Perry has nothing against the British Open

By Associated PressJuly 14, 2009, 4:00 pm
135th Open Championship TURNBERRY, Scotland ' Kenny Perry wants to make one thing clear: Hes got nothing against the British Open.
The 48-year-old American is back at golfs oldest major championship after skipping it last year, a scheduling decision he made early on because he felt it gave him the best chance to play for the U.S. Ryder Cup team in his native Kentucky.
While everything went according to plan ' Perry made the team and helped the Americans rout the Europeans at Valhalla ' his decision to skip the Open sparked plenty of debate.
Kenny Perry hits an approach shot during a practice round Tuesday at Turnberry. (Getty Images)
I think people just didnt understand, Perry said Tuesday after a practice round at Turnberry. If the Ryder Cup would have been somewhere else, I would probably have come over here. But being in my home state, it really kind of changed my focus and desire, what I wanted at that point in time in my life.
I figure, here I am 48 years old, that was my last opportunity probably to play in a Ryder Cup, plus being in my home state in front of my home folks, it was just a big opportunity to me. And thats the reason why I didnt come over here last year.
Perry has never felt especially comfortable playing links golf, but changes in technology have made it easier for him to adapt. Hes finished among the top 16 three times ' including a tie for eighth at Royal St. Georges in 2003 ' in five Open appearances.
But his main focus last year was qualifying for the Ryder Cup team. Its hard to argue with the results: three wins and more than $4.6 million in earnings, his best year ever on the PGA Tour. Most important, he got to celebrate at Valhalla, where he had squandered a lead on the 72nd hole of the 1996 PGA Championship and wound up losing to Mark Brooks in a playoff.
The people in Kentucky and my home state, thats what they remembered me for, Perry said. And my goal was to get back there and be an effective player to where my home thought of me differently as a player. It worked perfectly, my plan of winning three times, went to the Ryder Cup, played great. And now they dont even think about Valhalla, the PGA Championship anymore. They always think about the Ryder Cup.
Perry carried his strong play into 2009, contending again for his first major title at the Masters. He led by two strokes with two holes to play, only to bogey them both and fall into a three-way playoff. He lost to Angel Cabrera on the second extra hole.
Afterward, he talked candidly of choking away his chance to become golfs oldest major champion. Now, hes a little easier on himself.
It gave me a lot more confidence, Perry said. I went in there with a game plan. I just took a different strategy to Augusta. I went in there early, a week before early, played a lot of golf there. I really charted the golf course well, kind of figured out how I wanted to play the strength of my game to play that golf, kind of set up that golf course, and I played it to perfection.
Until the end.
I got too big a lead too fast there at the very end, Perry said. Instead of playing aggressive like Id been playing all week, I got kind of conservative on the last two holes and it cost me. It was a good lesson.
Perry bounced back to win the Travelers Championship three weeks ago ' his 13th win in a career that didnt take off until he was in his 40s. Hell turn 49 next month, and hes fourth in the world rankings.
Not too many can say theyre 49 and fourth in the world, Perry said. Its pretty neat. Its just taken me a long time to get there. I wish I was in my mid-20s now and was fourth in the world, because my mentality, Ive changed so much in 20 years out there.
Its just taken me a long time to figure it out, to be comfortable, relaxed, enjoy the people and the crowds and the traveling. Its just taken me a long time to get to where I really enjoy the game again. To me, it was a job in the 90s and early 2000s. Now, its become fun. Ive enjoyed it.
Hes looking forward to playing his first British Open since 2006, even though a howling rain swept over the course during the last few holes of Tuesdays practice round.
I tell everybody its like playing on the moon, because its so different to me, Perry said. But I always enjoy coming over. The fans are great. I have a good time with it. And my game has gotten better. If I can figure out a way to get in contention on Sunday, if I played well and could get in contention, yeah, I dont think Ill back down. I think Ill be ready to go.
He played his practice round with a foursome that included 24-year-old Anthony Kim, whos just a few months older than Perrys son ' and caddie ' Justin.
Hes a hoot. Hes such a kid, Perry said of Kim. I was just aggravating him the whole day out there. I kind of take the young kids and aggravate them. But its a lot of fun to me just to hang out with them.
And still show them a thing or two.
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    Four top finishers in Japan qualify for The Open

    By Associated PressMay 27, 2018, 10:19 am

    IBARAKI, Japan – Shota Akiyoshi of Japan shot a 2-under-par 70 on Sunday to win the Mizuno Open and qualify for The 147th Open.

    Akiyoshi offset three bogeys with five birdies at the Royal Golf Club in Ibaraki, Japan, to finish 1 under overall and secure his first ever tournament win on the Japan Golf Tour.

    Michael Hendry of New Zealand and Japanese golfers Masahiro Kawamura and Masanori Kobayashi were tied for second one stroke off the pace to also qualify for The Open at Carnoustie, Scotland, from July 19-22.

    Hendry, who led the tournament coming into the final round, came close to forcing a playoff with Akiyoshi but dropped a shot with a bogey on the final hole when he needed a par to draw level.

    Hendry will make his second appearance at The Open after qualifying at the Mizuno Open for the second year in a row.

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    Lewis hopes to win at Volvik with baby on the way

    By Randall MellMay 27, 2018, 12:55 am

    Stacy Lewis was listening to more than her caddie on her march up the leaderboard Saturday at the Volvik Championship.

    Pregnant with her first child, she is listening to her body in a new way these days.

    And she could hear a message coming through loud and clear toward the end of her round at Travis Point Country Club in Ann Arbor, Mich.

    “The little one was telling me it’s dinnertime,” Lewis said.

    Lewis birdied five of the last six holes to shoot 5-under-par 67 and move into position to make a Sunday run at winning her 13th LPGA title. She is two shots behind the leader, Minjee Lee, whose 68 moved her to 12 under overall.

    Sunday has the makings of a free for all with 10 players within three shots of the lead.

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    Lewis, 33, is four months pregnant, with her due date Nov. 3. She’s expecting to play just a few more times before putting the clubs away to get ready for the birth. She said she’s likely to make the Marathon Classic in mid-July her last start of the season before returning next year.

    Of course, Lewis would relish winning with child.

    “I don’t care what limitations I have or what is going on with my body, I want to give myself a chance to win,” she told at the Kingsmill Championship last week.

    Lewis claimed an emotional victory with her last title, taking the Cambia Portland Classic late last summer after announcing earlier in the week that she would donate her entire winnings to the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in her Houston hometown.

    A victory Sunday would also come with a lot of emotion.

    It’s been an interesting year for Lewis.

    There’s been the joy of learning she’s ready to begin the family she has been yearning for, and the struggle to play well after bouncing back from injury.

    Lewis missed three cuts in a row before making it into the weekend at the Kingsmill Championship last week. That’s one more cut than she missed cumulatively in the previous six years. In six starts this year, Lewis hasn’t finished among the top 50 yet, but she hasn’t felt right, either.

    The former world No. 1 didn’t make her second start of 2018 until April, at the year’s first major, the ANA Inspiration. She withdrew from the HSBC Women’s World Championship in late February with a strained right oblique muscle and didn’t play again for a month.

    Still, Lewis is finding plenty to get excited about with the baby on the way.

    “I kind of had my first Mother’s Day,” Lewis told last week. “It puts golf into perspective. It makes those bad days not seem so bad. It helps me sleep better at night. We are just really excited.”

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    Rose hasn't visited restroom at Colonial - here's why

    By Nick MentaMay 27, 2018, 12:20 am

    In case you're unaware, it's pretty hot in Texas.

    Temperatures at Colonial Country Club have approached 100 degrees this week, leaving players to battle both the golf course and potential dehydration.

    With the help of his caddie Mark Fulcher, Fort Worth Invitational leader Justin Rose has been plenty hot himself, staking himself to a four-shot lead.

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    "Yeah, Fulch has done a great job of just literally handing me water bottle after water bottle. It seems relentless, to be honest with you," Rose said Saturday.

    So just how much are players sweating the heat at Colonial? Well, it doesn't sound like all that water is making it all the way through Rose.

    "I haven't even seen the inside of a restroom yet, so you can't even drink quick enough out there," he shared.

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    Up four, Rose knows a lead can slip away

    By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 11:21 pm

    Up four shots heading into Sunday at the Fort Worth Invitational, Justin Rose has tied the largest 54-hole lead of his PGA Tour career.

    On the previous two occasions he took a 54-hole Tour lead into the final round, he closed.

    And yet, Rose knows just how quickly a lead can slip away. After all, it was Rose who erased a six-shot deficit earlier this season to overtake Dustin Johnson and win the WGC-HSBC Championship. 

    "I think I was in the lead going into the final round in Turkey when I won, and I had a four-shot lead going into the final round in Indonesia in December and managed to put that one away," Rose said Saturday, thinking back to his two other victories late last year.

    "I was five, six back maybe of DJ, so I've got experience the other way. ... So you can see how things can go both ways real quick. That's why there is no point in getting too far ahead of myself."

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    Up one to start the third round Saturday, Rose extended his lead to as much as five when he birdied four of his first six holes.

    He leads the field in strokes gained: tee-to-green (+12.853) and strokes gained: approach-the-green (+7.931).

    Rose has won five times worldwide, including at the 2016 Rio Olympics, since his last victory in the United States, at the 2015 Zurich Classic.

    With a win Sunday, he'd tie Nick Faldo for the most PGA Tour wins by an Englishman post-World War II, with nine.

    But he isn't celebrating just yet.

    "It is a big lead, but it's not big enough to be counting the holes away. You've got to go out and play good, you've got to go out positive, you've got to continue to make birdies and keep going forward.

    "So my mindset is to not really focus on the lead, it's to focus on my game tomorrow and my performance. You know, just keep executing the way I have been. That's going to be my challenge tomorrow. Going to look forward to that mindset."