Cink Johnson Represent US at World Cup

By Golf Channel NewsroomNovember 15, 2005, 5:00 pm
2005 Algarve World Cup in PortugalAs the PGA Tour season came to a close two weeks ago and with the start of the 2006 European Tour season, the golfing world pauses to come together for the WGC - Algarve World Cup in Portugal.
Twenty-four teams will battle it out for a share of the $4,000,000 purse in the four round tournament which features two rounds of foursomes play and two rounds of fourballs.
Golf bags of Stewart Cink and Zach Johnson
The duo of Stewart Cink and Zach Johnson will try and be the first U.S. team to win the World Cup since the year 2000.
The United States, despite not drawing a Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson to the event, is still well represented with Stewart Cink - currently ranked 25th in the world - and Zach Johnson, ranked 49th.
The World Cup field consists of the top-ranked player from select countries, who then gets to choose his partner. If that player declines the offer, the invitation goes to the next player from that country in the rankings.
Cink, who earlier in the year went a mind-boggling 351 straight holes without a three-putt, and Johnson follow in the footsteps of the U.S. team of Scott Verplank and Bob Tway, who finished a disappointing seventh in 2004. It marked the first time in the event's 50-year history that the U.S. has gone four years without winning the title.
The last U.S. victory came in 2000 when Woods teamed up with David Duval for the win. Woods had also won the title the previous year when he was paired with good friend Mark O'Meara.
The team to beat this year could very well be England, who also happen to be the defending champions. England will be represented by Luke Donald - who teamed with Paul Casey last year for the title - and David Howell, who's brimming with confidence after he dispatched of Woods in last week's HSBC Champions event in China. The win vaulted the little-known Howell up to the 13th spot in the world rankings, the position Donald previously held before slipping two spots to 15th.
The only other team that comes close to matching England's lofty place in the world rankings is Spain, who comes in with the highest ranked player in the field in Sergio Garcia. Garcia will be paired with countryman Miguel Angel Jimenez who is currently 34th in the world. Garcia and Jimenez finished second last year to Donald and Casey.
Other top teams of note are Ireland's tandem of Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley. The Irish duo are the only team to have played in all five of the World Cup events since it became a part of the World Golf Championships in 2000.
Host nation Portugal will be making their debut in the World Cup, with Jose-Filipe Lima and Antonio Sobrinho representing their home country.
This is the 52nd edition of the World Cup which was started back in 1953 when it was originally called the Canada Cup and International Golf Championship. It became known as the World Cup of Golf in 1967 and in 2000 it became one of the four events that make up the World Golf Championships.
Related links:
  • Full Coverage - Algarve World Cup
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    Hadwin returns to site of last year's 59

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 11:04 pm

    Adam Hadwin had a career season last year, one that included shooting a 59 and winning a PGA Tour event. But those two achievements didn't occur in the same week.

    While Hadwin's breakthrough victory came at the Valspar Championship in March, it was at the CareerBuilder Challenge in January when he first made headlines with a third-round 59 at La Quinta Country Club. Hadwin took a lead into the final round as a result, but he ultimately couldn't keep pace with Hudson Swafford.

    He went on to earn a spot at the Tour Championship, and Hadwin made his first career Presidents Cup appearance in October. Now the Canadian returns to Palm Springs, eager to improve on last year's result and hoping to earn a spot in the final group for a third straight year after a T-6 finish in 2016.

    "A lot of good memories here in the desert," Hadwin told reporters. "I feel very comfortable here, very at home. Lots of Canadians, so it's always fun to play well in front of those crowds and hopefully looking forward to another good week."

    Hadwin's 59 last year was somewhat overshadowed, both by the fact that he didn't win the event and that it came just one week after Justin Thomas shot a 59 en route to victory at the Sony Open. But he's still among an exclusive club of just eight players to have broken 60 in competition on Tour and he's eager to get another crack at La Quinta on Saturday.

    "If I'm in the same position on 18, I'm gunning for 58 this year," Hadwin said, "not playing safe for 59."

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    Rahm: If I thought like Phil, I could not hit a shot

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 10:39 pm

    When it comes to Jon Rahm and Phil Mickelson, there are plenty of common bonds. Both starred at Arizona State, both are now repped by the same agency and Rahm's former college coach and agent, Tim Mickelson, now serves full-time as his brother's caddie.

    Those commonalities mean the two men have played plenty of practice rounds together, but the roads quickly diverge when it comes to on-course behavior. Rahm is quick, fiery and decisive; Mickelson is one of the most analytical players on Tour. And as Rahm told reporters Wednesday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, those differences won't end anytime soon.

    "I don't need much. 'OK, it's like 120 (yards), this shot, right," Rahm said. "And then you have Phil, it's like, 'Oh, this shot, the moisture, this going on, this is like one mile an hour wind sideways, it's going to affect it one yard. This green is soft, this trajectory. They're thinking, and I'm like, 'I'm lost.' I'm like, 'God if I do that thought process, I could not hit a golf shot.'"

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    The tactics may be more simplified, but Rahm can't argue with the results. While Mickelson is in the midst of a winless drought that is approaching five years, Rahm won three times around the world last year and will defend a PGA Tour title for the first time next week at Torrey Pines.

    Both men are in the field this week in Palm Springs, where Mickelson will make his 2018 debut with what Rahm fully expects to be another dose of high-level analytics for the five-time major winner with his brother on the bag.

    "It's funny, he gets to the green and then it's the same thing. He's very detail-oriented," Rahm said of Mickelson. "I'm there listening and I'm like, 'Man, I hope we're never paired together for anything because I can't think like this. I would not be able to play golf like that. But for me to listen to all that is really fun."

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    DJ changes tune on golf ball distance debate

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 9:16 pm

    World No. 1 Dustin Johnson is already one of the longest hitters in golf, so he's not looking for any changes to be made to golf ball technology - despite comments from him that hinted at just such a notion two months ago.

    Johnson is in the Middle East this week for the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, and he told BBC Sport Wednesday that he wouldn't be in favor of making changes to the golf ball in order to remedy some of the eye-popping distances players are hitting the ball with ever-increasing frequency.

    "It's not like we are dominating golf courses," Johnson said. "When was the last time you saw someone make the game too easy? I don't really understand what all the debate is about because it doesn't matter how far it goes; it is about getting it in the hole."

    Johnson's rhetorical question might be answered simply by looking back at his performance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions earlier this month, an eight-shot romp that featured a tee shot on the 433-yard 12th hole that bounded down a slope to within inches of the hole.

    Johnson appeared much more willing to consider a reduced-distance ball option at the Hero World Challenge in November, when he sat next to tournament host Tiger Woods and supported Woods' notion that the ball should be addressed.

    "I don't mind seeing every other professional sport, they play with one ball. All the pros play with the same ball," Johnson said. "In baseball, the guys that are bigger and stronger, they can hit a baseball a lot further than the smaller guys. ... I think there should be some kind of an advantage for guys who work on hitting it far and getting that speed that's needed, so having a ball, like the same ball that everyone plays, there's going to be, you're going to have more of an advantage."

    Speaking Wednesday in Abu Dhabi, Johnson stood by the notion that regardless of whether the rules change or stay the same, he plans to have a leg up on the competition.

    "If the ball is limited then it is going to limit everyone," he said. "I'm still going to hit it that much further than I guess the average Tour player."

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    LPGA lists April date for new LA event

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 17, 2018, 8:18 pm

    The LPGA’s return to Los Angeles will come with the new Hugel-JTBC Open being played at Wilshire Country Club April 19-22, the tour announced Wednesday.

    When the LPGA originally released its schedule, it listed the Los Angeles event with the site to be announced at a later date.

    The Hugel-JTBC Open will feature a 144-player field and a $1.5 million purse. It expands the tour’s West Coast swing, which will now be made up of four events in California in March and April.

    The LPGA last played in Los Angeles in 2005. Wilshire Country Club hosted The Office Depot in 2001, with Annika Sorenstam winning there.