Clark Wins South African Open

By Sports NetworkJanuary 13, 2002, 5:00 pm
Tim Clark shot a 7-under 65 to win the South African Open Sunday. Clark finished at 19-under 269, two shots ahead of England's Steve Webster.
 
The young South African had eight birdies and one bogey to take his place atop the leaderboard. After earning a spot in the field through the pre-qualifying tournament, Clark dominated the final two rounds to earn his first win on the European Tour.
 
'I just wanted to come out and show I deserved a spot in the tournament,' said Clark, who became the first player to win after pre-qualifying for a tournament since Paul Lawrie captured the British Open in 1999.
 
Clark began the day with a two-stroke advantage over Retief Goosen and quickly added to the margin with birdies on the second and third. He birdied the eighth and ninth to make the turn at 16-under.
 
The 26-year-old birdied the first hole on the back nine before making his only bogey of the day on the 11th. Clark responded with a birdie on the following hole and secured the win with back-to-back birdies from the 14th.
 
Clark played his way onto the PGA Tour last year after finishing third on the Buy.Com money list in 2000. However, a wrist injury that required surgery forced him to miss a large part of the season.
 
This year he will carry momentum onto the American circuit and will look to earn his first win on that tour at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
 
'This helps my confidence for the U.S. PGA tour. I am not sure about the wrist yet, but it seems fine at the moment.'
 
Webster came from three shots back at the beginning of the round to pose a threat to Clark and fired the low score of the day with an 8-under 64, a mark matched only by David Park of Wales.
 
In an attempt to become the first Englishman to win the South African Open since 1970, Webster eagled the par-5 third but dropped a shot with a bogey on the fourth. He birdied three of the next four holes but remained three shots off the lead.
 
'Every time I looked at the board, Tim had birdied again, so all credit to him,' said Webster.
 
He came within one stroke of Clark after back-to-back birdies from the 13th, but eventually fell short in his attempt to earn his first victory on the European tour and finished at 17-under 271.
 
'I do feel the first win is just around the corner,' he said. 'I always play well in South Africa and Houghton next week is one of my favorite courses. I am looking forward to the Dunhill Championship.'
 
James Kingston, who led after the second round, had six birdies and two bogeys for a round of 68. The South African finished alongside England's Jonathan Lomas at 13-under 275.
 
U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen, who trailed Clark by two strokes to begin the final round, managed a two-under 70 to finish at 12-under 276. He was joined by Park, England's Simon Dyson (67) and Alastair Forsyth (69) of Scotland.
 
Full-Field Scores from the Bell's South African Open
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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.