Teske Takes Over First Place

By Sports NetworkOctober 11, 2003, 4:00 pm
THE WOODLANDS, Texas -- Australian Rachel Teske fired a 6-under 66 on Saturday to take over first place after the third round of the Samsung World Championship. She stands at 11-under-par 205 and owns a one-shot lead over Beth Daniel and overnight leader Se Ri Pak.
Defending champion Annika Sorenstam, who officially became a member of both the LPGA Tour and World Golf Halls of Fame after her first round Friday, carded a 4-under 68 on Saturday and is alone in fourth place at 9-under-par 207.
Teske played an average front nine at the TPC at The Woodlands as she made the turn in 1-under-par 35 and got to 6 under for the championship. She knocked her approach on No. 11 to two feet to set up birdie and get within one shot of the lead that Daniel, her playing partner on Saturday, held.
Teske sank an eight-footer for birdie at the par-3 14th to tie for the lead with a large cast of players but fell behind Daniel at the 15th when Teske made birdie and Daniel holed an eagle putt from the fringe.
The Australian drew even with Daniel at minus-10 one hole later when she holed out for a birdie from a greenside bunker. Teske hit a 7-iron over the stick at 17 but missed her birdie chance. Daniel could not pull ahead at the hole despite having a shorter birdie putt.
At the 18th, Teske played her second shot to four feet while Daniel pulled her's 20 feet left of the stick. Daniel missed her putt and Teske cashed in on her try to go one ahead of her Hall of Fame partner.
But Pak remained on the course and within striking distance.
Pak, who led after both the first and second rounds, birdied the first hole Saturday but parred her next 12 holes. She hit her tee ball to four feet at the par-3 14th and rolled home the birdie putt to reach 9 under par for the tournament.
Pak seemed to be in trouble at the par-5 15th when she sailed over the green with her second. She elected to pitch into a hill and try and roll the ball toward the hole but it got stuck on the fringe. Pak was able to two-putt from approximately the same distance as Daniel's eagle try and save par.
The No. 2 player in the world hit another beautiful iron shot at the par-3 16th and once again sank a short birdie putt to tie for the lead at minus-10.
Pak had a pair of seven-footers for birdie at the final two holes but missed on both opportunities and settled for a 3-under 69.
That gave Teske her first 54-hole lead since the event in Rochester this summer, the second of her back-to-back wins this summer.
Daniel carded a 5-under 67 on Saturday and already has the record for oldest winner in LPGA Tour history. A win on Sunday would just change the numbers in the record book.
But neither of the three players ahead are forgetting about Sorenstam, who tied for the lead after a 20-foot birdie putt at the 14th. She ran home a seven-footer for birdie at the next hole to keep pace but parred her final three holes, including a near birdie at 18, for her 68.
'I made some good putts today,' said Sorenstam, a five-time winner on tour this season. 'I thought I played really good. On the back nine, I really tightened my swing and had a lot more birdie chances.'
Sophie Gustafson (69) and Juli Inkster (70) share fifth place at minus-6, followed by Cristie Kerr and Lorie Kane, who shot matching 70s on Saturday, to tie for seventh at 5-under-par 211.
Meg Mallon (70) and Grace Park (73) share ninth at minus-4.
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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.