Golf action compelling even in offseason

By Jason SobelNovember 30, 2014, 7:46 pm

Each week, takes a look back at the week in golf. In this edition of After Further Review, our writers weigh in on the quality of golf's current "offseason," the intriguing future of Jordan Spieth and the international expansion of the PGA Tour.

The ebbs and flows of the eternal golf schedule have once again reached an improbable peak during an unlikely time, as we briefly interrupt this holiday shopping season for some compelling action on the links.

Last week saw Henrik Stenson hold off Rory McIlroy at the Race to Dubai finale; this weekend found Jordan Spieth lapping the Australian Open field; and in coming days we’ll witness 18 of the world’s best players tee it up at the Chevron, er, Target, uh, Northwestern Mutual, sorry, Hero World Challenge.

Tiger Woods’ tournament, of course, will be most noteworthy because of Woods’ return from a lingering back injury, which should leave observers hanging the tinsel with a little less care as they keep one eye fixated on the proceedings at Isleworth.

It’s not April, it’s not July, it’s not even September. Traditional golf peaks on the sporting landscape no longer mean as much as the competitors and the competition itself.

If you build it, they will come? More like, if they come, we’ll build it up. - Jason Sobel

There’s no telling what Jordan Spieth’s impressive Australian Open victory on Sunday will lead to next year and beyond, but the hype is going to keep building for this bright young talent. There was the Australian golf writer who watched Spieth’s final-round 63 and declared it “almost beyond comprehension” on “the most difficult championship course in the country.” There was world No. 1 Rory McIlroy, who finished 15 shots behind Spieth at The Australian Golf Club, with high praise in a tweet: “You could give me another 100 rounds today at The Australian and I wouldn’t sniff 63.” And then there was Adam Scott, who finished nine shots behind Spieth. There was recognition of the high achievement in Scott’s observations, and something else, too. There was a hint of caution from a player who remembers what it was like to be the young upstart labeled the next big thing.

“He needs to surge, to push himself to surge now because you don't know how many chances you'll get getting to that level,” Scott said. “For him to make the most of it, he's got to push himself and expect a lot.” Spieth looks more than game for pushing himself, and that means we all get to see the fun part next. We get to see if he’s ready to  push McIlroy and Scott on some larger stages with even more at stake next year. - Randall Mell

The unknown world of international expansion became a degree more focused on Sunday with the completion of the PGA Tour China’s inaugural season.

With the PGA Tour’s shift to a wrap-around schedule the circuit also transformed the way players ascend to golf’s largest stage, making the Tour the primary avenue to “big league” employment. Along with that came the addition of the PGA Tour China, PGA Tour Latinoamerica and PGA Tour Canada, as the feeder circuits for the Tour.

It’s worth noting that the first class from China is an eclectic mix of would-be Tour types, including two players from China, an Australian, an American and a South Korean.

The PGA Tour has always been a global destination and now hopefuls from far-flung locales have an avenue to get there. - Rex Hoggard

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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.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

President at the Presidents Cup

Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

Cart on the green

Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

Trump golf properties


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers

Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm