Bradley (67) among trio of Valspar co-leaders

By Will GrayMarch 10, 2016, 11:19 pm

The Copperhead Course is always a tricky venue, but Thursday's blustery conditions made things even more taxing during the first round of the Valspar Championship. Here's how things look outside Tampa, where Keegan Bradley headlines a trio of co-leaders:

Leaderboard: Keegan Bradley (-4), Ken Duke (-4), Charles Howell III (-4), Chesson Hadley (-3), Charley Hoffman (-2), Chez Reavie (-2)

What it means: Bradley and Duke both played in the morning wave when conditions were their most difficult, but neither had much of an issue at Innisbrook. They were joined late in the day by Howell, who continues his strong start to the season, but the real winner Thursday was the course as only 24 players among the 144-man field managed to break par.

Round of the day: Bradley has struggled for much of the season, with five missed cuts in eight starts, but he got off to a hot start in the opening round with birdies on five of his first 13 holes to briefly move three shots clear of the field. While he dropped a shot on No. 6, his 15th hole of the day, a 4-under 67 was still good enough to give him a share of the lead as he looks for his first win in nearly four years.

Best of the rest: Howell strung together seven straight top-25 finishes earlier this season, and he is again in the mix after matching Bradley and Duke with an opening 67. Howell's round was bogey-free and included two birdies on each nine, including an accurate approach to the par-5 14th that left him a kick-in birdie to earn a share of the lead.

Biggest disappointment: Defending champ Jordan Spieth returned to Tampa in search of some momentum, but he didn't find any during a 5-over 76. Little went right for a visibly frustrated Spieth, who bogeyed five of his first seven holes and now sits nine shots off the lead and in danger of missing his second cut in the last three starts.

Main storyline heading into Friday: There are storylines on both sides of the standings, as Bradley remains a player to keep an eye on. Five years since his major breakthrough, he now sits outside the bubble for the WGC-Dell Match Play but could earn a spot with a timely performance this week. Spieth, meanwhile, will be fighting to make the cut and will receive plenty of attention as each round - heck, each hole - is now viewed as insight into his state for the upcoming Masters.

Shot of the day: Blayne Barber elicited a roar on the par-4 12th hole when his approach from 148 yards took one hop and landed in the hole for an unexpected eagle. The shot sparked a tumultuous inward half for Barber, who was third last month at the Honda Classic and who opened with an even-par 71.

Quote of the day: "It's tough. I need to go out there and play better, so it's really fun to feel the buzz a little when you're having a good round. It's not much fun when you're 3 over after six and you're grinding." - Bradley

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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 GolfChannel.com 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.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

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.

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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.