McConaughey a fan of Fowler, Team USA in Rio

By Jay CoffinAugust 12, 2016, 7:50 pm

RIO DE JANEIRO – The man famous for, among other things, delivering the “alright, alright, alright” line at the Oscars two years ago was following Rickie Fowler Friday at the Olympics saying “nestle, nestle, nestle” when the American star hit a chip shot on the 16th hole.

Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey has been living it up this week while attending the Olympics for the first time. He’s watched men's and women’s rugby, beach volleyball, table tennis and swimming. Friday, it was golf, before flying back to the U.S. later in the evening.

“It’s been a blast,” he said in his signature Texas twang. “We’ve covered some ground, man.

“One, I’m obviously over here rooting on the red, white and blue. Two, I’m over here, my wife’s Brazilian, so I came over here to root for this country to pull it off, which I think they’re doing a pretty good job of that.”

McConaughey, 46, wanted to catch up with Fowler before his trip ended and, four days ago, reached out to Fowler to see if it’d be OK to come watch him play.

The two had never met, although they have been in communication in the past according to Fowler. McConaughey says he’s always admired Fowler’s style and the way he handles himself and wanted to show him, and the other Americans, some support.

“Just shows you how big the Olympics is,” Fowler said. “There’s a lot of people that come in to watch.”

McConaughey, wearing a newsboy hat and Presidents Cup pullover with an American flag emblazoned on the back, is said to be a single-digit handicap even though he contends he only plays golf once a year during his annual charity event. Or, as he describes it, he’s “good enough to want to keep picking them up, but not so good that I’m pissed when I don’t.”

Brazilian ties aside – McConaughey married model Camila Alves in 2006 and they have children ages 8, 6 and 3 – he’s a sports junkie, so the Olympics has always been smack in the middle of his radar even though he’d never been able to attend one before this year.


For more photos of McConaughey's excellent Olympic adventure, click the photo above

Olympic golf coverage: Articles, photos and videos


“It is pure sport,” he said. “Some people I heard the other night said they come here and they are reminded why they wanted to be competitive at whatever sport it was when they were a kid.

“The common denominator is the sport. You come here and everybody has different styles of play, different chants and cheers on the sidelines, different ways how they go about playing the game, different religions, different politics … and the equalizer is the game.”

McConaughey was here as a respite before returning to the U.S. to work on five projects before the end of the year, including two animated features and two Christmas movies.

“I got tired of people saying ‘what’s your kids’ favorite film you’ve done’ and I said, ‘I haven’t made anything they can see yet,’” he said. “I’m not going to sit my kids down and let them watch ‘True Detective’ yet. There would be a lot of explaining to do.”

“True Detective” is the HBO crime-drama television series in which McConaughey and Woody Harrelson starred together for Season 1. Difficult to tell these days which role McConaughey is most known for; the aforementioned Oscar speech, “True Detective,” “Dallas Buyers Club” or even the laid-back car commercials where he nonchalantly cruises around town and waxes poetic. 

Fowler confirmed, McConaughey didn’t try to sell him a Lincoln.

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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.