to measure shots with a laser.
 
Tee times first were delayed by two hours when a steady rain overnight soaked Pebble Beach.
 
Then, officials decided to cancel the final round of the pro-am, meaning there would not be any amateurs competing. That was done to reduce the field ' 68 pros made the cut ' with hopes they could finish on Sunday. Tee times were pushed back another hour to redo the pairings, then three more hours after wind continue to knock down tents and rain returned, forming puddles on some of the greens and in the bunkers.
 
But even with occasional bursts of sunshine in the morning, the attention shifted to the wind. The forecast was for gusts up to 45 mph Sunday afternoon, raising questions whether the ball would stay still on the green.
 
Johnson opened the tournament with a 65 at Pebble Beach, a score that would be unlikely in these conditions. Pebble Beach is the easiest of the three courses in calm conditions, the most difficult in the wind.
 
The top 25 pro-am teams compete in the final round. The last time amateurs did not play on the final day of the tournament was in 1998, but there was a good reason ' the final round was delayed nearly seven months, finishing in August, because of rain.
 
The pro-am cancellation meant Johnson and Joe Rice, an attorney, were declared the winner. They will have their names added to the plaque on the stone wall surrounding the first tee at Pebble Beach.
 
Johnson will have to wait until Monday to see if he gets the crystal trophy, too.
 

Related Links:
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  • Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

    Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

    In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

    "It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

    “Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

    “That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

    Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

    The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

    Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

    Lexi Thompson:

    Baking time!!

    A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

    David Feherty:

    Jack Nicklaus:

    GC Tiger Tracker:

    Steve Stricker:

    Golf Channel:

    Frank Nobilo:

    Ian Poulter:

    Tyrone Van Aswegen:

    Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

    By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

    Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.

    Tributes pour in for legendary caddie Sheridan

    By Randall MellNovember 23, 2017, 2:54 pm

    Tributes are pouring in as golf celebrates the life of Greg Sheridan after receiving news of his passing.

    Sheridan, a long-time LPGA caddie who worked for some of the game’s all-time greats, including Kathy Whitworth and Beth Daniel, died Wednesday in Indian Rocks Beach, Fla., at 63. He was diagnosed in July 2016 with brain and lung cancer.

    Sheridan worked the last dozen years or so with Natalie Gulbis, who expressed her grief in an Instagram post on Wednesday:

    “Greg…I miss you so much already and it hasn’t even been a day. 15+ seasons traveling the world you carried me & my bag through the highs and lows of golf and life. You were so much more than my teammate on the course…Thank you.”

    Sheridan was on Whitworth’s bag for the last of her LPGA-record 88 titles.

    “When I first came on tour, I would try to find out how many times Greg won,” Gulbis told Golfweek. “It’s a crazy number, like 50.”

    Matthew Galloway, a caddie and friend to Sheridan, summed up Sheridan’s impressive reach after caddying with him one year at the LPGA Founders Cup, where the game’s pioneers are honored.

    “Best Greg story,” Galloway tweeted on Thanksgiving morning, “coming up 18 at PHX all the founders were in their chairs. Greg goes, `Yep, caddied for her, her and her.’ Legend.”

    In a first-person column for Golf Magazine last year, Gulbis focused on Sheridan while writing about the special bond between players and caddies. She wrote that she won the “looper lottery” when she first hired Sheridan in ’04.

    “Greg and I have traveled the world, and today he is like family,” Gulbis wrote. “Sometimes, he’s a psychologist. Last year, my mom got sick and it was a distraction, but he was great. When I used to have boyfriend issues and breakup issues, he was my confidant. In a world where caddies sometimes spill secrets, Greg has kept a respectful silence, and I can’t thank him enough for that. He’s an extension of me.”

    Four months after Gulbis wrote the column, Sheridan was diagnosed with cancer.

    “The LPGA family is saddened to hear of the loss of long-time tour caddie, Greg Sheridan,” the LPGA tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and players he walked with down the fairways. #RIP.”

    Dean Herden was among the legion of caddies saddened by the news.

    “Greg was a great guy who I respected a lot and taught me some great things over the years,” Herden texted to GolfChannel.com.

    Here are some of heartfelt messages that are rolling across Twitter:

    Retired LPGA great Annika Sorenstam:

    LPGA commissioner Mike Whan in a retweet of Gulbis:

    Golf Channel reporter and former tour player Jerry Foltz:

    Christina Kim:

    LPGA caddie Shaun Clews:

    LPGA caddie Jonny Scott:

    LPGA caddie Kevin Casas:

    LPGA pro Jennie Lee: