Hooks & Cuts: Royal romp

By Rich LernerJuly 17, 2012, 10:18 pm

Here is the latest version of Hooks and Cuts as we’re on the cusp of the 141st Open Championship, at Royal Lytham & St. Annes:

• When the number of bunkers begins to approach the total weight loss of a contestant on “Biggest Loser,” you know you’re on a tough layout. Two hundred five is a big number.

• I get that Tiger Woods' recent major record is not what we’d grown accustomed to seeing five years ago, but to question whether or not he’s back is preposterous. Three wins for anyone else by mid July and we’d be throwing around terms like superstar, career season and player of the year.

• With its banks on trial, economic austerity measures a grim reality, and Andy Murray’s Wimbledon fairytale fizzling, the Kingdom could use a ray of sunshine, which in July in England is rainy and 55. Welcome to the Open.

• When Rory McIlroy whined about the wind and rain last year you thought, hmmm, the youngster needs a stern lecture from the godfather of golf in Northern Ireland, Darren Clarke, like Don Corleone barking to Johnny Fontane in the epic movie, “You can act like a man!” Rory had said there’s no point in changing your game for one week a year. Well there is, if you value winning the oldest trophy in the game. To his credit, Rory admits his attitude was born of frustration and that he’s now prepared to embrace the elements.

• Phil Mickelson went almost two decades at a loss on the links, but now seems to grasp that to really burnish his legacy he needs to win a British and he came close a year ago by reveling in it. Suddenly the guy who grew up in weather paradise in San Diego loves the nasty stuff. Maybe he should’ve bought the Seattle Mariners instead of his hometown Padres.

• Trying to figure out who will win is futile, since Louis and Clarke - as well as that other tandem of unknown explorers Tod Hamilton and Ben Curtis - were on no one’s radar and radar’s especially hard to decipher in bad weather.

• Let it blow, let it lash at them and we’ll see who’s stout of heart. Rain at the British is as good as snow at Lambeau. It defines toughness.

• Padraig Harrington’s a fashionable choice. I always recall what he said three years ago: “I have never been the most naturally gifted golfer but I have a strong mental capacity to compete.'

• Round 1 at a British usually delivers the unknown Scandinavian to the top of the manual yellow and black scoreboard, like a Lars Skundelgard or a Sven Stunstublorv.

• Tiger tees off just after 4:30 a.m. Eastern time. That’s perfect, just when those of us men of a certain age are bouncing out of bed for our first Avodart moment of the day.

• Lee Westwood and Luke Donald are currently the best without a major, but no one needs one more than Sergio Garcia.

• With brutal rough in spots and those 205 bunkers, your average 15 handicap shoots what at Lytham? Do they break 150? I’m not so sure.

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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.

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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

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm