Annika Sorenstam - December 1, 2011

By Morning Drive TeamDecember 1, 2011, 1:09 pm

Following his play in Australia, she thinks that Tiger Woods will play well at Chevron this week and feels that he is showing a lot of progress and he is swinging as well as she has seen in a long time. She is surprised that the Chevron World Challenge is only 18 players and that the field is not stronger which she thinks will help Tiger. Over the past few months, Tiger has been wearing a different kind of shoe which he feels helps his swing and the way he plays. Annika was not really sold on what Tiger said about his new shoes but agreed that athletes train in bare feet to improve strength. She finds it interesting but is not sold on the significance of the shoes in his swing.

When it comes to who is currently the best player in the world, she is not yet sold on Rory McIlroy but thinks that he will definitely have a good chance to challenge Luke Donald for the World #1 spot. He is very young and has been growing with his game and she is confident in his potential. Luke Donald is definitely the #1 player as seen by his consistency as well as the quality of his wins. She does think the World #1 needs to be a Major Champion and Rory fills that bill.

Robert Allenby and Geoff Ogilvy have been involved in a bit of a verbal (and almost physical) feud in Australia since the Presidents Cup and Annika thinks that the whole dispute is actually pretty funny. She is amused by what Allenby is complaining about as it relates to team play. If a player had said something like that about her in the Solheim Cup, she would have addressed the person privately but not publicly on the issue. The kinds of things that Allenby said does not do anything to create friends among the Presidents Cup team and as a result, he is not in the best position when it comes to the idea of being a member of future Presidents Cup teams.

In looking ahead to 2012 for Tiger Woods, Annika thinks that it will be a better year for him than 2011 because he is healthy again, he has had more time to practice and work on his swing, and his personal life is finally coming under a bit more control. All of those things will contribute to him having a much better year. He has a long way to go to get back to the top but just winning again will be a good thing for him. The intimidation factor that Tiger brought to tournaments is not the same and the younger players have said as much publicly. Also, the younger players do not really know what that factor felt like. He may need a few great years just to get close to that intimidation factor again. Tiger is saying that his swing is much stronger in the wind now and he will have a chance to test the swing in the first round at Sherwood CC. Confidence is everything in golf, especially with the golf swing. He is swinging better and if he can go out and play well in tough conditions, that will build confidence in every area of his game.

Annika went through LPGA Tour Q-School and she said that it is very difficult when you have a dream and that dream is on the line in a place like Q-School where if you make it, you have a job the next year as well as new sponsors and opportunities and if you don’t make it, you don’t have any of those things. The pressure is different at Q-School than it is at Majors because at Majors your career and livelihood is not on the line. 17-year-old Ginger Howard is trying to earn her LPGA Tour card this week and she is taking on a big challenge. She would be a great addition to the LPGA Tour if she were able to qualify this week in Daytona Beach.

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Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

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.

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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 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.