Casey Losing Grip on Money Title

By Sports NetworkOctober 28, 2006, 4:00 pm
2005 Volvo MastersSOTOGRANDE, Spain -- Jeev Milkha Singh, who claimed his first European Tour win in April, shot a 3-under 68 on Saturday to take the lead heading into the final round of the season-ending Volvo Masters.
Singh birdied two of the last four holes at Valderrama to dissolve a logjam at the top of the leaderboard, ending three rounds at 3-under-par 210 for a one-shot lead over four players.
Already a four-time winner on the Asian Tour, Singh finally broke through for his first European Tour win at the Volvo China Open six months ago. Along the way, he learned something about closing out a victory.
'I've got to just keep my head down and go,' said Singh, who was the first Indian golfer to qualify for The European Tour when he won his tour card in 1997.
That might be a better idea than looking back, where there are 11 players within three shots of Singh's lead.
Spain's own Sergio Garcia, the world No. 9, shot his second consecutive 1-under 70 and shares second place with Swedes Johan Edfors (69) and Henrik Stenson (73) and Englishman Lee Westwood (72) at 2-under 211.
John Bickerton (70) and David Lynn (72) of England are one shot further back at 212.
Among the remaining pack, there are four players vying for their first Order of Merit title as the European Tour's leading money winner.
Current leader Paul Casey of England had his best round of the week, an even- par 71 that moved him into a tie for 32nd place at 6-over 219. Casey continues to recover from a virus that required him to receive an injection on Thursday, when he opened with a 76.
Each of his challengers for the Harry Vardon Trophy sits in considerably better position, due mostly to that first-round score.
'Unfortunately the tournament is lost,' Casey admitted. 'There's nothing I can do about that. The first two days when I was ill pretty much killed off my chances of being in contention.
'Whatever happens happens,' he added. 'It would certainly be disappointing (not to win the Order of Merit) but I don't think it would be a crushing disappointment. If it does not happen, I have plenty more chances. But I certainly want the Order of Merit before I hang up the clubs.'
Irishman Padraig Harrington, who snared second place in the rankings with a victory two weeks ago, had a 72 on Saturday but remains within striking distance at 1-over 214.
Harrington was 2 under through 11 holes, but bogeyed three straight from No. 14 to fall into a tie for 13th place.
'Four behind is not the end of the world, but I've put a lot of people between me and the lead and you've got to think somebody is going to shoot a decent score (Sunday),' said Harrington.
'It's not insurmountable, but when I was coasting along winning was a lot easier prospect than it is now.'
The No. 3 and 4 challengers, Englishman David Howell and Swede Robert Karlsson, are tied for eighth place at even-par 213 after both shot 1-under 70.
Howell, once vying to become the first wire-to-wire Order of Merit champion before he suffered a shoulder injury, birdied five consecutive holes early in his round. But he posted four bogeys without another birdie the rest of the way.
'I was in a nice little zone early on,' Howell said, 'but then came the three- putt. Classic error, momentum lost. After being five under through seven it was obviously disappointing only to score 70.'
Karlsson recovered from a 74 on Friday and birdied the 17th hole to get to even par. He and Howell share eighth place with Sweden's Niclas Fasth (71), France's Raphael Jacquelin (69) and Germany's Marcel Siem (72).
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    Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

    Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.

    Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.

    As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.

    "That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."

    Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.

    Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.

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    Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

    If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.

    Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.

    But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.

    Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.

    Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:

    Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180

    Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70

    Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5

    Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450

    Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200

    Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000

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    Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

    SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.

    Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.

    “It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.

    Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.

    “What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”

    Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.

    “When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”

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    Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

    SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.

    Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.

    Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim. 

    Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.