Westwood Poulter lead Woods at Augusta

By Doug FergusonApril 10, 2010, 12:26 am

AUGUSTA, Ga. – Tiger Woods still has his game. Now he finds out if his name high on the leaderboard means what it once did.

In a Masters that gets more compelling by the day, two faces of England's golf revival  – Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter  – handled a tougher Augusta National on Friday to share the lead as both chase their first major championship.

Poulter, who once boasted that it would be just him and Woods when he reached his potential, made his only bogey on the 18th hole for a second straight 68. Westwood had everything from an eagle to a double bogey in his wild round of 69.

They were at 8-under 136, the first time either of them has been in the lead in a major.

Two shots behind was Woods, a position that has surprised just about everybody except him.

Ian Poulter
Ian Poulter made his way to the top of the leaderboard Friday. (Getty Images)
'I usually put myself in contention most of the time here,' Woods said after a 2-under 70. 'And this year, I'm right there.'

If that's not enough, Phil Mickelson is along for the ride.

Mickelson needed a birdie on the 18th hole to be paired with Woods, just as they were in the final round last year. His 65-foot putt banged off the back of the cup before spinning away, giving Lefty a 71.

Woods and Mickelson were at 138, along with K.J. Choi, Ricky Barnes and Anthony Kim, the sassy young American coming off a victory last week in the Houston Open.

Woods has captured so much attention at this Masters because of his swift and spectacular downfall from a sex scandal that kept him out of golf the last five months. He has been humbled by confessions of cheating on his wife, and one of the lingering questions was whether his personal chaos would make him seem less invincible on the golf course.

He has won the Masters all three times when going into the weekend in a tie for third or better.

Y.E. Yang, who rallied to beat Woods at the PGA Championship eight months ago, had a 72 and was at 5-under 139.

'There's a great buzz on the golf course,' said Poulter, who played the first two days in front of Woods. 'I was happy to tee off when I did. The crowds are 10-deep. That's always good. I think the tournament is a good one.'

And it might get even better.

Westwood pulled himself out of a deep slump to regain his status as the best in Europe, and he has been closing in on an elusive major. He came within one putt of getting into a playoff in the U.S. Open in 2008 and the British Open last year.

'It makes me sort of feel that I can contend in these big events now that my game is up to this level,' Westwood said. 'All in all, I'm delighted the way things are going.'

It was a wild ride, for sure.

Westwood moved quickly to the top of the leaderboard with a 6-iron into 18 inches for eagle on the second hole, and he had two tries at an eagle at the par 5s on the back nine. But there also was a hook into the trees on the 14th that led to double bogey, and another tee shot into the pines on the 18th that kept him from the outright lead.

Westwood didn't seem the least bit concerned that Woods was lurking.

'I played with Tiger the last round of the U.S. Open (both shot 73 at Torrey Pines), so that's not really an issue,' he said. 'And I learned a few things, stuff I'm not going to share, because I think if you get into these situations and learn stuff, what's the point of passing it on? That's what going through these experiences is all about.'

Poulter began making his move on the par-3 12th with a shot over the bunker to about 8 feet for birdie. There was muted applause, partly because it's difficult for the fans to see the green, and partly because most of them weren't watching.

'Tiger was on the 11th green,' Poulter said with a grin.

Few players are as brash as Poulter, starting with his stylish, colorful clothes. He wore all pink in the final round of the 2006 U.S. Open, a bold move before a New York gallery, and once wore Union Jack trousers at the British Open.

Asked what would go best with a green jacket, Poulter didn't hesitate.

'Absolutely anything,' he said.

As for that boast about joining Woods atop the world ranking ranking one day?

'If I win this week, I'll probably go to No. 2, which would be lovely,' Poulter said. 'So I guess it's a work in progress. I'm working towards that. So we'll see.'

 

Getty Images

Angela hits Sergio in stride on field at Superdome

By Grill Room TeamDecember 18, 2017, 3:22 pm

Sergio and Angela Garcia's super 2017 keeps getting more ... Super ... Dome. (+1 awful blog lede.)

The couple started the year with Sergio's win at the Masters, then embarked on a whirlwind green jacket media tour, then kicked off El Clasico, then attended Wimbledon, then got married, then announced they were expecting their first child ...


2017 Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia


And now, they're throwing each other passes on the New Orleans Saints' home turf at the Superdome.

Man, it must be so cool do that at the Silverdome. ... ... ... I'm sorry, it is the Superdome, brothers.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 1, Justin Thomas

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 1:00 pm

He won a major, captured the FedExCup and was named the PGA Tour’s Player of the Year. It should come as no surprise that Justin Thomas holds the top spot on our Newsmakers list for 2017.

Thomas entered the year ranked outside the top 20, and few might have pegged him for a transcendent campaign. But he kicked off January with a win in Hawaii, added another before leaving the Aloha State and never looked back.

Thomas’ seminal moment came in August when he captured the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow for his breakthrough major title. One month after greeting Jordan Spieth behind the final green at Royal Birkdale, this time it was Thomas’ turn to have friends stick around to snap pictures with the trophy that signaled his arrival among golf’s upper echelon.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


In addition to racking up the hardware – five in total, including the inaugural CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in his first start of the new wraparound season – Thomas dazzled with style. His runaway win at the Sony Open included an opening-round 59, and his third-round 63 at Erin Hills marked the first time anyone had ever shot 9 under on a U.S. Open venue.

Thomas’ consistency was rewarded at East Lake, when a runner-up finish at the Tour Championship netted him the season-long title and $10 million prize. It was in the subsequent press conference where he shared the goals list he had written into his cell phone in February, having ticked off nearly every one. It showed a dedicated attention to detail as well the tactical approach with which Thomas had steered his rapid ascent.

Heading into a new year, he’s now very clearly entrenched as one of the world’s best. And as his career progresses, it’s likely we’ll look back at 2017 as the point where Thomas first transformed great potential into eye-popping results.

Win No. 1: Title defense at the CIMB Classic

Article: Thomas (64) rallies to defend CIMB title


Win Nos. 2 and 3: The Hawaiian double

Article: Thomas refuses to let disastrous hole derail TOC win

Article: Worst week ever ends with another title at Sony Open


Record Round No. 1: 59 at the Sony Open

Article: Thomas becomes youngest player to shoot 59

Take a look: Thomas’ scorecard from his amazing 59


Record Round No. 2: 63 at the U.S. Open

Article: Thomas sets U.S. Open record with 9-under 63


Temporary Slide: Open MC makes it three in a row

Watch: Thomas loses club, makes 9, misses Open cut


Mr. Major (and win No. 4): PGA champ at Quail Hollow

Article: Thomas joins the club – the major club


Win No. 5: Dell Technologies Championship

Article: Thomas wins the battle of buddies over Spieth


The $10 Million Man: FedExCup champ


Biggest Win of All? Player of the Year


And One to Grow On: Wins at CJ Cup in 2017-18 season

Article: Thomas caps torrid 12-month run with CJ Cup win


Photo Galleries: Best of ...

Best of: Justin Thomas and Jillian Wisniewski

Best of: Justin Thomas through the years

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.