Quotes of the Week

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 3, 2013, 5:21 pm

'I'm not in a great place mentally. I can't really say much, guys. I'm just in a bad place mentally.'Rory McIlroy, immediately after withdrawing in the middle of his second round at the Honda Classic. After an opening-round even-par 70, McIlroy was 7 over through eight holes on Friday morning. On his ninth hole of the day, the world No. 1 hit an approach shot into the water and then promptly walked off the course.


'I sincerely apologize to the Honda Classic and PGA Tour for my sudden withdrawal. I have been suffering with a sore wisdom tooth, which is due to come out in the near future.' – McIlroy, in a statement released about an hour after he withdrew from the Honda Classic, citing a 'sore wisdom tooth,' as the reason.


'I’ve been through it a long time. But, also, this is a slightly different era, as well. You’ve got to think about it more before you say something or do something.' Tiger Woods, on the instantaneous spread of news through Twitter and blogs. McIlroy’s bizarre mid-round WD from the Honda Classic and subsequent backlash spread like wildfire on the internet.


'People don't understand. Most of the people that are commentating or analyzing don't understand the game of golf, so I didn't have a problem with it.' – Woods, again, on the challenge of working through swing problems with the feeling of the whole world is watching – something McIlroy will have to adjust to.


'I'm a great fan of Rory's, but I don't think (walking off the course) was the right thing to do.' Ernie Els, McIlroy’s playing partner, after his second round at PGA National. When informed that the reason was a sore wisdom tooth, he added 'He obviously couldn't do it after nine holes anymore. Toothache, it's not fun I guess.'


'Even Rory looked at me yesterday and he was like, ‘What are you doing here?’ I’m a golf fan, so why not go out and watch the best golfer in the world play?' – Shane Lowry, who was in the gallery this week at the Honda Classic watching his close friend McIlroy, one week after beating the world’s top-ranked player in the WGC-Match Play. Lowry failed to Monday qualify for the Honda, so instead paid a $690 entry fee and played a Golfslinger.com mini-tour event on Thursday.


'I was 1 over at the time, and if that ball is not playable from where it's at, where I caught was pretty far back and I would have had to have dropped. I couldn't even get an angle in the first cut and had to drop in the primary and had to lay up and didn't get that up-and-down – looking at a six, 3 over, [but] all of a sudden I flip it, make par there and birdie the next.' – Woods, again, explaining his decision to play out of the water during the first round of the Honda Classic. Woods’ spectacular par turned out to be a blip on an otherwise mediocre showing at PGA National.


'Somebody could have stepped right by there and been bit. He blended in perfectly with the grass; wasn't but about 18 inches long, but he was big enough that he could have bit you and hurt you pretty bad.'Boo Weekley, who calmly scooped up a snake with the end of his driver and deposited it into a canal during the first round of the Honda Classic. Marshals were growing frantic figuring out a way to deal with the poisonous water moccasin.


'The guys were itching to put up times, but it’s a good thing they weren’t doing that. As competitive as we all are . . . The name of the game was to keep from putting a Ferrari into a wall and injuring ourselves.'Justin Rose, after taking part in a Ferrari racing experience with Rickie Fowler and Ian Poulter on Tuesday at the Palm Beach International Raceway.


'She’s not feeling well. She has withdrawn; she does have flu-like symptoms, but, to be clear, she has not been hospitalized and there is no diagnosis of malaria.' – David Livingston, Natalie Gulbis’ agent, responding to reports that she had been diagnosed with malaria after she withdrew from the HSBC Women’s Champions event in Singapore.

Trump playing 'quickly' with Tiger, DJ

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 24, 2017, 1:33 pm

Tiger Woods is scheduled to make his return to competition next week at his Hero World Challenge. But first, a (quick) round with the President.

President Donald Trump tweeted on Friday that he was going to play at Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Fla., alongside Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Woods and President Trump previously played last December. Trump, who, according to trumpgolfcount.com has played 75 rounds since taking over the presidency, has also played over the last year with Rory McIlroy, Ernie Els and Hideki Matsuyama.

Chawrasia leads major champs in Hong Kong

By Associated PressNovember 24, 2017, 1:19 pm

HONG KONG – S.S.P. Chawrasia extended his lead at the Hong Kong Open to two strokes Friday after a 4-under 66 in the second round.

Chawrasia, who had led by one at the Hong Kong Golf Club, is at 9-under 131 overall and took as much as a five-stroke lead at one point.

''Yesterday I was putting very well, and today, also I make some up and downs. I saved a couple of short putts. That's why I think I'm leading by two shots most probably,'' the Indian said. ''The next two days, I'm just looking forward.''


Full-field scores from the UBS Hong Kong Open


Thomas Aiken (64) is second, followed by Alexander Bjork (66), Joakim Lagergren (66), Poom Saksansin (68) and Julian Suri (67) at 5 under 135.

Aiken's round was the lowest of the tournament.

''It is tough out there. The greens are really firm. You've got to hit the fairway,'' Aiken said. ''If you get above the holes, putts can get away from you.''

Justin Rose (69) had six birdies, but three bogeys and a double-bogey at the par 3 12th kept him at 3 under for the tournament.

Masters champion Sergio Garcia (71), playing for the first time in Hong Kong, was at even par, as was defending champion Sam Brazel (71) and 2014 champion Scott Hend (67).

''I have to play better,'' Garcia said. ''The way I felt like I played, it's difficult. This kind of course, you need to play well to shoot a good score.''

Day (68) just one back at Australian Open

By Nick MentaNovember 24, 2017, 6:40 am

Jason Day posted a second-round 68 to move himself just one off the lead held by Lucas Herbert through two rounds at the Emirates Australian Open. Here’s where things stand after 36 holes in Sydney.

Leaderboard: Herbert (-9), Day (-8), Cameron Davis (-7), Anthony Quayle (-6), Matt Jones (-4), Cameron Smith (-4), Nick Cullen (-4), Richard Green (-4)

What it means: Day is in search of his first worldwide victory of 2017. The former world No. 1 last visited the winner’s circle in May 2016, when he won The Players at TPC Sawgrass. A win this week would close out a difficult year for the Aussie who struggled with his game while also helping his mother in her battle with cancer. Day’s last victory on his native soil came in 2013, when he partnered with Adam Scott to win the World Cup of Golf for Australia at Royal Melbourne.


Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


Round of the day: Herbert followed an opening 67 with a round of 66 to vault himself into the lead at The Australian Golf Club. He made six birdies, including four on his second nine, against a lone bogey to take the outright lead. The 22-year-old, who held the lead at this event last year and captured low-amateur honors in 2014, is coming off a runner-up finish at the NSW Open Championship, which boosted him from 714th to 429th in the Official World Golf Ranking. His 5-under score was matched by Dale Brandt-Richards and Josh Cabban.

Best of the rest: Matt Jones, who won this event over Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott two years ago, turned in 4-under 67. Jones is best known to American audiences for his playoff victory at the 2014 Shell Houston Open and for holding the 36-hole lead at the 2015 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits, which was eventually won by Day. Jones will start the weekend five shots off the lead, at 4 under par.

Biggest disappointment: Spieth has a lot of work to do this weekend if he expects to be in the title picture for the fourth year in a row. Rounds of 70-71 have him eight shots behind the lead held by Herbert. Spieth made a birdie and a bogey on each side Friday to turn in level par. The reigning champion golfer of the year has finished first, second and first at this event over the last three years.

Storyline to watch this weekend: The Australian Open is the first event of the 2018 Open Qualifying Series. The leading three players who finish in the top 10 and who are not otherwise exempt will receive invites into next summer’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

"It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

“Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

“That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.