Catching up with Tiger Woods

By Golf Channel DigitalJune 20, 2014, 11:27 pm

Catching up with Tiger Woods, who announced that he will return to the PGA Tour at next week's Quicken Loans National, for which he is host.

Q: How long has he been sidelined?

A: Woods' last event was the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral, which ended March 9. Noticeably affected by back pain, Woods closed with a 78, his highest final round on the PGA Tour.

Q: What medical procedure did he have, and when?

A: On March 31, Woods underwent microdiscectomy surgery for a pinched nerve in his back.

Q: Where does he stand in his pursuit of records?

A: With 14 major championships, he remains four behind Jack Nicklaus. With 79 PGA Tour wins, he is three behind Sam Snead.

Q: How has Woods done at the two remaining major venues for 2014 - Royal Liverpool and Valhalla?

A: Woods won the most recent of his three Open Championships in 2006 at Royal Liverpool, beating Chris DiMarco by two strokes, shooting 18-under 270. He won his second of four PGA Championships in 2000 at Valhalla, holding off a determined bid by journeyman Bob May.

Q: How has Woods done in previous returns from extended absence?

A: He's had mixed results. In 2008 he did not play between the Masters and the U.S. Open, and of course he won that Open at Torrey Pines, then had knee surgery and was out almost nine months. He returned for the 2009 WGC-Match Play, losing in the second round. After the infamous late-2009 fire-hydrant incident and its aftermath, Woods was off for almost six months, returning for the 2010 Masters, where he tied for fourth. Because of leg injuries at the 2011 Masters, he took almost three months off between The Players Championship and the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, finishing tied for 37th, then sat out about seven weeks between the PGA Championship and the Open because he did not qualify for the FedEx Cup Playoffs. He tied for 30th at the Open.

Q: Woods missed this year's Masters and U.S. Open. What other majors has he missed in his career?

A: Woods has missed four other major championships because of injury:  the 2008 Open Championship (recovering from surgery on left knee); the 2008 PGA Championship (recovering from surgery on left knee); the 2011 U.S. Open (injuries to both the medial collateral ligament and Achilles tendon in his left leg); the 2011 Open Championship (left MCL and Achilles).

Q: What is Woods' Ryder Cup and FedEx Cup status?

A: He is currently 67th in the U.S. Ryder Cup team standings and 207th in the FedExCup Standings. He must be in the top nine in the U.S. Ryder Cup standings after the PGA Championship on Aug. 10 to earn an automatic spot on the team. He must be in the top 125 in the FedExCup standings after the Wyndham Championship on Aug. 17 to qualify for the Playoffs. Unless he wins in the next two months, it is very likely that he will need one of U.S. captain Tom Watson’s three picks in September in order to participate in the Ryder Cup. He will likely need around 410 FedExCup points (a pair of top-5 finishes) in these upcoming events to qualify for the first playoff event, The Barclays, which begins Aug. 21 at Ridgewood Country Club in Paramus, N.J.

Information supplied by the Golf Channel editorial research team.

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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.