Par 5 Better to Give and Receive

By Randall MellMarch 15, 2011, 5:18 pm

Setting the agenda for the week ahead with five questions for tournament golf at large ...

So who’s going to pay back the LPGA for paying it forward?

If you believe in karma, or what goes around comes around, the LPGA’s future ought to be bright.

This week the LPGA devotes itself to making the world a better place at the RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup.

Belen Mozo
LPGA rookie Belen Mozo could win this week and not get any money. (Getty Images)
It’s doing so with a significant sacrifice.

The 134 pros playing the U.S. start to the tour schedule are donating the event’s entire $1 million purse to LPGA-USGA Girls’ Golf and player-designated charities.

It’s a significant sacrifice because this isn’t the rich men’s game.

PGA Tour pros will play for more than $280 million in prize money over 47 events this year. The LPGA will play for $42 million in 24 events.

The last player to hold onto his tour card on the PGA Tour last year made $786,000. The LPGA’s equivalent made $80,000.

LPGA pros can’t afford to be this charitable, and that’s what makes this event all the more remarkable. A $1 million purse typically pays out $150,000 to the winner in LPGA events. A rookie or rank-and-file player could break through to win the Founders Cup and not receive what would be the biggest paycheck of her life, a payday that could turn her career around. A breakthrough in Phoenix will be for greater causes.

Real giving hurts, and nobody will know that better than a rookie or rank-and-file player, should they win this event.

The LPGA’s making the world a better place, and if what goes around comes around, more than a few business entities will step forward as title sponsors next year to make the LPGA a better place.
Who’s the favorite at the inaugural RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup?

Yani Tseng’s the hottest golfer, male or female, on the planet.

This week she is going for her fifth worldwide title of the year, her second LPGA title this season.

She was the tour’s Rolex Player of the Year last season, holds the No. 1 ranking in the women’s game and will be the defending champ when the season’s first women’s major is played next month.

Tseng is the hands-down favorite to win.
Can Nick Watney win the Transitions Championship for back-to-back titles?

If Watney wins at Innisbrook outside Tampa, he’ll be the first player to win back-to-back events on the PGA Tour calendar since Tiger Woods won the Buick Open and WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in the summer of 2009.

Watney’s moving up in the world, specifically from No. 31 in the world rankings last week to No. 15 this week with his victory at the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral.

His swing coach, Butch Harmon, will tell you Watney’s improved short game has much to do with making him a more consistent threat.

Can Watney win again this week? Absolutely. He seems to be in the hunt every time he tees it up lately. Here’s his record this year:

  • Farmers Insurance Open, T-6
  • Waste Management Phoenix Open, T-5
  • AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, T-6
  • WGC-Accenture Match Play, T-9
  • WGC-Cadillac Championship, Win.
    How’s the future of golf looking?

Watney, winner of the WGC-Cadillac Championship, is 29.

Dustin Johnson, who dueled Watney down the stretch at Doral, is 26.

Martin Kaymer, who joins Watney in this week’s Transitions Championship field, is also 26.

The average age of the top eight on the leaderboard going into Sunday’s final round at Doral was 28.5.

“Golf is in a great place,” Harmon said. “We’ve got so many great young players all over the world. We’ve got them right here in the States; it just seems that the world rankings have shown off more of the Europeans than the Americans. That’s because they’ve played well. But we have a lot of great young players over here, and I think you’re going to see that in the majors this year.”

Exactly how young could the new PGA Tour look at Innisbrook?

How about 17 years old?

Italy’s Matteo Manassero isn’t a PGA Tour member, but he’ll be playing the Transitions Championship on a sponsor’s exemption. He became the youngest winner of a European Tour event when he won the Castello Masters in Spain at 17 years and 188 days old. If he wins the Transitions, he’ll become the youngest winner of a PGA Tour event at 17 years and 355 days old.

A pipe dream? Manassero eliminated world No. 10 Steve Stricker and world No. 26 Charl Schwartzel in the Accenture Match Play Championship before being eliminated by the eventual champion, Luke Donald. Manassero is the No. 55 player in the world.


Follow Randall Mell on Twitter @RandallMell

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.

Getty Images

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.

Getty Images

Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

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. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

President at the Presidents Cup

Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

Cart on the green

Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

Trump golf properties


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers

Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump