Norman Rejoins PGA Tour

By Golf Channel NewsroomNovember 11, 2002, 5:00 pm
PGA Tour (75x100)Greg Norman, who lost his PGA Tour membership when he failed to play in the required 12 events in 2001, will rejoin the tour for the 2003 season, the tour announced Monday.
While Norman's schedule for 2003 has not yet been finalized, he will not be required to play in a minimum number of tournaments in 2003, since he will not be utilizing the PGA TOUR's 'home circuit exception' to play events in his native Australia. Rather, Norman will play his international schedule, including play in Australia, through the use of normal conflicting event releases.
Norman was planning on playing in the necessary 12 events in 2001, but withdrew from the Genuity Championship at Doral because of an illness and the British Open because of the death of a close friend. He thus played in only 11 events.
'I've always tried to play into the number of events I felt was necessary for maintaining my competitivesness,' Norman told the Palm Beach Post. 'This really fits into my business plan. That's the best way of explaining it.'
His exempt status this year will come as a result of his record-breaking victory at the 1994 Players Championship that carried with it a 10-year exemption. When that exemption expires, his play will fall under a 10-year exemption that came with his 1997 NEC World Series of Golf title. After the 2007 season, he will play under the Life Member exemption he earned as a winner of 20 PGA Tour titles.
Under this year's rules, Norman was allowed to receive five sponsor exemptions and then fill out his schedule by playing in whatever majors and World Golf Championships events he was eligible for. He was eventually granted another exemption after he qualified for the U.S. Open. He played 13 events this year, earning $467,988 on the strength of four top-25 finishes.
'Greg remains one of the most popular and exciting players in professional golf,' said PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem. 'I'm pleased that Greg will again be a PGA Tour member in 2003 while having the flexibility to continue as a worldwide ambassador of the game.'
Norman was one of only 13 players to make the cut in all four major championships this past year.
Since turning professional in 1976, Norman has amassed 86 international victories, including two British Open championships (1986 at Turnberry and 1993 at Royal St. George's). He has competed in 327 PGA Tour events and has made the cut 278 times with nearly half (135) of his cuts made resulting in Top-10 finishes.

Norman was planning on playing in the necessary 12 events in 2001, but withdrew from the Genuity Championship at Doral because of an illness and the British Open because of the death of a close friend. The Tour could have given him a special exemption to keep his membership, but PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem chose not to.
Norman's biography was moved to the back of the Tour's media guide in the 'prominent international players' section and his name no longer appeared on the season money or career money lists.
Norman will make an appearance on The Golf Channel at 8 tonight to discuss his future and other topics.




Watch: Shilton wins $16k timepiece with hole-in-one

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 2:50 am

Australian Brad Shilton made a hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole during the first round of the Australian Open, and he was rewarded handsomely for his efforts - with a Tag Heuer watch worth $16k.

Day gets in early mix with 66 in return to Australia

By Associated PressNovember 23, 2017, 2:32 am

SYDNEY - Jason Day's first tournament round in Australia in four years was a 5-under 66 to put him among the leaders early Thursday at the Australian Open.

Day's round came unhinged late with a double-bogey 6 on the par-4 eighth hole, his second-last of the day. He hit his tee shot into the trees on the left, hit back out to the fairway, missed his approach to the green and then couldn't get up and down.

''That was brutal,'' Day said of the 481-yard hole that played into gusting winds.

But Day recovered quickly to birdie his last to sit three strokes behind fellow Australian and early leader Cameron Davis, who started on the first, had six front-nine birdies and shot 63 at The Australian Golf Club.

In between the two was Australian Taylor MacDonald, who shot 65.

''It was a pretty solid round, I didn't miss many fairways, I didn't miss many greens,'' Day said. ''I'd give myself a seven or eight out of 10.''

Defending champion Jordan Spieth, attempting to win the Australian Open for the third time in four years, was off to a poor start among the afternoon players, bogeying his first two holes.

The Sydney-born Davis played most of this season on the Mackenzie Tour in Canada and will attempt to secure his card in the final round of qualifying from Dec. 7-10 in Chandler, Arizona.

''Everything went to plan,'' Davis said. ''I got off to a great start. I was hitting my spots and was able to keep it together on the back nine.''

NOTES: Australian Brad Shilton had the first ace of the tournament, using a 5-iron for a hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole, his second hole of the day. Australian veteran Geoff Ogilvy, the 2006 U.S. Open winner, shot 69. He and Rod Pampling (68) played the first round with Day.

Day: Woods feeling good, hitting it long

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 22, 2017, 9:33 pm

Jason Day says Tiger Woods told him he feels better than he has in three years, which is good news for Woods a week ahead of his return to the PGA Tour at the Hero World Challenge.

Day, a fellow Nike endorser, was asked about Woods during his news conference at the Emirates Australian Open on Wednesday. "I did talk to him," Day said, per a report in the Sydney Morning Herald,"and he did say it's the best he's ever felt in three years'" Day said.

"He doesn't wake up with pain anymore, which is great. I said to him, 'Look, it's great to be one of the best players ever to live, but health is one thing that we all take for granted and if you can't live a happy, healthy life, then that's difficult.'"

The Hero World Challenge will be played Nov. 30-Dec. 3 in the Bahamas and broadcast on Golf Channel and NBC.

Day, who has had his own health issues, said he could empathize with Woods.

"I totally understand where he's coming from, because sometimes I wake up in the morning and it takes me 10 minutes to get out of bed, and for him to be in pain for three years is very frustrating."

Woods has not played since February after undergoing surgery following a recurrence of back problems.

"From what I see on Instagram and what he's been telling me, he says he's ready and I'm hoping that he is, because from what I hear, he's hitting it very long," Day said.

"And if he's hitting it long and straight, then that's going to be tough for us because it is Tiger Woods. He's always been a clutch putter and in amongst the best and it will be interesting to see.

"There's no pressure. I think it's a 17- or 18-man field, there's no cut, he's playing at a tournament where last year I think he had the most birdies at."

Move over Lydia, a new Ko is coming to LPGA

By Randall MellNovember 22, 2017, 5:11 pm

Another gifted young South Korean will be joining the LPGA ranks next year.

Jin Young Ko, the Korean LPGA Tour star, informed the American-based LPGA on Sunday night that she will be taking up membership next year. Ko earned the right by winning the LPGA’s KEB Hana Bank Championship as a nonmember in South Korea in October.

Ko, 22, no relation to Lydia Ko, first burst on to the international spotlight with her run into contention at the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Turnberry two years ago. She led there through 54 holes, with Inbee Park overtaking her in the final round to win.

With 10 KLPGA Tour titles, three in each of the last two seasons, Ko has risen to No. 19 in the Rolex Women’s World Rankings.

Ko told Sunday afternoon that she was struggling over the decision, with a Monday deadline looming.

“It’s a difficult decision to leave home,” Ko said after the final round of the CME Group Tour Championship in Naples, when she was still undecided. “The travelling far away, on my own, the loneliness, that’s what is difficult.”

Ko will be the favorite to win the LPGA’s Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year Award next year. South Koreans have won that award the last three years. Sung Hyun Park won it this year, In Gee Chun last year and Sei Young Kim in 2015. South Korean-born players have won the last four, with New Zealand’s Lydia Ko winning it in 2014. Ko was born in South Korea and moved to New Zealand when she was 6.

Ko released this statement through the LPGA on Wednesday: 

"It has been my dream since I was young to play on the LPGA Tour and I look forward to testing myself against the best players on a worldwide stage. I know it is going to be tough but making a first win as an LPGA member and winning the Rolex Rookie of the Year award would be two of the biggest goals I would like to achieve next year."