Third Round Postponed in New Zealand

By Mercer BaggsJanuary 11, 2002, 5:00 pm
Darkness, brought on by a near three-and-a-half hour rain delay, postponed the third round of the New Zealand Open in Wellington.
 
When all was said and done, Tiger Woods found himself six shots off the lead, with the final group through 12 holes when play was called at 8:25 p.m. local time (2:25 a.m. ET).
 
Woods, who was 10 strokes back after double bogeying the first hole, shot a 4-under 67 to finish at 3-under-par for the tournament.
 
Overnight co-leader Stephen Leaney is tied with Steve Alker at 9-under; the two men are through 12 and 13 holes, respectively. Fellow co-leader James McLean is still at 7-under through 12 holes, even par for the day.
 
Michael Campbell was able to finish his third round, shooting 5-under 66 to move to 8-under. Craig Parry is also at minus 8 through 14 holes.
 
Officials said the third round would resume at 7:00 a.m. Sunday, with plans to play all 72 holes; though, rain is again in the forecast.
 
Once the third round has been completed, the field will then begin the final round after a short break, with players to go out in threesomes from both the first and 10th tees.
 
Continuous rain flooded greens and fairways at the Paraparaumu Beach course Saturday, forcing a suspension of play at 1:20 p.m. Play resumed, when the weather slackened, at 4:45 p.m.
 
Woods started the third round at 1-over, and picked up three shots on the leaders before the horn first sounded, overcoming the double bogey at the first to make the turn in 3-under 32.
 
Incidentally, Woods is a combined 8-over-par on his first holes of each round, including last week's Mercedes Championships.
 
Under heavy rain, Tiger hit his drive in the long, wet rough on the opening hole, and was only able to advance his second shot some three feet.
 
The worlds No. 1 recouped with birdies at the second and fourth holes, and then drove the 310-yard, par-4 sixth. Woods, who averaged nearly 33 putts over his first two rounds, knocked in the seven-foot eagle putt to get back into red numbers for the tournament.
 
For the first time all week, Woods failed to post a birdie on a par-5, when he parred the seventh hole; however, he rolled in an 18-foot birdie putt at the par-4 eighth to climb to minus 2.
 
He then parred Nos. 9, 10 and 11, and was in the fairway at the par-5 12th when play was halted.
 
Though the precipitation continued, players trekked back to their respective positions after the lengthy delay.
 
Tiger reached the green in two at No. 12, and two-putted for birdie. He gave that shot back, however, on the next hole, missing a four-foot par putt.
 
Woods traded a birdie at the 15th with a bogey at the 17th. He concluded his round with a birdie at the par-5 finishing hole.
 
Hopefully, tomorrow Ill get off to a good start, better start than today and post a good number, Woods said.
 
He has plenty of ground of which to make. Though he closed to within four strokes of the lead upon the conclusion of his round, the closing twosomes had few problems on the soggy, receptive greens.
 
Alker was 3-under on the day, while Leaney picked up two strokes to par, once they finally got started. Campbells 5-under total was the low round of the day.
 
Full-field scores from the New Zealand Open

Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

Getty Images

Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.