Van der Walt calls out Weir after Heritage WD

By Will GrayApril 15, 2016, 1:24 am

Playing this week on a sponsor invite, former Masters champ Mike Weir withdrew from the RBC Heritage following a 7-over 78 in the opening round. It was a turn of events that didn't sit well with fellow PGA Tour member Dawie van der Walt.

Van der Walt is a 33-year-old Tour rookie who earned his card last season via the Web.com Tour Finals. The South African has made seven cuts in 13 starts this season, highlighted by a T-17 finish at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.

Van der Walt was second alternate for this week's event, but he ultimately didn't gain entry into the 132-man field. After learning of Weir's withdrawal, van der Walt sent a tweet to his 936 followers that he deleted hours later.

"Gota (sic) love a guy who gets an invite into a Tour event and then WD after the first round," van der Walt wrote, closing his tweet with the hashtag, "#hangitupmike."

Weir, 45, did not disclose any injury upon withdrawing. He is playing this season on a major medical extension, but remains mired in a lengthy slump. Weir has either withdrawn or missed the cut in each of his last 24 worldwide starts, and he hasn't played the weekend since a T-21 finish at the no-cut CIMB Classic in October 2014.

Weir has not broken par in any of his 12 competitive rounds this year, and he hasn't been in red figures since a second-round 70 at last year's AT&T Byron Nelson Classic.

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PGA Tour, LPGA react to video review rules changes

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 1:32 pm

The USGA and R&A announced on Monday updates to the Rules of Golf, including no longer accepting call-ins relating to violations. The PGA Tour and LPGA, which were both part of a working group of entities who voted on the changes, issued the following statements:

PGA Tour:

The PGA Tour has worked closely with the USGA and R&A on this issue in recent years, and today's announcement is another positive step to ensure the Rules of Golf align with how the game is presented and viewed globally. The PGA Tour will adopt the new Local Rule beginning January 1, 2018 and evolve our protocols for reviewing video evidence as outlined.

LPGA:

We are encouraged by the willingness of the governing bodies to fully vet the issues and implement real change at a pace much quicker than the sport has seen previously. These new adaptations, coupled with changes announced earlier this year, are true and meaningful advances for the game. The LPGA plans to adopt fully the protocols and new Local Rule as outlined.

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Sharma closes on Monday, wins Joburg Open

By Associated PressDecember 11, 2017, 12:43 pm

JOHANNESBURG – Shubhankar Sharma won his first European Tour title by a shooting 3-under 69 Monday in the final round of the weather-delayed Joburg Open.

The 21-year-old Indian resumed his round on the eighth green after play was halted early Sunday afternoon because of storms. He parred that hole, birdied No. 9 and made par on every hole on the back nine.


Full-field scores from the Joburg Open


Sharma finished at 23-under 264, three strokes ahead of the pack, and qualified for next year's British Open, too.

''I actually wasn't going to come here about a week ago ... so I'm really happy that I came,'' said Sharma, who shot 61 in the second round. ''I don't think I'm ever going forget my first time in South Africa.''

Erik van Rooyen (66) was second, three strokes ahead of Shaun Norris (65) and Tapio Pulkkanen (68).

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 pm

Sharma among three Open qualifiers at Joburg Open

By Will GrayDecember 11, 2017, 12:16 pm

Shubhankar Sharma earned his first career European Tour win at the rain-delayed Joburg Open and punched his ticket to The Open in the process.

Sharma returned to Randpark Golf Club Monday morning after storms washed out much of the scheduled final day of play. Beginning the re-start with a four-shot lead, he hung on to win by three over South Africa's Erik Van Rooyen.

Both men can make travel plans for Carnoustie next summer, as this was the second event in the Open Qualifying Series with three spots available for players not otherwise exempt who finished inside the top 10. The final spot went to Shaun Norris, who tied for third with Finland's Tapio Pulkkanen but had a higher world ranking (No. 192) than Pulkkanen (No. 197) entering the week.

The Joburg Open was the final official European Tour event of the year. The next tournament in the Open Qualifying Series will be the SMBC Singapore Open in January, where four spots at Carnoustie will be up for grabs.