A Quick Round with Alvaro Quiros

By Randall MellMarch 18, 2010, 9:45 pm

PGA Tour pros stop on the range and watch Alvaro Quiros hit balls more than they do just about any other player.

It happened again last week at the WGC-CA Championship at the TPC Blue Monster at Doral.

The 27-year-old Spaniard is as much a spectacle as he is a player because he hits it places other pros can’t, like off the rooftop of the Jim McLean Golf Center at the back of the range at Doral, or over the rooftop.

At 6 feet 3, with his long, whiplash of a swing, Quiros led the field in driving distance for the week at Doral, averaging 316 yards per smash, but he’s becoming about more than titanic drives. He’s a three-time European Tour winner who tied for sixth at the WGC-CA Championship, his best finish in a PGA Tour event. He is getting more time in the United States because he has climbed among the top 50 in the world rankings (No. 33 this week), which gets him into majors and World Golf Championships.

Quiros is this week's subject in a Quick Round:

Many of us imagine your swing thoughts must be something like “Kill” or “Decimate” or “Destroy” because you hit the ball so far. Are we close?

No, no, no. I try to be coordinated, to have balance with my swing and the speed.

So you aren’t imagining a missile launch when you waggle over the ball?

No, lately, I’ve been focusing on hitting the ball straight.

Where does your power come from? Is there some sort of hyper-alloy, skeletal-combat chassis beneath your skin?

I have long arms, but what’s important is the coordination and balance with the speed. It’s impossible to hit it long without that.

Is your power a gift, or can normal human beings learn to hit it long?

You can learn. If you are a child, and you practice to swing fast always, the power will come.

I’m guilty of something here and wonder if it annoys you. The focus on your power, does it bother you because it overshadows what a strong player you are becoming? You just tied for sixth at Doral.

I understand. I know people focus on my strength and that’s all, but I think as you become a better player, they start to realize how good you are. So I have to be a better player and people will realize.

What’s the most underrated part of your game?

I’m very skillful around the greens.

What are you working on most right now?

My pace, I play too quickly.

I’ve read where you’re trying to play smarter. There’s been so much focus on young players laying up this year. You hate laying up, don’t you?

Yes, and that’s cost me a lot. If it’s impossible to go for it, I will lay up, but if I know I have even a small chance of getting there, I always go for it. I’m learning.

You were paired with Tom Watson at the Dubai Desert Classic. What did you learn from him?

I learned even if you hit it shorter, you can make a lot of birdies. If I was north, he was south. You could feel how smart he was playing. At the par 5s, he didn’t need to be the closest to the green to make 4s. It’s something I have to learn.

European Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie says he has his eye on you, that you’re a player he “wants to see mature into a Ryder Cup player.” You are 10th on the European world points list (top four qualify) and 16th on the European points list (top five qualify). How important is making the team for the October matches in Wales?

Yes, it’s on my mind. It would be one of the most important tournaments that I’d play. At the same time, to be honest, it’s so far away. My scores aren’t what they need to be to play the Ryder Cup today.

You’re becoming more recognized in the United States. Do you want to play the PGA Tour?

I would like to establish myself over here. It’s something I have on my mind, but it’s not going to be possible this year because it is a Ryder Cup year. Also, I have to be happy here. To be honest, I feel lonely here. If I’m going to suffer here, it’s not a good thing. I’m very happy around Europe and being around my colleagues and being in the top 50 in the world. The real tests, I know, are world Golf Championships and majors.

What’s hardest about playing in the United States right now?

Missing family, friends, the culture is different. We have different ways, you know.

What do you like about the United States?

People love spectacular things here, they love action.

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.