What does Finchems appearance in China mean

By Associated PressNovember 10, 2009, 9:53 pm

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP)—Six months after the PGA Tour officially gotinvolved in the HSBC Champions, commissioner Tim Finchem was front and center ata news conference and later at the TV trophy presentation to Phil Mickelson .

Small wonder some referred to it as the start of the PGA Tour’s “Asianinvasion.”

Finchem said his 18-day trip to Asia—part of it a vacation with his wife,Holly—was to meet sponsors and clients he had not visited in some time, and tomeet potential customers. Even so, his comments at a Sunday news conference ledto one question.

Where will all this lead?

This was the first World Golf Championship in China, even though the PGATour does not yet recognize it as official and might not for a few years.Finchem said it “may evolve in the next two or three years.” How that willmake a difference remains a mystery unless he’s waiting for more PGATour-sanctioned events in Asia.

Finchem said he has been speaking with Zhang Xiaonang, executive vicepresident of the China Golf Association, about three ways to grow the game—through a First Tee facility in China, by getting the tour involved in buildingTPC golf courses and helping stage tournaments.

Finchem said Zhang has asked whether the PGA Tour could sanction an event,and that the tour has agreed to work with “other members” of the InternationalFederation of PGA Tours.

That includes European tour chief executive George O’Grady, who already hasestablished a presence in China and elsewhere in Asia, and the Asian tour, whichis battling with OneAsia for support from the China Golf Association.

One thing appeared certain: While the world of golf is larger than ever, itcan appear to be shrinking. Three tours (Europe, Asian, United States) indeedcan make for a crowd.

APPLEBY’S YEAR: Stuart Appleby , who lives in Orlando, Fla., is No. 134 onthe money list and could have kept his card by finishing at least 15th at Disneythis week in the final PGA Tour event of the year.

Appleby also is from Australia, and he decided against Disney to play atKingston Heath in the Australian Masters this year.

He said Tuesday it was an easy choice.

“I already had plans for my junior foundation, and Tiger has committed tospend an hour with the kids, which is awesome,” Appleby said. “Plus, I thinkthis is one of the top two courses in the world. I really had more to gain thanlose.”

Appleby has not decided whether to use one of his exemptions from the careermoney list, preferring to save them for later. He said he would let the tourknow in two weeks. Appleby might spend 2010 asking for sponsor exemptions, whichshouldn’t be too hard to find for an eight-time winner who has not finishedlower than 55th on the money list since his rookie season.

As to what happened this year, he isn’t quite sure.

“I think I just fell into some bad habits,” Appleby said. “I forgot aboutthe innocence of playing golf. I spent too much time trying to fix something. Itwas like a year of the dog chasing his tail.”

CADDIE OF THE YEAR: In one of the best evenings in golf, Billy Foster wasawarded the “Caddie of the Year” on the European tour for his work with LeeWestwood on and off the golf course.

It was a festive occasion for the caddies, with lesser awards handed out forsuch things as best club selection and best excuse. Westwood helped host theevening with Sky Sports commentator Richard Boxall, but perhaps even moreimpressive was a dozen tour players who stayed well into the evening, such asPadraig Harrington , Paul Casey , and even Americans Nick Watney and Brian Gay .

Foster, who also has caddied for Seve Ballesteros , Darren Clarke and even ata Presidents Cup for Tiger Woods , has been on the bag as Westwood leads the Raceto Dubai with two tournaments left. In July, he raised about $130,000 forcharity by walking from Loch Lomond to Turnberry with Westwood’s golf bag on hisback.

OGILVY’S CLUBS: Geoff Ogilvy will be switching over to Titleist for the 2010season.

Ogilvy’s deal with Cobra expires this year, and parent company Acushnet ismoving away from a Cobra presence on tour. Ogilvy, who has won three World GolfChampionships and a U.S. Open in the last four years, said it was a sensiblemove.

“It’s in the family,” he said, noting Titleist also is under the Acushnetumbrella and he would continue playing the ball. “If you’re going to be makinga change from one manufacturer to another, that’s the least stressful.”

He said he has been practicing with a new blade from Titleist, and that theonly significant change would be the driver.

MIA DOWN UNDER: Robert Allenby made history Down Under in 2005 as the onlyplayer to win the Australian Triple Crown—victories in the Masters, PGA andAustralian Open.

He won’t be able to repeat that this year. The Melbourne native is notplaying any of them.

Allenby has played the last three weeks on the European tour—Spain,Singapore and Shanghai—and needed a week off before the Dubai WorldChampionship. He also decided to play in the Nedbank Challenge in South Africa,opposite the Australian Open.

As for the Australian PGA the following week? Allenby said he needed tospend time with his ailing mother-in-law, although he had problems last yearwith how the tournament was run.

DIVOTS: Steve Marino finished his week in China and headed home to restbefore venturing out again. He is playing consecutive weeks in December at theAustralian Open and the Australian PGA. “I think it will be cool,” Marinosaid. “You’ve got to do this while you’re young.” … The Australian Masterswas added to the European tour schedule last month, giving Rod Pampling (No. 71)one last chance to crack into the top 60 and qualify for the Dubai WorldChampionship.

STAT OF THE WEEK: Tiger Woods has never finished out of the top 10 in strokeplay at the World Golf Championships.

FINAL WORD: “Getting away from golf is good for you. It gets the grumps outof you.”—Geoff Ogilvy.

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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.

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Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

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. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

President at the Presidents Cup

Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

Cart on the green

Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

Trump golf properties


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers

Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm