Notes Scott Longer Than Lefty as a Lefty

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Tiger Woods holed a birdie putt from 50 feet across the 12th green at Cog Hill. He twice nearly lost in the early rounds of Match Play, making 90 feet of putts against J.B. Holmes, and getting a second chance when Aaron Baddeley missed a 12-foot eagle putt on the 19th hole.
 
And dont forget Bay Hill, where Woods made a 25-foot putt on the final hole that his caddie said had a 1-in-15 chance of going in.
 
Even greatness in golf requires good fortune, and Woods had plenty during his latest winning streak.
 
That ran out at Doral, and so did a streak that began in September. Woods didnt make anything on Saturday, when he fell five shots behind Geoff Ogilvy, and he didnt make enough on Sunday and Monday, finishing two shots behind.
 
People dont really understand you need to have something happen, a positive thing happen to you out there in order to win tournaments, Woods said. I heard Geoff bladed one in the hole for par. Thats what you need to have happen. Those are the things that have happened to me, and things werent going that way this week.
 
Even with the streak over, it is no less amazing how much Woods wins relative to his peers.
 
Among active players, Woods, Vijay Singh and David Duval are the only ones to have strung together at least three straight victories.
 
Duval closed out his 1997 season with three straight wins. Singh won three straight during his nine-win season in 2004. Woods has done it five times'two streaks ended at three wins, one at five, one at six, one at seven.
 
It was going to end at some point, Ogilvy said after stopping the latest PGA TOUR streak at five.
 
Ogilvys only frustration was players being labeled as failures at the expense of Woods winning so much.
 
Its fun to watch the streak and its fun to watch the fans get so excited about stuff, Ogilvy said. The frustrating thing is that people think that were not trying and were flying the white flag. I dont think thats true in any case, really.
 

TRIVIA TIME:
There have been seven winning streaks of at least three PGA TOUR events since 1997. Name the only player who has ended those streaks more than once. Answer below.
 

SWITCH-HITTING SCOTT:
Adam Scott impressed many observers by playing a shot left-handed out of the bushes at Doral on the 17th hole of the second round. He isnt the only player to attempt a shot from the other side, but this was a full swing, and a beautiful one. Scott took the inverted club all the way back to parallel, and advanced it some 50 yards.
 
Apparently, hes quite good with a driver, too.
 
Swing coach Butch Harmon tells the story of Scott playing a practice round with Phil Mickelson at East Lake, asking to try Leftys driver on the 14th. He striped it, leaving him only 20 or so yards behind Mickelson.
 
Harmon was out in the fairway, and kicked Scotts ball forward so that it was nearly 10 yards ahead of Mickelson.
 
Suffice to say, Mickelson was surprised that Scott put it past him.
 
Even better, Harmon waited about four months before he told Mickelson what had happened. No doubt, Lefty was relieved.
 

CUTTING BACK:
Jim Furyk already has played eight times, and he now embarks on the busiest time of his year. Furyk said he will have no more than one week off at a time through the end of the TOUR Championship the last weekend in September, which has made him determined to cut back.
 
But where?
 
The issue we have now is theres a lot of good events, and when theyre crammed together, Ive really struggled making my schedule, Furyk said. It used to be easy. All those events in the fall, I only played one on the schedule (Las Vegas). Those other events were sprinkled in, and those were my weeks off. From now, I dont have a two-week break in the schedule unless I get hurt.
 
He is playing New Orleans because he does not want a two-week break before the Masters. His favorite tracks are Hilton Head, Colonial, Memorial and the Buick Open, and there are cant-miss events like Wachovia, The Players Championship and AT&T National.
 
The British Open is the first of four straight weeks because he is the defending champion at the Canadian Open.
 
Ive got to cut somewhere, but I dont know where, Furyk said. Im playing a lot at events that I think are OK for my game, but Im trying to not be worn out for the events I really love in summer. Next year, Ill do a better job. It should have taken me six months to figure it out, and its taken my two years.
 

CANADIAN SKINS:
Fred Couples and Greg Norman will square off long before the Presidents Cup next year. Both have agreed to play June 16-17 in the Telus World Skins Game, to be held at Predator Ridge Golf Resort in western Canada.
 
Theyve always had tremendous fields for this event, and Im looking forward to going up against the other players, including Greg, Couples said. The event will be held the Monday and Tuesday after the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines.
 
Couples has played the Canadian skins event eight times and earned $1.11 million, more than anyone. Norman won in 1997 by capturing 13 skins worth $275,000.
 
Other players are still to be announced, although defending champion John Daly will not be playing.
 

TRIVIA ANSWER:
Phil Mickelson.
 
He ended Woods six-tournament streak in 2000 at the Buick Invitational, and Duvals three-tournament streak at the Mercedes Championships in 1998 when it was played at La Costa.
 
The other players who won tournaments to end Woods winning streaks were Duffy Waldorf (00 Disney), Robert Damron (01 Byron Nelson), Henrik Stenson (07 Match Play) and Geoff Ogilvy at Doral.
 
Ryan Palmer ended Singhs streak in 2004 when he won at Disney.
 

STAT OF THE WEEK:
Tiger Woods has nine consecutive top-five finishes on the PGA TOUR, the longest streak of his career.
 

FINAL WORD:
Some people walk away thinking, Geez, that course must be great because the pros cant make any birdies on it. Other people walk away saying, Well, that course must be boring to play because the pros cant make any birdies on it. Everyone seems to be pretty split on the idea whether hard is good.'Geoff Ogilvy.
 
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