Donald Mistakenly Entered Casey Contoversy

By Associated PressNovember 23, 2004, 5:00 pm
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Hardly anyone noticed Luke Donald sitting on a sofa Tuesday morning in the stately lobby at Sea Island Golf Club, where he faced a daylong photo shoot with a corporate sponsor.
 
Considering the mess he got drawn into last week in Spain, that was fine by him.
 
Im hoping that people will see through this, Donald said. I hope people will know me for who I am the last three years, not someone who is outspoken like that. Im not one for the limelight.
 
Donald didnt make headlines at the World Cup; he just tried to explain them.
 
The source was English teammate Paul Casey, who said in an interview with The Sunday Times that he learned to properly hate the Americans during the Ryder Cup. He went on to say that U.S. fans can be bloody annoying and that the vast majority of Americans dont know whats going on.
 
By the time tabloid editors got hold of the story, one headline in The Mirror quoted Casey as saying, Stupid Americans. I hate them.
 
Casey faced the British press on the eve of the World Cup with Donald at his side, two players whose personalities are polar opposites'Casey is brash and shoots from the lip, Donald is quiet and cautious.
 
Indeed, Donald has been a model of modesty since he came to the United States seven years ago and quietly assembled solid credentials. He won the NCAA title as a sophomore at Northwestern, made it through all three stages of Q-school on his first try and finished off his rookie season on the PGA Tour with a victory.
 
Where he really shines is in team competition.
 
Donald twice played on winning Walker Cup teams for Great Britain & Ireland and posted a 7-1 record. He was 2-1-1 in his Ryder Cup debut at Oakland Hills, where he and Sergio Garcia were a formidable team in alternate shot. And last week in Seville, he and Casey gave England the World Cup title for only the second time since it began in 1953.
 
In the press tent, however, Donald might have been too much of a team player.
 
Going into that press room Wednesday morning, I had little idea what was about to happen'no idea, really, Donald said. I literally heard a few minutes before that there was a controversy over something in the Mirror. I didnt know what it was about.
 
He found out during the news conference, as Casey tried to explain his remarks and dug himself a deeper hole. Casey also went off on the next U.S. Ryder Cup captain, suggesting Tom Lehman did not embody the spirit of sportsmanship that is supposed to define the matches.
 
Before long, the questions came to Donald.
 
Luke, youre sitting there very quietly, one reporter said.
 
Lets have your take.
 
Donald could have held up his hands, begged ignorance and let his teammate fend for himself. Instead, he tried to answer the questions.
 
I felt Paul was being hounded by the press, Donald said. Being his teammate and partner for the week, I wanted to defend him and try to have some kind of explanation to why he would say those things.
 
Big mistake.
 
Donald said Americans tended to be insular, that they could gain a lot by exploring the world'peculiar comments from an Englishman who has played only the PGA Tour and makes his home in Chicago.
 
Asked if he agreed with Caseys comments about Lehman, Donald repeated stories that have been making the rounds in Europe the last five years'that Lehman was an instigator in the premature celebration at Brookline and one of the first players to storm across the 17th green when Justin Leonard made the winning putt. None of the photos show Lehman leading the charge.
 
Ive never had anything but positive experiences with Tom, Donald said. Hes a gentleman on the course. The first question I was asked was, Luke, can you comment on the bad things Paul has been saying?
 
Id like to take that back. It wasnt my place to comment.
 
What set off Casey, then Donald, was an innocent comment by 28-year-old rookie Ryan Palmer when he won at Disney last month for his first PGA Tour victory.
 
Donald was watching the telecast when Palmer, who closed with a 62, said he was confident he could win because he had won the previous year on the Nationwide Tour, which is one of the best tours in the world next to the PGA Tour.
 
I dont think it was his place to say that because he hasnt played in Europe, Donald said. Instances like that are irritating to me and other Europeans that played on a victorious Ryder Cup team, and played so well. To hear that deflates us a little.
 
Yes, Americans can be insular and they dont always grasp the dry British humor.
 
And Europeans still have a chip on their shoulders.
 
The only one who relishes this nitpicking is the PGA of America, because it keeps the Ryder Cup part of golf conversations even though the next one is still 22 months away.
 
Meantime, Casey is rightfully concerned about what kind of reception hell get on the PGA Tour next year.
 
Donald can only hope that his blind support of a teammate doesnt spoil the goodwill he has built in his adopted home.
 
Chicago was his first stop when Donald came to the United States, and he hasnt left.
 
Hell be the first to say its not all bad.
 
Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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Lincicome grouped with two rookies in Barbasol

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 17, 2018, 9:54 pm

Brittany Lincicome will tee it up with a pair of rookies when she makes her first start in a PGA Tour event Thursday at the Barbasol Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky.

Lincicome, an eight-time LPGA winner, is scheduled to go off the 10th tee at 9:59 a.m. ET in the first round with Sam Ryder, 28, and Conrad Shindler, 29. They’re off the first tee Friday at 2:59 p.m. ET

Lincicome will become just the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event, joining Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie.

“The first three or four holes, I’ll be a nervous wreck, for sure,” Linicome said.

 

 

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Lincicome thrilled by reception from male pros

By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 8:31 pm

Brittany Lincicome wondered how PGA Tour pros would greet her when she arrived to play the Barbasol Championship this week.

She wondered if there would be resentment.

She also wondered how fans at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., would receive her, and if a social media mob would take up pitchforks.

“I can’t stop smiling,” Lincicome said Tuesday after her first practice round upon arriving. “Everyone has been coming up to me and wishing me luck. That means a lot.”

PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, husband of LPGA pro Gerina Piller, welcomed her immediately.

Other pros sought her out on the practice putting green.

She said she was also welcomed joining pros at a table in player dining.

Fans have been stopping her for autographs.

“It has been an awesome reception,” said Dewald Gouws, her husband, a former long-drive competitor. “I think it’s put her much more at ease, seeing the reception she is getting. There’s a lot of mutual respect.”

Lincicome, 32, wasn’t sure if she would be playing a practice round alone Tuesday morning, but when she made her way to the first tee, Domenico Geminiani was there, just about to go off.

He waved Lincicome over.

“He said, `Hey, Brittany, do you want to join me?’” Gouws said. “Come to find out, Dom’s a pretty cool guy.”

Geminiani made it into the field as a Monday qualifier.

“The two of us were both trying to figure things out together,” Lincicome said.

Keene Trace will play to 7,328 yards on the scorecard. That’s more than 800 yards longer than Highland Meadows, where Lincicome finished second at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic last weekend. Keene Trace was playing even longer than its listed yardage Tuesday, with recent rains softening it.

Nicknamed “Bam Bam,” Lincicome is one of the longest hitters in the women’s game. Her 269.5 yard average drive is 10th in the LPGA ranks. It would likely be dead last on the PGA Tour, where Brian Stuard (278.2) is the last player on the stats list at No. 201.

“I think if I keep it in the fairway, I’ll be all right,” Lincicome said.

Lincicome is an eight-time LPGA winner, with two major championships among those titles. She is just the sixth woman to compete in a PGA Tour event, the first in a decade, since Michelle Wie played the Reno-Tahoe Open, the last of her eight starts against the men.

Lincicome will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Wie in the elite ranks.

Zaharias, by the way, is the only woman to make a 36-hole cut in PGA Tour history, making it at the 1945 L.A. Open before missing a 54-hole cut on the weekend.

What are Lincicome’s expectations?

She would love to make the cut, but . . .

“Just going to roll with it and see what happens,” she said. “This is once in a lifetime, probably a one-and-done opportunity. I’m just going to enjoy it.”

Lincicome grew up playing for the boys’ golf team at Seminole High on the west coast of Florida. She won a couple city championships.

“I always thought it would be cool to compete against the guys on the PGA Tour,” Lincicome said. “I tend to play more with the guys than women at home. I never would have gone out and told my agent, `Let’s go try to play in a PGA Tour event,’ but when Tom Murray called with this opportunity, I was really blown away and excited by it. I never in a million years thought I would have this opportunity.”

Tom Murray, the president of Perio, the parent company of Barbasol and Pure Silk, invited Lincicome to accept one of the tournament’s sponsor exemptions. Lincicome represents Pure Silk.

Lincicome said her desire to play a PGA Tour event is all about satisfying her curiosity, wanting to know how she would stack up at this level. She also wants to see if the experience can help take her to the next level in the women’s game.

As a girl growing up, she played Little League with the boys, instead of softball with the girls. She said playing the boys in golf at Seminole High helped her get where she is today.

“The guys were better, and it pushed me to want to be better,” Lincicome said. “I think playing with the guys [on the PGA Tour], I will learn something to take to LPGA events, and it will help my game, for sure.”

Lincicome has been pleased that her fellow LPGA pros are so supportive. LPGA winner Kris Tamulis is flying into Kentucky as moral support. Other LPGA pros may also be coming in to support her.

The warm fan reception Lincicome is already getting at Keene Trace matters, too.

“She’s already picked up some new fans this week, and hopefully she will pick up some more,” Gouws said. “I don’t think she’s putting too much expectation on herself. I think she really does just want to have fun.”

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Stunner: Inbee Park steps aside for Int. Crown

By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 4:00 pm

There was a big surprise this week when the LPGA announced the finalized lineups for the UL International Crown.

Rolex world No. 1 Inbee Park won’t be teeing it up for the host South Koreans Oct. 4-7 in Incheon.

She has withdrawn, saying she wanted another Korean to be able to experience the thrill of representing her country.

It’s a stunner given the importance the LPGA has placed on taking the UL International Crown to South Korea and its golf-crazy allegiance to the women’s game in the Crown’s first staging outside the United States.

Two-time major champion In Gee Chun will replace Park.

"It was my pleasure and honor to participate in the first UL International Crown in 2014 and at the 2016 Olympics, and I cannot describe in one word how amazing the atmosphere was to compete as a representative of my country,” Park said. “There are so many gifted and talented players in Korea, and I thought it would be great if one of the other players was given the chance to experience the 2018 UL International Crown.”

Chun, another immensely popular player in South Korea, was the third alternate, so to speak, with the world rankings used to field teams. Hye Jin Choi and Jin Young Ko were higher ranked than Chun but passed because of commitments made to competing in a Korean LPGA major that week. The other South Koreans who previously qualified are So Yeon Ryu, Sung Hyun Park and I.K. Kim.

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Na: I can admit, 'I went through the yips'

By Rex HoggardJuly 17, 2018, 3:35 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Following his victory two weeks ago at A Military Tribute at the Greenbrier, Kevin Na said his second triumph on the PGA Tour was the most rewarding of his career.

Although he declined to go into details as to why the victory was so gratifying at The Greenbrier, as he completed his practice round on Tuesday at the Open Championship, Na shed some light on how difficult the last few years have been.

“I went through the yips. The whole world saw that. I told people, 'I can’t take the club back,'” Na said on Tuesday at Carnoustie. “People talked about it, 'He’s a slow player. Look at his routine.' I was admitting to the yips. I didn’t use the word ‘yip’ at the time. Nobody wants to use that word, but I’m over it now so I can use it. The whole world saw it.”


Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Na, who made headlines for his struggles to begin his backswing when he found himself in the lead at the 2012 Players Championship, said he asked other players who had gone through similar bouts with the game’s most dreaded ailment how they were able to get through it.

“It took time,” he said. “I forced myself a lot. I tried breathing. I tried a trigger. Some guys will have a forward press or the kick of the right knee. That was hard and the crap I got for it was not easy.”

The payoff, however, has steadily arrived this season. Na said he’d been confident with his game this season following a runner-up showing at the Genesis Open and a fourth-place finish at the Fort Worth Invitational, and he felt he was close to a breakthrough. But being able to finish a tournament like he did at The Greenbrier, where he won by five strokes, was particularly rewarding.

“All good now,” he smiled. “I knew I was good enough to win again, but until you do it sometimes you question yourself. It’s just the honest truth.”