Singh in Charge Entering AmEx

By Golf Channel NewsroomSeptember 27, 2004, 4:00 pm
Tiger Woods has won nine World Golf Championship events. Hes won this weeks WGC-American Express Championship three times ' on three different courses, including this years return stop in Kilkenny, Ireland. Hes the two-time defending champion of the tournament, in fact.
By most accounts, Woods should be the clear favorite to again win the AmEx.
But there are two variables that factor into the possibility of a losing equation for Tiger Woods. One, is Vijay Singh. Two, is Tiger himself.
Woods won this tournament for the third time in five contests when he defeated Singh, Tim Herron and Stuart Appleby by two strokes at the Capital City Club.
It marked Tigers fifth win of the 2003 season, and proved to be the necessary boost Woods needed to surpass Singh ' in their peers minds ' for Player of the Year honors.
This year, there is no debating as to who is the best player on tour ' let alone the better player ' right now ' between the two.
Singh is having what many are referring to as a 'Tiger-like' season; though, he's already eclipsed Woods' best season in one regard.
He has won eight times this season, including a remarkable five of his last six tournaments. Tiger won nine times in 2000.
Tiger collected $9,188,321 in 2000; Singh has already pocketed $9,455,566 -- and plans to play at least three more tournaments this season.
Tiger, however, is not having a Tiger-like season. Hes won but once this year, at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship, and is still seeking his first stroke-play victory in 2004.
And we wont even get into that whole Ryder Cup debacle.
One week its poor driving, another its erratic iron play, another its sporadic putting. Or maybe he just gets flat out beaten by another. There seems to always be something keeping Woods out of the winners circle.
But somehow, someway, he continues to come close.
Woods has 12 top-10s in 17 starts this season. Three of his last four finishes have been top-3s. Fourteen of his last 16 rounds have been in the 60s.
Its certainly not Tigers most glorious season, but its certainly one that will define his grit.
For Singh, this season is both glorious and defining.
He finally toppled Woods atop the Official World Golf Ranking. He has already broken Tigers single-season money record. He's established a career-best for tournaments won in one year. And ' most importantly ' he is again a major champion.
It might come as a bit of a surprise, but Singh has never won a WGC event. But if he is to win one, it will most likely be the AmEx, where he has three consecutive top-3 finishes.
This is the fifth playing of the AmEx. The first two editions were contested at Valderrama in Spain. It was supposed to be held at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, Mo., in 2001, but was canceled in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks. The following year it was held on the Emerald Isle, and last year was moved to Woodstock, Ga.
Now its back at Mount Juliet Estate, a Jack Nicklaus design. Its the only WGC event to be played on European soil.
The field includes the top 50 players from the world rankings, as well as leading money winners from various tours (top 30 from the PGA Tour money list and top 20 from the European Volvo Order of Merit). There is not cut.
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    Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

    By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

    One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

    Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

    "I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

    Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

    "I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

    Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

    "Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

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    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

    The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.

    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.

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    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

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