Furyk Leads South Africans at Wachovia

By Sports NetworkMay 6, 2006, 4:00 pm
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Jim Furyk posted a 4-under 68 on Saturday to move into the lead after three rounds of the Wachovia Championship. He stands at 11-under-par 205 and is one ahead at Quail Hollow Club.
Two-time U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen would have been tied for the lead, but an errant drive at the 18th cost him. He ended up with a 7-under 65 and is tied with Trevor Immelman, who posted a 66 on Saturday, at 10-under-par 206.
Adam Scott
Adam Scott played a five-hole stretch in 7 under Saturday.
Overnight leader Bo Van Pelt struggled on Saturday, but did not shoot himself out of the tournament. He managed a 1-over 73 and is alone in fourth place at minus-9.
Shaun Micheel, the 2003 PGA champion, carded a 4-under 68 in round three and has sole possession of fifth place at minus-8.
The second round was completed Saturday morning after two weather delays forced the stoppage of play on Friday. After the cut, Van Pelt carried a three-shot lead into the third round.
The margin did not last long as Van Pelt bogeyed his first hole and Furyk rolled in a 24-foot birdie putt at No. 3. Furyk, now within one, made a mess of the fourth to fall two behind again.
Furyk, the 2003 U.S. Open champion, atoned for the miscue at four with a two-putt birdie at the par-5 fifth. Several players threatened the lead, but no player overtook the duo as they both parred the next three holes.
Furyk drew even with Van Pelt thanks to a 3-foot birdie putt at the ninth and both players birdied 10. The pair seemed destined for trouble at 11 as each was in the trees off the tee. Van Pelt played his second down the 12th fairway and pitched his third to 37 feet. Furyk came up short of the green with his approach and chipped to 7 feet. Both holed their par putts to stay at minus-10.
At the par-3 13th, Van Pelt came up 55 feet short of the hole and his birdie try came up 7 feet short. He missed the par putt to fall one behind Furyk as Goosen became the primary challenger to Furyk's lead.
Goosen flew up the leaderboard thanks to his strong play on the back nine. He made the turn at 1 under par, but a 10-foot birdie putt at 10 triggered four consecutive birdies.
He parred 14, then ran home an 8-footer for birdie at the 15th. Goosen tied Furyk in the lead with a 7-foot birdie putt at the 16th and moved ahead with a 6-footer at the 17th.
Goosen hit a horrible drive at Quail Hollow's closing hole and landed in the water. He took a drop, then hit his third into a greenside bunker. Goosen blasted out to a foot and tapped in his bogey.
'I was moaning a bit out there today on the front nine. I hit a few good shots and never really got anything going,' said Goosen. 'On the back nine it suddenly all came at once. I'm happy where I am, somewhere around the lead.'
Immelman was 2 under at the turn, then collected four birdies on his back nine, including a 14-foot birdie putt at the last.
Both Goosen and Immelman were in the clubhouse at 10 under par. Furyk hit a spectacular approach to a foot to set up birdie at the 16th. He was 11 under par, and parred both of his final holes to take the 54-hole lead.
'Obviously I'm happy with the way I played,' said Furyk, who lost in a playoff here last year. 'I'm happy to be out front at this point. I've got another round of golf tomorrow and I need to go out there and attack the golf course again and try to post one more good round.'
Furyk held a piece of the 54-hole lead a few weeks back in Hilton Head. He eventually lost to Aaron Baddeley, so Furyk is anxious to get another crack at win No. 11 on the PGA TOUR.
'I think that it was a good opportunity to win, and I think usually in those situations for the first 30 minutes to hour afterwards you're pretty bitter, and for the next day you're a little disappointed, and eventually you realize you're going to have to get over it and go out there's more days to play golf,' said Furyk.
Adam Scott (66) and Lucas Glover (67) are knotted in sixth place at 7-under-par 209.
Defending champion Vijay Singh (71), Steve Lowery (69) and Shigeki Maruyama (67) are tied for eighth place at minus-7.
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    Fleetwood flawless en route to Abu Dhabi lead

    By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 2:06 pm

    New year, same results for Tommy Fleetwood.

    The reigning Race to Dubai champ picked up where he left off in the opening round of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, carding a bogey-free 66 during which the Englishman found all 18 greens in regulation. At 6 under, he shares the lead with Japan's Hideto Tanihara and sits one shot clear of five other players.

    "Very stress-free. Played really well from start to finish," Fleetwood said. "Felt like I did what you need to do around this golf course, which is drive it well, hit your irons solid. You can't really be too greedy a lot of the time, and then sort of my pace putting was really good. So basically just did what you need to do to get a good score around this golf course, and I got one."

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    Fleetwood shined in a marquee grouping that included world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy, as he birdied three holes on each nine. This is his first worldwide start since a T-3 finish at the Hero World Challenge.

    It was at this event a year ago that Fleetwood sparked a career campaign, edging Johnson and Pablo Larrazabal for the win. He added another win at the French Open in the summer to go along with a pair of runner-up results and a T-4 finish at the U.S. Open, all of which helped him capture the European Tour's season-long title.

    Fleetwood's sudden success in Abu Dhabi serves as a microcosm for his career resurgence. Prior to last year's victory, he had missed the cut in four of his five other trips to this event.

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    Sergio starts season with 66 in Singapore

    By Associated PressJanuary 18, 2018, 12:56 pm

    SINGAPORE – Sergio Garcia opened his season with a 5-under 66 and a share of the clubhouse lead on Thursday in the first round of the weather-interrupted Singapore Open.

    Playing his first tournament of the year, the Masters champion rebounded after making an early bogey to collect four birdies and an eagle at the Sentosa Golf Club.

    He was later joined by American qualifier Kurt Kitayama in the clubhouse lead. Still on the course, Tirawat Kaewsiribandit was at 6 under through 16 holes when play was suspended for the day because of the threat of lightning.

    Louis Oosthuizen, the 2010 Open champion, was at 5 under through 16 holes when he also had to stop his round because of the weather.

    Of the players who did finish their opening rounds, only three were within two strokes of Garcia and Kitayama. One of them was Casey O'Toole, who aced the par-3 second with a 7-iron.

    The 38-year-old Garcia dropped his only shot of the day on the par-4 15th, his sixth hole after teeing off on the back nine, when he missed the fairway and was unable to make par. But he made amends when he birdied the par-3 17th and then eagled the par-5 18th to go out in 33.

    ''I was 1 over after (the) seventh but it didn't feel like I was playing badly,'' said Garcia, who made birdies on each of the two par 5s and one of the par 3s on the second nine. ''But then I hit two greats in a row for holes 17 and 18. I got a birdie-eagle there, so that settled me a little bit and I could play solid in the back nine and it was a great round.''

    Garcia made the shortlist for the Laureus Sports Awards in the Breakthrough of the Year category after claiming his first major at Augusta National last year and is hoping for more success this season.

    He credits the Singapore Open as having played a part in toughening him up for his Masters win because he opted to start his 2017 campaign in the stifling humidity of Southeast Asia to prepare himself for the bigger tournaments ahead.

    Although he finished tied for 11th in Singapore, Garcia won the Dubai Desert Classic the next week and was in peak form when he won the Masters two months later.

    Kitayama only secured his place in the $1 million event on Monday by finishing at the top of the qualifying competition, but he made a strong start with birdies on three of his first five holes. The 25-year-old Thai was 6 under through 13 holes but spoiled his otherwise flawless round with a bogey on his last.

    ''I started with a birdie and I just let it roll from there. I had some good tee shots, which I think, is the biggest thing for this course,'' Kitayama said. ''I'm a little tired, but I'm hanging in there. Whenever I have time off, I'll try not to think too much about golf.''

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    13-year-old beats DJ in closest-to-the-pin contest

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 18, 2018, 12:26 pm

    Dustin Johnson didn’t just get beat by Tommy Fleetwood and Rory McIlroy on Day 1 of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Even a 13-year-old got the best of the world No. 1.

    Oscar Murphy teed off on the 177-yard 15th hole as part of the tournament’s Beat the Pro challenge during the opening round. The Northern Irishman, one of the HSBC’s Future Falcons, carved a 3-wood toward a back-right pin, about 25 feet away, closer than both Johnson and Fleetwood.

    “An unbelievable shot,” Fleetwood said afterward, “and me and Rory both said, ‘We don’t have that in our locker.’”

    Johnson still made par on the hole, but he mixed four birdies with four bogeys Thursday for an even-par 72 that left him six shots back of Fleetwood and Hideto Tanihara after the opening round.

    Johnson, who tied for second here a year ago, is coming off a dominant performance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions, where he won by eight shots to strengthen his lead atop the world rankings. 

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    McIlroy 'really pleased' with opening 69 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 18, 2018, 12:10 pm

    It was an auspicious 2018 debut for Rory McIlroy.

    Playing alongside world No. 1 Dustin Johnson for his first round since October, McIlroy missed only one green and shot a bogey-free 69 at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. McIlroy is three shots back of reigning Race to Dubai champion Tommy Fleetwood, who played in the same group as McIlroy and Johnson, and Hideto Tanihara.

    Starting on the back nine at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, McIlroy began with 11 consecutive pars before birdies on Nos. 3, 7 and 8.

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    “I was excited to get going,” he told reporters afterward. “The last couple of months have been really nice in terms of being able to concentrate on things I needed to work on in my game and health-wise. I feel like I’m the most prepared for a season that I’ve ever been, but it was nice to get back out there.”

    Fleetwood, the defending champion, raced out to another lead while McIlroy and Johnson, who shot 72, just tried to keep pace.

    “Tommy played very well and I was just trying to hang onto his coattails for most of the round, so really pleased – bogey-free 69, I can’t really complain,” McIlroy said.

    This was his first competitive round in more than three months, since a tie for 63rd at the Dunhill Links. He is outside the top 10 in the world ranking for the first time since 2014.