Annika Wins First - Obviously Shes Behind

By George WhiteApril 8, 2003, 4:00 pm
The number has reached 43 now. Thats the number of wins for Annika Sorenstam. She didnt win this year until ' what - her third tournament?
 
That quieted a lot of worry and gnashing of teeth from the general populace whove come to believe Sorenstam will win every time she enters ' or at the least, every other time. In her first tournament this year, she dawdled around to tie for third. In the next, she could do no better than finish second. The nerve of her!
 
But everyone can pipe down now. She has won again. She went through the field at the Office Depot to win by four strokes. For those who think her whole season rides on May 18-June 1, when she will tee it up with the men of the PGA Tour, she is again in step. She is batting one-for-three, and that is exactly where she was last year ' she won one of her first three, won her second in her fourth time out.
 
Actually, one-for-three is about what shes done the last three seasons. Shes played 70 times the last three years on the LPGA and won 24 times ' 73 and 25, if you count this season. She won two more times on the Ladies European Tour in three tries last year, so she won exactly half the time ' 13 victories in 26 events ' she entered.
 
It gets pretty amazing when you add in her runner-up or third-place finishes. In those 26 tournaments, she finished in the top three 20 times.
 
If Tiger Woods had done that well on the PGA Tour, he would have finished in the top three in 14 of the 18 tournaments he played. Battling an injured knee, Tiger finished in the top-three nine times ' 11 in you count the two European Tour events he played. That certainly isnt to be perceived as a slap at Woods, merely to emphasize what Sorenstam has done. She is in contention for the title week after week after week.
 
Its amazing, isnt it, when you consider the Se Ri Paks and Karrie Webbs that have to be accommodated, too.
 
You have to remember that the other players are getting better, said Sorenstam, so I am not the only one who is hungry.
 
Of course, to step on the first tee and think I have to win 14 times to have a better season ' thats a lot of pressure. I love to win, but my No. 1 goal is to be a better player. I can control that. I cant control what other players do or how they play.
 
Shes only 5-feet-6, small by modern-athlete standards. Gym workouts the last year have left her strong, though. Woman who want to compete with her have to get a lot stronger, or they will be left further and further behind. This train is leaving the station, and if you dont get on board now, the only thing youll see is the caboose.
 
We all have to work more hard, says Pak in her delightfully fractured English, because she is much stronger and everyone thinks about it (the conditioning) more. She is always consistent and she is mentally stronger on the course. At the same time, I work harder and have more confidence ' pretty good things.
 
Yes, indeed, pretty good things. But Sorenstam believes pretty good things mean shooting 54, the ultimate as far as she is concerned. Is it possible? No, of course not. Is it possible for Annika? Yes, it is, says Sorenstam.
 
I believe I can 18 greens, she says, every fairway. You know, Vision 54, which means you birdie every hole. Thats in the back of my mind.
 
I want to putt better, chip better. That day when I hit 18 greens and one putt, Ill know Im a complete player.
 
If it ever happens, she will be as good the best player on the PGA Tour, notwithstanding Mr. Woods. But she has a long way to go, as her 68, 72 and 71 last week suggests. Nary a 54 among those scores. But ' her career isnt over, not by a long shot, she suggests.
 
Will that ever happen? she asks rhetorically. Im not sure, but its possible.

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:

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:

Fitzpatrick one back in 2018 Euro Tour opener

By Associated PressNovember 23, 2017, 1:37 pm

HONG KONG – S.S.P. Chawrasia had six birdies and a bogey Thursday for a 5-under 65 and a one-stroke lead at the Hong Kong Open, the first event of the 2018 European Tour season.

Playing in sunny but breezy conditions at the Hong Kong Golf Club, the greens had the players struggling to gauge the approach.

''Very tough conditions today,'' Chawrasia said. ''It's very firm greens, to be honest. I'm just trying to hit the second shot on the green and trying to make it like a two-putt.''


Full-field scores from the UBS Hong Kong Open


Shubhankar Sharma and Matthew Fitzpatrick (both 66) were one shot behind, while seven others were tied for fourth a further stroke behind.

''Hit it great tee to green,'' Fitzpatrick said. ''I think I had like seven or eight chances inside 15 feet, and on a day like today when it's so windy and such a tough golf course, with how tight it is, yeah, it was a good day.''

Justin Rose, who won the title in 2015, shot was 2 under with five birdies and three bogeys.

''I think the course played a couple shots harder than it typically does,'' Rose said. ''I like this course. I think it offers plenty of birdie opportunities.''

Masters champion Sergio GarciaRafa Cabrera Bello and defending champion Sam Brazel (69) were in a group of 16 at 1 under.