Tiger Trounces Cink in Match Play Final

By Associated PressFebruary 24, 2008, 5:00 pm
2007- WGC-AccentureTUCSON, Arizona -- Tiger Woods still rules the world of golf, perhaps now more than ever.
 
With a record-breaking victory Sunday in the Accenture Match Play Championship, Woods won his fifth straight tournament and captured his 15th World Golf Championship, holding all three world titles for the first time.
 
Golf is not a fair fight at the moment.
 
Stewart Cink found that out at Dove Mountain, where Woods overwhelmed him with 14 birdies in 29 holes for an 8-and-7 victory, the largest margin in the final in the 10-year history of this tournament.
 
I think maybe we ought to slice him open to see whats inside, Cink said. Maybe nuts and bolts.
 
Cink was only the latest victim in a winning streak that dates to the first week of September.
 
Woods has won four straight times on the PGA TOUR, the third time he has built a streak at least that long. He has set the tournament record for margin of victory in his last three wins.
 
And it was his fifth straight victory worldwide, including his stunning comeback in Dubai three weeks ago.
 
I think this is the best stretch Ive ever played, Woods said.
 
The worlds No. 1 player began this season talking about the Grand Slam.
 
The first stop was a Triple Crown of the WGCs, completing a sweep that included an 8-shot victory in the Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone and a two-shot victory in the CA Championship at Doral.
 
Woods tour winning streak was at seven last year when Nick OHern beat him in the third round of the Match Play. Given the fickle nature of this format, even Woods said it was the toughest tournament to win this side of a major.
 
Turns out the hard part was just getting to the final match.
 
Woods rallied from three down with five holes to play in the opening round against J.B. Holmes by winning four straight holes with three birdies and a 35-foot eagle. He twice watched Aaron Baddeley putt from inside 12 feet to win a third-round match, beating the Australian in 20 holes. And he was stretched to 18 holes in the semifinals against defending champion Henrik Stenson.
 
But the final was no contest.
 
He built a 4-up lead after the morning round, and Cink never got any closer.
 
Cink didnt win a hole until No. 12, and the only hole he won in the afternoon came at the par-5 10th when he rolled in a 36-foot eagle putt. Woods had an eagle putt from 35 feet, and the ball spun around the cup.
 
Even the minuscule amount that I upstaged him there'him being 8 up'I still thought he was going to make it, Cink said. He lipped it out, and I thought, Hey, come on. At least give me a moment to shine here. And he said, Sorry, dude.
 
Woods has won 63 times on the PGA TOUR, moving past Arnold Palmer into fourth place on the career list, one victory behind Ben Hogan, and each year getting closer to the record 82 tournaments won by Sam Snead.
 
I cant wait to see Arnie, Woods said, grinning. Just to be mentioned in the same breath as Arnold Palmer and Ben Hogan, you know youve had a pretty good career.
 
Its been a great career in the World Golf Championships alone.
 
This is the 10th year of this series, which was designed to bring together the best players in the world.
 
Identifying the best? That was never a serious question.
 
Woods is a staggering 15-of-26 in official WGC events, three of those in the Match Play Championship. Darren Clarke (Match Play, Bridgestone) is the only other player with multiple WGC victories.
 
The worlds No. 1 player has built a career on these events alone:
 
' Woods earned $1.35 million Sunday, giving him over $19.8 million in these elite events. Thats roughly 25 percent of Woods career PGA TOUR earnings, and more than Tom Lehman has earned in more than 430 tour starts.
 
' He was won 15 times in WGC events, as many victories as Fred Couples has in his entire PGA TOUR career.
 
It says about the same thing that just about any other stat you can pull up of him says, Cink said. It says hes the best thats ever played.
 
Stenson won the first four holes and defeated Justin Leonard in the consolation match, 3 and 2. Leonard should earn enough world ranking points to move into the top 40, boosting his chances of getting into the Masters.
 
Cink earned $800,000 and will look back on a week in which he beat British Open champion Padraig Harrington and U.S. Open champion Angel Cabrera before running out of magic against the reigning PGA champion.
 
Im a little disappointed I didnt throw a little more at Tiger, put some pressure on him, Cink said.
 
Woods already was 4 up after eight holes in the morning when he mentioned that a rules official had just warned them that they were close to being put on the clock for slow play.
 
Who are we holding up? Woods whispered with a bemused grin, noting they were the only match on the course.
 
Truth is, he might as well have been playing alone.
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship
  • Brackets - WGC-Match Play Championship
  • Getty Images

    Johnson, Moore co-lead Valero Texas Open through 36

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 11:32 pm

    SAN ANTONIO - Zach Johnson was going nowhere in the Valero Texas Open when it all changed with one putt.

    He made an 8-foot par putt on the 13th hole of the opening round to stay at 2 under. He followed with a big drive, a hybrid into 12 feet and an eagle. Johnson was on his way, and he kept right on going Friday to a 7-under 65 and a share of the early 36-hole lead with Ryan Moore.

    ''You just never know. That's the beauty of this game,'' Johnson said. ''I felt like I was hitting some solid shots and wasn't getting rewarded, and you've just got to stay in it. You've got to persevere, grind it out, fight for pars. You just never know.''

    Moore had three birdies over his last five holes for a 67 and joined Johnson at 9-under 135.

    Ben Crane (66), Martin Laird (65) and David Hearn (68) were three shots out of the lead among those who played Friday morning. Billy Horschel and Keegan Bradley shot 71 and were four shots behind at 5-under 139.

    Sergio Garcia, who consulted Greg Norman on the design of the AT&T Oaks Course at the TPC San Antonio, might have a long stay in his first time at the Texas Open since 2010. Garcia shot an even-par 72, and at one point became so frustrated he threw his driver into the shrubs.


    Full-field scores from the Valero Texas Open

    Valero Texas Open: Articles, photos and videos


    Garcia finished at 2-over 146 and was outside the cut. He was in jeopardy of missing his second straight cut, depending on afternoon scoring.

    Johnson, a two-time winner of the Texas Open, appeared to be headed to a short week until the key par save on the 13th hole, followed by his eagle, par and three straight birdies. He began the second round Friday with five birdies in a six-hole stretch on the back nine, a sixth birdie on the par-4 first hole, and then an eagle on the short par-4 fifth when he holed out from a greenside bunker.

    The only sour taste to his second round was a three-putt bogey from about 30 feet on his final hole. Even so, the view was much better than it was Thursday afternoon.

    Moore thought he had wasted a good birdie opportunity on the par-5 14th hole when he left his 50-foot eagle putt about 6 feet short. But he made that, and then holed a similar putt from 8 feet for birdie on the next hole and capped his good finish with a 15-foot putt on the 17th.

    ''That was a huge momentum putt there,'' Moore said of the 14th. ''It was a tough putt from down there with a lot of wind. That green is pretty exposed and ... yeah, really short and committed to that second putt really well and knocked it right in the middle.''

    The birdies on the 14th and 15th were important to Moore because he missed a pair of 10-foot birdie tries to start the back nine.

    ''So it was nice to get those and get going in the right direction on the back,'' he said.

    Getty Images

    Daly-Allen team grabs Legends of Golf lead on Day 2

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 11:14 pm

    RIDGEDALE, Mo. - John Daly and Michael Allen took the second-round lead Friday in the cool and breezy Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf.

    Daly and Allen shot an 8-under 46 on the Top of the Rock par-3 course with wind gusting to 15 mph and the temperature only in the high-50s at Big Cedar Lodge. They had three birdies on the front nine in alternate-shot play and added five more on the back in better-ball play to get to 13 under.

    ''Michael and I go back to the South African days in the late 80s and playing that tour,'' Daly said. ''We've been buddies since. He's just fun to play with. We feed off each other pretty good. And if he's not comfortable guinea-pigging on one hole, I'll go first.''

    On Thursday, they opened with a 66 on the regulation Buffalo Ridge course. They will rotate to the 13-hole Mountain Top par-3 course on Saturday, and return to Top of the Rock for the final round Sunday.

    ''I went to high school in Jeff City, so it's cool to have the fans behind us,'' Daly said.

    Allen won the PGA Tour Champions team event with David Frost in 2012 and Woody Austin in 2016.

    ''I'm just here to free up John,'' Allen said. ''It was fun. Luckily, I started making good putts today. We just want to keep the good times rolling.''


    Full-field scores from the Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf


    Defending champions Vijay Singh and Carlos Franco were a stroke back along with Bernhard Langer-Tom Lehman and Paul Broadhurst-Kirk Triplett. Singh and Franco had a 7-under 32 in best-ball play at Mountain Top, and Lehman-Langer and Broadhurst-Tripplet each shot 6-under 48 at Top of the Rock.

    ''Part of the issue here is all the tees are elevated, so you're up high hitting to a green that's down below and the wind is blowing, and there is more time for that wind to affect it,'' Lehman said. ''If you guess wrong on the wind, you can hit a really good shot and kind of look stupid.''

    Former UCLA teammates Scott McCarron and Brandt Jobe were two strokes back at 11 under with Steve Flesch and David Toms and the Spanish side of Jose Maria Olazabal and Miguel Angel Jimenez. McCarron-Jobe had a 47, and Jimenez-Olazabal a 48 at Top of the Rock, and Tom Flesch shot 34 at Mountain Top.

    First-round leaders Jeff Maggert and Jesper Parnevik had a 52 at Top of the Rock to fall three shots back at 10 under. Madison, Wisconsin, friends Steve Stricker and Jerry Kelly also were 10 under after a 32 at Mountain Top. Jay Haas aced the 131-yard seventh hole at Mountain Top with a gap wedge. Haas and fellow 64-year-old Peter Jacobsen were 8 under after a 32.

    Getty Images

    Football coach hates golf: Don't need practice swearing

    By Jason CrookApril 20, 2018, 10:15 pm

    Some football coaches are a little more talkative than others. On one side of the spectrum, there's Bill Belichick. On the other sits Washington State football coach Mike Leach.

    Leach always delivers the goods, and when asked recently if he liked golf, he didn't hold back:

    As wrong as the 57-year-old is on the topic (golf is awesome), the man makes some hilarious points:

    • “It’s boring. I don’t care where that ball goes.”

    • "Golfers are always practicing their swing. But you know what I never did? I never practice fishing in my living room.”

    • "They'll line up over the ball and they'll say they're going to do something that you can't do with a sniper rifle and a scope, but they're going to do it with a stick and a ball."

    • “Golf’s pretty much for people that don’t swear effectively enough or need practice. And so there are people that need golf, and I don’t think I do.”

    So in conclusion, it's confirmed: Mike Leach - not a golf guy.

    Getty Images

    Quiros takes 1-shot lead in Morocco

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 8:22 pm

    RABAT, Morocco - Alvaro Quiros shot a solid 2-under 70 in windy conditions to push into a one-shot lead after two rounds of the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco on Friday.

    Quiros fought the elements, carding seven birdies and five bogeys to move to 7 under overall and take the outright lead at the halfway point of the European Tour event.

    The Spaniard was one clear of Andrew Dodt, who moved into contention with a 4-under 68 at the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam course. Dodt dropped two shots in his first six holes but the Australian recovered from that shaky start to collect four birdies and an eagle.


    Full-field scores from the Trophee Hassan II


    Erik van Rooyen of South Africa was another shot back in third on 5 under after his 71.

    Bradley Dredge of Wales, who shared the first-round lead with Quiros, slipped off the pace with a 1-over 73. He's tied for fourth with Austin Connelly of Canada (71), 4 under par and three shots behind Quiros.