Baker-Finch to Reprise Role as Asst Captain

By Associated PressAugust 8, 2007, 4:00 pm
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. - International Presidents Cup Team Captain Gary Player has announced that Ian Baker-Finch will return as his assistant for the 2007 Presidents Cup, to be held Sept. 25-30 at The Royal Montreal Golf Club in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
 
Baker-Finch previously served as captains assistant to Player at both the 2003 and 2005 Presidents Cups, and he was Peter Thomsons captains assistant at the 1996 Presidents Cup.
 
Having been Players right-hand man since the beginning of The Presidents Cups captained by Player and U.S. Team Captain Jack Nicklaus, Baker-Finch was the natural choice for captains assistant of the International Team.
 
I am delighted that Ian has agreed to be my captains assistant again, said Player from his home in South Africa. He has been a great team man in the past, and his thorough knowledge of the players on the PGA TOUR makes him the ideal man to assist me in leading our team.'
 
The winner of the 1991 British Open Championship, Baker-Finch was a respected international player who captured 15 titles worldwide, including victories in Australia, Europe, Japan and the United States. Baker-Finchs first PGA TOUR victory came at the 1989 Southwestern Bell Colonial.
 
Since retiring from competitive golf in 1997, Baker-Finch has worked as a television golf commentator for ESPN and ABC before joining the CBS Sports golf team in 2007 as analyst for all the networks PGA TOUR events. Baker-Finch and his family reside in North Palm Beach, Fla, and he is involved with his course design business and hosts numerous charity and corporate golf days throughout the United States.
 
I am once again very honored to have been asked by Gary to assist him, and I can assure him of my full support as always, said Baker-Finch, who now owns the distinction of serving as captains assistant more times than anyone in The Presidents Cup history. It looks like we are going to have a very strong team, and it would be great to come away with a win after being so close on the last two occasions.
 
The International Presidents Cup Team will be named Aug. 12, following the PGA Championship. The top-10 international players (excluding those eligible for the European Ryder Cup Team) from the Official World Golf Ranking after the conclusion of the PGA Championship automatically make the International Team. On Monday, Aug. 13, Player and Nicklaus will round out their 12-person teams by each making two captains selections. Nicklaus and Player will make the announcement via teleconference.
 
The top-20 in 2007 International Team eligibility are 1. Ernie Els, 2. Adam Scott, 3. Vijay Singh, 4. Geoff Ogilvy, 5. Rory Sabbatini, 6. K.J. Choi, 7. Retief Goosen, 8. Angel Cabrera, 9. Trevor Immelman, 10. Andres Romero, 11. Nick OHern, 12. Stuart Appleby, 13. Aaron Baddeley, 14. Richard Green, 15. Robert Allenby, 16. Richard Sterne, 17. Tim Clark, 18. Rod Pampling, 19. Stephen Ames, 20. Mike Weir.
 
Nicklaus named Jeff Sluman as his captains assistant last month.
 
The Presidents Cup, a team match play competition featuring 24 of the worlds top golfers ' 12 from the United States and 12 from around the world, excluding Europe ' is held every two years, and since 1996 has alternated between United States and international venues. The Presidents Cup was developed to give the worlds best non-European players an opportunity to compete in international team match-play competition. The U.S. Team has won four of the six previous Presidents Cups, and the only outright win by the International Team came at the 1998 event in Melbourne. The 2003 Presidents Cup ended in a tie.
 
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.