Back on the Tour Finally

By Pat PerezMay 30, 2006, 4:00 pm
Editor's Note: This is a weekly chronicle of the life & times of PGA TOUR star Pat Perez. Visit him at www.PatPerezGolf.com for Pat's daily blog, music-fueled photo galleries, online store & more.
 
Hey everyone! Double P here. Checking in from the road this week instead of Scottsdale. It's so nice to finally be able to say that. Really enjoyed the two months home and a week in San Diego last month, but sometimes I'm most at home on the road - playing golf and competing every week.
 
Im hanging out in Columbus, Ohio, Tuesday night. I played my first practice round since the Tuesday before the Verizon back in March. Teamed up with two good buds today - John Daly and Jason Gore. Daly graced us with his presence for nine holes while Gore and I played all 18. You definitely could've called us Team Infirmary today. Between my left elbow, Gore's right elbow and Daly's bad back and sciatic nerve - we were a walking mess.
 
Surprisingly enough, I played great. I was shocked. In all honesty, I had no expectations going into this week. I'm like a kid in a candy store - just thrilled to be back out here. After two months home, I really wasn't expecting much this week. The Memorial is a big-time tournament and a very difficult invitational to get into.
 
This is one of those weeks where I'm just happy to be playing and hope to play through the weekend. Anything on top of that is gravy. So to get back out there and play so well in the practice round - it really helped get my confidence up going into my Thursday round. I have my coach Michael Owen working out here with me this week and we're picking up where we left off the week of the Verizon; working on my action and getting my hand flatter at the top.
 
I'm not playing a pro-am this week, so Gore and I are making the Wednesday trek over to Dublin to get a round in at Brookside - which is a U.S. Open qualifier course. Both of us will attempt to Monday qualify there in just under two weeks, so this is a great opportunity to check out the course and gear up for 18 there.
 
Laying low this week when I'm not on the course as I'm trying to get back in playing shape. Practice, grab lunch, work out and then get with my guy Jeff Banaszak of Back 9 Fitness. Jeff works on a dozen or so Tour players and he works on me first thing in the morning and again late in the evening. Definitely a Tour necessity as I'm going to push myself pretty hard over these next few weeks. Jeff finds those 'problem' areas and goes to town on them. Most of the time I hurt more after I get off the table than I did before I got on, but I know it's all for the best.
 
That's about it on this end. One day away from teeing it up and playing a competitive round of golf again. The elbow is feeling solid and I get to make my return at The Memorial - which is pretty much as good as it gets outside a Major.
 
On a sad note, I wanted to send out my best wishes to the family and friends of Paul Gleason, who passed away this past weekend due to a rare form of lung cancer. I got to know Paul through a lot of charity tourneys he played in. I'm sure most of you remember him as Principal Vernon in The Breakfast Club, Clarence Beeks in Trading Places, the jerk detective in Die Hard or even Coach Hissler in Johnny Be Good.
 
I've referred to him as the Beeker since day one - and take pride in the fact that Trading Places inspired nickname caught on with other Tour players and pro-am celebs. Daly knew Beeker really well - as did a lot of the Golf Channel guys, I'm sure since he was featured on a few episodes of The Daly Planet. Both Daly and I talked about the Beeker today, shared some laughs and we were both saddened by his passing. He was a great guy, fun to be around and he'll be missed.
 
Tune in Thursday to see me back in action at The Memorial. - Double P
 
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Pat Perez is in the midst of his fifth season on the PGA Tour. 'Double P' earned his PGA Tour card as the Q-School Medalist in 2001 and was part of the 1996 NCAA National Championship golf team at Arizona State University. Visit Pat at his website www.patperezgolf.com or his page at MySpace.com

Day, Spieth chasing Davis after Day 1 of Aussie Open

By Jason CrookNovember 23, 2017, 6:50 am

The PGA Tour is off this week but a couple of the circuit’s biggest stars – Jordan Spieth and Jason Day – are headlining the Emirates Australian Open, the first event in The Open Qualifying Series for the 2018 Open at Carnoustie. Here's how things look after the opening round, where Cameron Davis has opened up a two-shot lead:

Leaderboard: Cameron Davis (-8), Taylor MacDonald (-6), Nick Cullen (-5), Jason Day (-5), Brian Campbell (-4), Lucas Herbert (-4), Stephen Leaney (-4), Anthony Quayle (-4)

What it means: Jordan Spieth has won this event three of the last four years, including last year, but he got off to a rocky start on Thursday. Playing in the windy afternoon wave, the world No. 2 bogeyed his first two holes but rebounded with birdies on Nos. 4 and 5. It was more of the same the rest of the way as the 24-year-old carded three more bogeys and four birdies, getting into the clubhouse with a 1-under 70. While it certainly wasn't the start he was hoping for, Spieth didn't shoot himself out of the tournament with 54 holes left to play, he has plenty of time to claw his way up the leaderboard.

Round of the day: With Round 1 in the books, the solo leader, Davis, is the easy pick here. The 22-year-old Aussie who turned pro last year, came out of the gates on fire, birdieing six of his first seven holes, including four in a row on Nos. 4 through 7. He did drop a shot on the ninth hole to go out in 30 but rebounded with three more birdies on the back to card a 8-under 63. Davis, who was born in Sydney and played this year on the Mackenzie Tour in Canada. He will attempt to get his Web.com Tour card next month during qualifying in Arizona.

Best of the rest: Making his first start in his home country in four years, Day started on the 10th hole at The Australian Golf Club and made four birdies to one bogey on the back side before adding four more circles after making the turn. Unfortunately for the 30-year-old, he also added an ugly double-bogey 6 on the par-4 eighth hole and had to settle for a 5-under 66, good enough to sit T-3. Day, who has dropped to No. 12 in the world rankings, is looking for his first win on any tour since the 2016 Players Championship.

Main storyline heading into Friday: Can the upstart 22-year-old Davis hold off the star power chasing him or will he fold to the pressure of major champions in his rearview mirror? Day (afternoon) and Spieth (morning) are once again on opposite ends of the draw on Friday as they try to improve their position before the weekend.

Shot of the day: It’s tough to beat an ace in this category, and we had one of those on Thursday from Australian Brad Shilton. Shilton’s hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole came with a special prize, a $16k watch.

Quote of the day: “Just two bad holes. Pretty much just two bad swings for the day,” – Day, after his 66 on Thursday. 

Watch: Shilton wins $16k timepiece with hole-in-one

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 2:50 am

Australian Brad Shilton made a hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole during the first round of the Australian Open, and he was rewarded handsomely for his efforts - with a Tag Heuer watch worth $16k.

Day gets in early mix with 66 in return to Australia

By Associated PressNovember 23, 2017, 2:32 am

SYDNEY - Jason Day's first tournament round in Australia in four years was a 5-under 66 to put him among the leaders early Thursday at the Australian Open.

Day's round came unhinged late with a double-bogey 6 on the par-4 eighth hole, his second-last of the day. He hit his tee shot into the trees on the left, hit back out to the fairway, missed his approach to the green and then couldn't get up and down.

''That was brutal,'' Day said of the 481-yard hole that played into gusting winds.

But Day recovered quickly to birdie his last to sit three strokes behind fellow Australian and early leader Cameron Davis, who started on the first, had six front-nine birdies and shot 63 at The Australian Golf Club.

In between the two was Australian Taylor MacDonald, who shot 65.

''It was a pretty solid round, I didn't miss many fairways, I didn't miss many greens,'' Day said. ''I'd give myself a seven or eight out of 10.''

Defending champion Jordan Spieth, attempting to win the Australian Open for the third time in four years, was off to a poor start among the afternoon players, bogeying his first two holes.

The Sydney-born Davis played most of this season on the Mackenzie Tour in Canada and will attempt to secure his Web.com card in the final round of qualifying from Dec. 7-10 in Chandler, Arizona.

''Everything went to plan,'' Davis said. ''I got off to a great start. I was hitting my spots and was able to keep it together on the back nine.''

NOTES: Australian Brad Shilton had the first ace of the tournament, using a 5-iron for a hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole, his second hole of the day. Australian veteran Geoff Ogilvy, the 2006 U.S. Open winner, shot 69. He and Rod Pampling (68) played the first round with Day.

Day: Woods feeling good, hitting it long

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 22, 2017, 9:33 pm

Jason Day says Tiger Woods told him he feels better than he has in three years, which is good news for Woods a week ahead of his return to the PGA Tour at the Hero World Challenge.

Day, a fellow Nike endorser, was asked about Woods during his news conference at the Emirates Australian Open on Wednesday. "I did talk to him," Day said, per a report in the Sydney Morning Herald,"and he did say it's the best he's ever felt in three years'" Day said.

"He doesn't wake up with pain anymore, which is great. I said to him, 'Look, it's great to be one of the best players ever to live, but health is one thing that we all take for granted and if you can't live a happy, healthy life, then that's difficult.'"

The Hero World Challenge will be played Nov. 30-Dec. 3 in the Bahamas and broadcast on Golf Channel and NBC.

Day, who has had his own health issues, said he could empathize with Woods.

"I totally understand where he's coming from, because sometimes I wake up in the morning and it takes me 10 minutes to get out of bed, and for him to be in pain for three years is very frustrating."

Woods has not played since February after undergoing surgery following a recurrence of back problems.

"From what I see on Instagram and what he's been telling me, he says he's ready and I'm hoping that he is, because from what I hear, he's hitting it very long," Day said.

"And if he's hitting it long and straight, then that's going to be tough for us because it is Tiger Woods. He's always been a clutch putter and in amongst the best and it will be interesting to see.

"There's no pressure. I think it's a 17- or 18-man field, there's no cut, he's playing at a tournament where last year I think he had the most birdies at."