Goose Over Tiger at Augusta

By Brian HewittMarch 28, 2008, 4:00 pm
The Comebacker is geeked for the Masters Tournament. He is not hyped for the Masters, an event that doesnt need any hype. He is a little hyper about the years first major. But thats a healthy thing at this time of year in golf, what with the weather starting to change and the dogwood starting to bloom.
The Masters helps remind us in golf that we are alive. Better, it rejuvenates us. It is a renewal.
Without further ado:
Jon writes: I am going to go on record early.Watch out for Retief Goosen. His rhythm is back, posture problems fixed and he seems to be putting very well. Essentially MIA for a year or so'look for him to challenge at the Masters.
The ComebackerThe secret is out: Goosen shot 68-68 on the weekend at Bay Hill two Sundays ago. Then he backed that up with a T2 at Doral, a championship he probably could have won if he hadnt run out of holes. Goosen is back with his old Tracy putter made by YES.Interestingly, the company named that putter model after Goosens wife, Tracy.

Wade writes: I think the missed story line from Monday was that once again, Adam Scott completely crumbled in the heat of battle. His putter woes may not yet be Sergio-esque but I think hes approaching that level. For all of Butchs accolades about him, the truth is that hes merely the best of all the journeymen.
The ComebackerJourneymen do not get to No. 6 in the world rankings. And as for the putting, Tiger had four three-putts during Doral week and I dont see anybody comparing him to Sergio Garcia. But the fact remains that its time for Adam Scott, at age 27, to step up in the majors. Both he and his instructor, Butch Harmon, are keenly aware of that.

Lon writes: I think that players should bid their own cash for a spot to play on the Ryder Cup team.and in The Skins Game. That seems to be the currency they all understand. That money could be donated to a player fund for players families that really need some help..It might even be the incentive to play their guts out..
The ComebackerOr it might be an incentive for Donald Trump to try and buy his way onto the team. Seriously, though, I like the charity aspect of your suggestion.

Jane writes:Ive noticed that Tigers play is usually not up to par when he is paired with a slow player or when he is forced to wait on the tee due to slow play ahead or delays due to rulings on shots. Is this just my perception or have you made the same observation?
The Comebacker I have observed that Tiger usually plays better when the photographers wait until he has completed his swing before triggering their cameras. By the way, the blue streak that Woods loosed after the most recent photog incident at Doral has now been widely reported. Woods talked about it at length on ESPN. And there wasnt a hint of an apology. Question: Is Woods within his rights to purple the air with sailors language when he is wronged? Or does he need to curb his tongue in those situations? And should we hold the public Woods up to a different standard on this score than we hold ourselves to in games at our home courses?

James writes: I cant remember the hole because it took so long but Sean OHair actually took over 1.5 minutes to hit a tee ball at Bay Hill. Sean proceeded to take five practice swings behind the ball, then took his stance and after 15 seconds over the ball he then decided to change clubs and went through the same routine, a little quicker this time, once again and then skanked his shot into the left hand bunker. I cheered! This is why we are losing the youth and seniors (me) in the game! I couldnt take it anymore and turned it off before I fell asleep. I am starting to side with Rory on this.
The Comebacker Hmmmm. More slow play backlash. When seniors start cheering skanked shots, maybe its time to take this thing a little more seriously.

Joe writes:Jack Nicklaus has been and continues to be my golf idol for all time, but in my humble opinion I dare say that Tiger, by the time he is done playing, will be twice as good as Jack
The ComebackerTiger cannot be considered twice as good as Jack until he wins twice as many major championships as Nicklaus. Thats setting the bar at 36. Its doable for Woods. But thats one bet I wouldnt take Tigers side on.

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    Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

    By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

    The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

    They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

    Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

    Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

    Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

    ''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

    The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

    In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

    Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

    Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

    By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

    Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

    Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

    Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

    Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

    It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

    The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

    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.

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    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.