Wie Out Furyk Campbell on Top

By Sports NetworkJanuary 13, 2006, 5:00 pm
2006 Sony OpenHONOLULU -- Michelle Wie's second round as a professional on the PGA Tour was much better than her first, but it was not enough to allow her to make her first cut in a men's event.
Wie shot a 2-under 68 on Friday, including four birdies in a five-hole span, to finish two rounds at the Sony Open in Hawaii at 7-over-par 147. That was four shots from the 36-hole cut line, but her round was 11 strokes better than her 79 on Thursday.
Stuart Appleby and Vijay Singh
Last week's playoff combatants, Stuart Appleby and Vijay Singh, are again in contention this week.
'I have a lot of mixed feelings,' admitted Wie. 'I'm sad that I'm not going to be playing tomorrow. I'm really happy that I played good today.'
Jim Furyk and Chad Campbell both posted rounds of 3-under 67 on Friday and share the lead. The pair is knotted at 6-under-par 134 and are one ahead of fellow American David Toms.
Toms, the 2001 PGA Champion, shot a 1-under 69 on Friday and is through two rounds at Waialae Country Club at minus-5.
Stuart Appleby, who won last week's Mercedes Championships for the third consecutive year, carded a 4-under 66 on Friday. He is tied for fourth place with Jerry Smith (67) and tour rookies J.B. Holmes (66) and Camilo Villegas (64) at 4-under-par 136.
Wie started well on Friday when she birdied the second hole, which played as the most difficult in Thursday's first round. The 16-year-old lost her chance at making the cut with three consecutive bogeys from the fourth, but she put on a show around the turn.
She kicked in a 3-foot birdie putt at eight, then made it two in a row with a 10-footer at the ninth. Wie drained a 12-foot birdie putt at 11, then birdied 12 from 5 feet.
Wie traded two birdies and two bogeys the rest of her round, but can take solace in her finish. She tied the PGA Tour's biggest rookies from last year, Sean O'Hair and Jason Gore, and beat reigning Tour Championship winner Bart Bryant and former major winners Sean Micheel and Todd Hamilton.
'What I realized this week is that even though I'm playing bad, what I have to learn is how to minimize the damage,' said Wie. 'I have to become a lot more consistent with my game. I have to become a better grinder.'
Furyk, who won this title in 1996, hit the stick with his approach at the par-4 second and made birdie. He rolled in a 12-footer for birdie at the eighth, and that putt put him at 5 under, which was good for the lead.
He extended the margin at the next hole, the par-5 ninth. Furyk's second landed in the right rough, but the seventh-ranked player in the world chipped his third to a foot. He tapped in to reach 6 under par.
From there, Furyk played solid golf, hitting to the centers of most greens. He had a good look at birdie from 10 feet at the 14th, but the putt never fell. Furyk saved par after an errant drive at 15, but squandered another good birdie chance when his 10-foot birdie putt at the 17th was never hit hard enough. He also did not take advantage at the par-5 closing hole, but Furyk is still happy with his spot on the leaderboard.
'It was a good, solid round today and obviously I'm happy with my position,' said Furyk. 'I feel like I could have squeezed an extra couple shots on that second side. I need to keep playing well and have a good weekend.'
Campbell broke out of the gate with a 5-foot birdie putt at the first. He gave the shot back with a bogey at three, when he missed both the fairway and green, and did not register another birdie until he two-putted from 15 feet on the ninth.
At the next hole, Campbell, who won last year's rain-shortened Nissan Open, drove left of the short grass. He missed the green with his second, then chipped to 20 feet and failed to convert the par putt.
That would be Campbell's last mistake of the round. He knocked his approach to 4 feet to set up birdie at the 12th. Campbell then ran home a pair of 12-foot birdie tries at 14 and 16 to get in at minus-6.
'The last two days I've played really well,' acknowledged Campbell. 'I had two months off and I didn't play anything in the offseason, so it was nice to get refreshed and come out here and play well.'
First-round leader Rory Sabbatini struggled to a 2-over 72 on Friday and is tied for eighth place. Jerry Kelly (69), K.J. Choi (71), former U.S. Open champion Steve Jones (68), Dudley Hart (68), Jeff Gove (71), Peter Lonard (70), Bubba Watson (70) and Champions Tour player Loren Roberts (68) joined Sabbatini at minus-3.
Defending champion Vijay Singh, who lost to Appleby in a playoff last week, posted a 1-under 69 and is part of a group tied for 29th place at even-par 140.
David Duval shot a 2-under 68 and made the cut on the number at 3-over-par 143.
Related Links:
  • Wie's Scorecard
  • Leaderboard - Sony Open in Hawaii
  • Full Coverage - Sony Open in Hawaii
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    McIlroy 'happy to be back', can 'empathize' with Tiger

    By Associated PressJanuary 16, 2018, 3:50 pm

    ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – After a long layoff from golf, Rory McIlroy has some newfound sympathy for Tiger Woods.

    The 28-year-old Northern Irishman is making a comeback at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship after ending his season early last year. He has not played a round since the final day of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship on Oct. 8.

    McIlroy, a four-time major champion who has slipped to No. 11 in the world rankings, last won the Tour Championship on the PGA Tour in September 2016. He injured a rib in his first outing of 2017 – at the South African Open – and felt its after-effects throughout the year.

    McIlroy, who has seven top-five finishes in his last eight starts in Abu Dhabi, said Tuesday he felt mentally low because of his physical issues.

    ''Honestly, I was excited to be done. I could have shut it down after the PGA Championship very easily and taken the rest of the year off, but I didn't. I played six events after that, played OK and had a chance to win one of them,'' McIlroy said. ''But I was just excited to take that time off and get myself just sort of a re-set.''

    Last week, McIlroy also revealed that he has a minor, non-threatening heart condition that needs regular check-ups.

    ''After that 3-plus months of a re-set, I'm very happy to be back. I felt like I needed it physically and mentally. I just felt like it was a little bit of a sabbatical. I've been out here for 10 years, and I want to get ready for the next 10.''

    McIlroy compared his situation to what Woods has been going through.

    ''I've only been through, maybe, not even 5 percent of what he's had to go through. And you can tell from where he was to where he is now mentally, because of physically where he is ... he's a totally different person,'' McIlroy said. ''Of course, I empathize with him, and I know he was in a dark place there for a while. It's just so great to see him out of that and back and excited to be playing golf again.''

    The Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship will be the first of back-to-back events for McIlroy, who is also playing next week in Dubai.

    ''I think the next two weeks will be a big learning curve, just to see where I'm at,'' McIlroy said. ''I'm obviously coming into the events trying to play as well as I can and trying to compete and trying to win, but I think there will definitely be things I'll have to work on going into that stretch in the States.''

    The tournament, which starts Thursday, has attracted some big names, including top-ranked Dustin Johnson, No. 6 Justin Rose, No. 9 Henrik Stenson, No. 14 Paul Casey and No. 15 Matt Kuchar. No. 18 Tommy Fleetwood is the defending champion.

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    Pre-tourney caution be damned: Stenson rides camel

    By Grill Room TeamJanuary 16, 2018, 3:29 pm

    If you were under the impression Henrik Stenson's days of engaging in pre-tournament hijinks at HSBC-sponsored events were over, then you don't know the Swedish Superman.

    Ahead of this week's HSBC Abu Dhabi Golf Championship, the 2016 champion golfer of the year decided to have some fun riding (and pretend-spanking) a camel:

    If you can't imagine any reason Stenson wouldn't get on a camel, we will point you to the WGC-HSBC Champions back in October, when Stenson, Dustin Johnson, Haotong Li and Hideki Matsuyama took place in this hire-wire act:

    Two weeks later, Stenson revealed a rib injury, and a report from the U.K.'s Telegraph stated "that not only was the Shanghai caper to blame, but that Stenson is annoyed about being persuaded to do it in the first place."

    Stenson brushed back at that report in this Instagram post, saying that his "comment about not being Superman was a sarcastic way of saying that I am susceptible to injury like any other athlete and sometimes these things happen when you least expect them. I was pleased to help promote the HSBC Champions and to continue my string of success at the event and I was never forced to do anything. HSBC is a great sponsor to golf worldwide and I am not happy to see them being made responsible for my withdrawal."

    I’m disappointed to have to pre-emptively withdraw from the Nedbank Golf Challenge Hosted by Gary Player, I was looking forward to this important year-end event on the European Tour. At this point I am back home in Orlando waiting to do a scan on my ribs and get the necessary rest. I am still hoping for a quick recovery and have not ruled out playing in Dubai next week at this point. My comment about not being Superman was a sarcastic way of saying that I am susceptible to injury like any other athlete and sometimes these things happen when you least expect them. I was pleased to help promote the HSBC Champions and to continue my string of success at the event and I was never forced to do anything. HSBC is a great sponsor to golf worldwide and I am not happy to see them being made responsible for my withdrawal. The plan as of now will be to participate in the DP World Championship if my body is back to 100%. H

    A post shared by Henrik Stenson (@henrikstenson) on

    And it would appear he genuinely meant those comments, at least enough to get on a camel.

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    Spieth, McIlroy to support Major Champions Invitational

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:25 pm

    Nick Faldo announced Tuesday the creation of the Major Champions Invitational.

    The event, scheduled for March 12-14, is an extension of the Faldo Series and will feature both male and female junior players at Bella Collina in Montverde, Fla.

    Jordan Spieth, Rory Mcllroy, Annika Sorenstam, Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson, Jerry Pate and John Daly have already committed to supporting the event, which is aimed at mentoring and inspiring the next generation of players.  

    “I’m incredibly excited about hosting the Major Champions Invitational, and about the players who have committed to support the event,” Faldo said. “This event will allow major champions to give something back to the game that has given them so much, and hopefully, in time, it will become one of the most elite junior golf events in the world.”

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    Rosaforte: Woods plays with Obama, gets rave reviews

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:15 pm

    Golf Channel insider Tim Rosaforte reports on Tiger Woods’ recent round at The Floridian in Palm City, Fla., alongside President Barack Obama.

    Check out the video, as Rosaforte says Woods received rave reviews from instructor Claude Harmon.