Kung Slams Sorenstam at Match Play

By Sports NetworkJuly 2, 2005, 4:00 pm
GLADSTONE, N.J. -- No. 1 seed Annika Sorenstam blew a 2-up lead with four holes to play on Saturday en route to losing to eighth-seeded Candie Kung in the quarterfinals of the HSBC Women's World Match Play Championship.
Kung won 1-up as Sorenstam missed a 5-foot par putt on the final hole.
'I made a few mistakes on the last four holes,' admitted Sorenstam. 'Sometimes there's not much you can do. Candie played really good and sometimes it doesn't go your way. I think that's what happened on the last hole.'
Annika Sorenstam
Annika Sorenstam was all smiles early but in the end Candie Kung beat the No. 1 player in the world.
The two came up the par-4 18th at Hamilton Farm Golf Club tied and both found the fairway off the tee. Neither hit the green with their second shots, and were almost equally away from the hole on different sides of the green.
Sorenstam got relief from a sprinkler head right of the short grass, then putted 5 feet past the hole. Kung lagged her putt from the left side to tap-in territory and was conceded par.
Sorenstam blew her putt by on the right side and it was Kung who moved to Sunday's semifinals.
'I couldn't believe she missed that, but I'm going to play tomorrow,' said Kung.
Kung will face Marisa Baena, No. 60, in one of Sunday's semifinal matches. Baena knocked off 29th-ranked Karrie Webb, 2 and 1.
Meena Lee also benefited from a missed short putt on the final hole in her quarterfinal match. Pat Hurst, the 39th seed, hit the side of the cup from 3 feet on the 18th to lose, 1-down to the No. 47 seed.
Lee will meet Wendy Ward, the 14th-ranked player, in the semifinals. Ward bested No. 59 Sophie Gustafson, 2 and 1.
Sorenstam built a 2-up lead with a 25-foot birdie putt at the 12th and a 5-footer at No. 13. Kung answered with a 12-footer at the 15th. Sorenstam had a chance to halve the hole, but her try from 10 feet missed.
Kung drew even at No. 16. A bad drive by Sorenstam led to bogey, then Kung nearly won the 17th, but her birdie putt lipped out of the hole.
Kung closed it out on 18 giving her the upset, although not as big an upset as some might think. Kung is eighth on the LPGA Tour money list and is a three- time winner on tour.
'I really don't feel like I put extra pressure on myself,' said Kung. 'I felt pretty confident with my game and feel like I'm up there with her. I hit my shots closer than her pretty much all day long.'
Baena never trailed in her match with Webb and was 1-up at the turn. Webb came up short in the fringe with her third at the par-5 14th, while Baena's ball stopped 10 feet from the hole. Webb missed her try and Baena converted her putt to move 2-up.
Webb made a mess of the par-4 15th as she went from the left rough into a greenside bunker. She made bogey and fell 3-down with only three to play.
The Australian made things interesting at 16. She hit her approach to 5 feet, while Baena was over the green with her second. Baena's chip came up 3 feet short of Webb's ball so Baena conceded the hole and moved to the 17th.
Webb's 4-iron landed in a right, greenside bunker and Baena played to the center of the putting surface. Webb blasted out to 5 feet and Baena lagged up just inside Webb, who rolled in her par putt. Baena sank her short par-saver to move into the semifinals.
Hurst evened the match at the 13th, then drained an 8-footer at No. 14 to win the hole and go 1-up. Lee rolled in a 10-foot birdie putt to square the match at 15, then Hurst missed a nine-footer to lose the 16th and fall 1-down.
The players halved 17 although Hurst's 20-footer that could have squared the match came up a foot short. At 18, Lee's second came up 65 feet short. Her birdie try came up 12 feet short and Hurst, who missed the green with her approach, chipped to 3 feet. Lee's par try never touched the hole, but Hurst hit her short putt too hard and missed right.
Gustafson built a 2-up lead around the turn thanks to a 7-foot eagle at the ninth. Ward won No. 10, then rolled in a 20-footer for birdie at 11 when two putts could have won the hole.
Ward took the 13th when Gustafson had trouble getting out of a bunker. Ward extended her cushion when she won No. 15, then the duo parred in to give Ward the match.
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    Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

    By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

    One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

    Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

    "I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

    Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

    "I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

    Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

    "Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

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    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

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    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

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    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.

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    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.

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