Clark Moves Three Clear in South Africa

By Sports NetworkJanuary 25, 2002, 5:00 pm
Sunshine TourTim Clark continued his fine play at the Woodhill Country Club posting a 5-under 67 Friday. Clark moved to 11-under 133, three shots ahead of his closest competitors at the halfway point of the Telkom PGA Championship.
 
The 26-year-old played a flawless round with five birdies and no bogeys. After complaining about his putting in the first round, he appeared more satisfied with his performance heading into the weekend.
 
'I hit every green, like I did in the final round of the South African Open,' said Clark. 'I've got that level of concentration I had there. I missed it at the Dunhill Championship because, coming so soon after the South African Open, it's difficult to maintain that level of concentration.'
 
The Durban native notched his first European Tour win at the South African Open earlier this month. He earned his PGA Tour card after finishing third on the 2000 Buy.com money list.
 
A wrist injury forced Clark to miss most of the 2001 season. He will play the 2002 campaign under a medical exemption.
 
'When I was injured, I certainly didn't expect to be winning these events. But my game's obviously come around quite nicely,' he said.
 
Clark is scheduled to return to the PGA Tour at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am next week, although he remains uncertain he will make the trip due to his current lead in the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit.
 
'I haven't decided what I'm going to do yet,' he said. 'For now I'm just trying to win here, and hopefully that will seal the Order of Merit title for me. I just want to concentrate on the next two rounds, and I'll take it from there.'
 
A first-place finish in the Order of Merit would grant Clark an automatic entry into both the British Open and the World Golf Championship's World Match Play.
 
Don Gammon (68), Marco Gortana (68) and overnight co-leader Michael Kirk (70) are tied for second at eight-under 136.
 
Gammon made the cut at both the South African Open and the Dunhill Championship leading up to this event. The 31-year-old is eager to earn his first win on the Sunshine Tour this year.
 
'I'm just chipping away, hoping that one of these days I'll break through with a win,' he said.
 
A group of seven remained one-shot further back at 7-under 137, including overnight co-leaders Andrew McLardy (71) and American Bruce Vaughan (71).
 
England's Chris Williams had the low round of the day with a 64. He leads a group of eight knotted at 6-under 138.
 
Norman Mashada had an ace on the 221-yard 12th. The shot helped Mashada make the halfway cut which fell at 1-over 145.
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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.