By Randall MellJune 21, 2009, 4:00 pm
2009 U.S. OpenFARMINGDALE, N.Y. ' Playing the U.S. Open is beginning to feel like jumping on and off a merry-go-round.
The weather delays are creating a dizzying feel to this championship with players joking that they arent sure when one round ends and another begins.
After posting a 2-under-par 68 Sunday that left him nine shots back at Bethpage Black, Tiger Woods was asked if he knew what round he just completed.
We cant even remember what day were playing, Woods said. It just all blurs together.
Woods had just finished the third round late Sunday afternoon. As he spoke to media, U.S. Golf Association officials were preparing to start the final round and squeeze in as many holes as possible before darkness.
When Ricky Barnes closed out the third round with a bogey for an even-par 70, it was 5:01 p.m. The 54-hole leader wouldnt get a lot of time to dwell on the mistake. He was scheduled to go off again at 7:37 p.m. The late start to the final round guarantees that the U.S. Open will finish regulation on a Monday for the first time since 1983.
The upside is that Barnes was spared having to sleep on a 54-hole lead in a major.
A restless night and then a long wait until a late-afternoon final-round tee time heightens pressure on a leader.
Because you dont have to sleep on it, you dont have to go home and think about it, said Lucas Glover, one shot back through 54 holes in a bid to win his first major.
The disjointed nature of play may help underdogs like Barnes and Glover.
Glover was asked if it bothered him that he might have to warm up early Sunday evening and only play one hole before darkness caused play to be suspended.
Might be one less we have to play on Tuesday, Glover cracked.
Tuesday? That notion only makes that merry-go-round feel like its going faster.
Rain wreaked havoc with play on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, making it impossible to finish up play on Sunday.
It feels like groundhog day, said Sean OHair, who started the final round tied for eighth and seven shots back. It feels like the same day over and over again.
Graeme McDowell said the disorienting nature of starting and stopping play, and the way that causes conditions to change within a round, alters the nature of the major championship test. He joked that he lost track of what day, round and even what tournament he was playing.
Its just been kind of difficult to keep yourself motivated, said McDowell, who starts the final round eight shots back.
Hunter Mahan also feels the changing nature of the challenge. He was six back after three rounds.
Conditions would be soft and benign for the start of the final round early Sunday evening, but Mahan wasnt sure what to expect on Monday.
Its just awkward that youre going to play the final round of the U.S. Open on two days and two different types of conditions, he said. (On Monday), I think its supposed to be windy. Its just weird. It doesnt feel like a U.S. Open.
Woods isnt immune to the disorienting effects of all the delays.
Its just gearing up, gearing down, gearing up, gearing down, he said.
The U.S. Open is testing everyones gears this week.
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    Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

    By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

    One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

    Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

    "I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

    Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

    "I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

    Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

    "Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

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    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

    The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.

    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.

    Masters victory

    Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

    Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

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    Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

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    Man of the people

    Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

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    Growing family

    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

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    Departure from TaylorMade

    Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade

    Squashed beef with Paddy

    Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

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    Victory at Valderrama

    Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm