Creamer decides to play LPGA Founders Cup

By Randall MellFebruary 12, 2011, 11:11 pm

LPGA Tour _newBig news for LPGA commissioner Mike Whan.

Paula Creamer told GolfChannel.com today that she will play the RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup March 18-20 at JW Marriott’s Wildfire Golf Club in Phoenix.

“I’m in!” Creamer wrote in an e-mail response to Golf Channel asking for her reaction to Friday’s news that Whan was making significant changes to the Founders Cup, moves that specifically addressed concerns Creamer had about the charity structure.

Creamer, Cristie Kerr and Morgan Pressel all expressed frustrations with the Founders Cup planning and said they were undecided about playing. Creamer told GolfChannel.com today that she’s grateful for the manner in which Whan reacted to player concerns.

“I believe Commissioner Whan has shown his leadership abilities by listening to his players and implementing changes as a result,” Creamer said.

Creamer, the reigning U.S. Women’s Open champ, told GolfChannel.com almost three weeks ago that she wanted to see the charity donation match the purse. The original Founders Cup plans called for a $500,000 charity donation with tour pros playing for a $1.3 million mock purse. On Friday, Whan announced the charity would be doubled to $1 million with the purse adjusted to $1 million.

Though players still won't win real money, they aren't really playing for a mock purse anymore. The changes mean they're now playing for real prize money that's all being donated to charity. It's a distinction that's important to Creamer.

The LPGA will now donate $500,000 of the purse to LPGA-USGA Girls Golf and $500,000 to the designated charities of the top-10 finishers of the tournament.

Creamer, before boarding a flight to Thailand for next week's start of the LPGA, sent this e-mail in response to GolfChannel.com's request for her reaction to Whan's changes:

“I am very pleased to have learned of the significant changes to the inaugural RR Donnelley Founders Cup. As I have said all along, I have no issues playing for charity in 2011 in order to honor our founders, to help the future of the game, and to create another event to showcase the talents of the LPGA to a worldwide audience.

“I appreciate the RR Donnelley company’s amazing support. I have a strong belief and hope that this event will transition to a full-field regular event in future years, with the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf as our annual charitable component, much like what all of our other LPGA events do with their respective charities. I think it is important to grow our domestic schedule and to associate with a large prestigious company like RR Donnelley. Hopefully this is the beginning of a partnership that will last decades.

“I believe Commissioner Whan has shown his leadership abilities by listening to his players and implementing changes as a result. It would have been easy to just say `maybe next year.’ I know many players shared my concern that the purse and the charitable donation did not match. But now, with the purse being fully funded like all other events, and the entire $1,000,000 purse going to charity, I am in!!

“With $500,000 going to Girls Golf and another $500,000 being player directed, I have already received dozens of requests from charities to represent them in the RR Donnelley Founders Cup. All are great causes and I hope this RR Donnelley Founders Cup will bring more awareness not only to Girls Golf but also to the many very worthwhile charities that my fellow players are dedicated to helping day in and day out. My playing in the RR Donnelley Founders Cup will personally give me the opportunity to support and direct some of the $1,000,000 charity donation. Being able to hopefully positively impact people’s lives through the RR Donnelley Founders Cup is a very, very good feeling. I am looking forward to playing.”

Though tour pros will not collect checks, they aren't playing for imaginary money anymore. It's real money that's all being donated to charity. Pros will be credited with official money winnings, world ranking points, Rolex Player of the Year and other LPGA award points.

“I certainly could have done a better job of initially articulating the details to players and media, as that has led to some confusion about the tournament’s goals and objectives,” LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said in announcing changes on Friday. 'We now look forward to a very unique tournament that will honor the LPGA’s founders, showcase and celebrate today’s LPGA players, and provide for the future of the game.”

The Founders Cup winner will have $200,000 donated to the charity of her choice. Another $300,000 will be dispersed to the charity choices of the other top-10 finishers.

 

Follow Randall Mell on Twitter @RandallMell

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 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.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.