Not your normal PGA

By Brian HewittAugust 7, 2008, 4:00 pm
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2008 US Open 81x90BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. ' It was an odd sort of Day 1 at Oakland Hills Thursday in what has been an odd sort of week in a lot of places.
 
Did you see about the made-for-YouTube 911 call by a guy in Jacksonville who thought it was an emergency because the people at the Subway sandwich shop didnt make his sandwich the way he wanted it?
 
Here in Greater Detroit (no, wise guys, that isnt an oxymoron) the Mayor of Motown ' a gent named Kwame Kilpatrick ' was jailed Thursday for jumping bail. ... Its a long story.
 
Meanwhile out at the PGA Championship there were all sorts of anomalies and assorted oddments that had nothing to do with Brett Favre becoming a New York Jet.
 
For much of the afternoon there was a Wi on the leaderboard and it wasnt a typo. Charlie Wi is an underrated Tour pro. Michelle Wie is still an overrated non-Tour pro. Thankfully, she is not in the field. Dont get me wrong. She still has a bright future. On the LPGA.
 
Anyway, the low Singh here was Jeev Milkha not Vijay.
 
There are millions of Singhs in India, said Jeev Milkha Singh, whose 68 was tied for the clubhouse lead at the end of the day. And most of them are not related.
 
Vijay Singh, who has won this championship twice and captured the WGC-Bridgestone just last week in Ohio, was 4 over par after four holes and stumbled to a 76. He is not, by the way, from India.
 
John Daly, whose 1991 PGA Championship victory seems a million broken dreams ago now, confirmed on the practice tee before his round that he is now working with teacher Rick Smith.
 
Talk about the coaching merry-go-round and six degrees of separation all wrapped into one. Smith is the guy who did a lot of good work with Phil Mickelson before Mickelson left him for Butch Harmon. Harmon is the guy who did a lot of good work with Tiger Woods and dumped Daly earlier this year because of what he perceived to be Long Johns errant off-course behavior. Now Daly and Smith are together and the squared circle is unbroken. Sort of.
 
Daly said he and Smith worked for seven hours last Sunday at nearby Oakland University. He said his injured ribs are feeling better and Smith has convinced him to use his right side more now.
 
Its all about the right side, Daly said. I love the guy. Plus hes a feel coach and Im a feel player.'
 
Dalys score Thursday: 74.
 
Meanwhile, Kenny Perry, a pre-tournament favorite, scratched a cornea in his eye while removing a contact lens Tuesday and was unable to practice Wednesday.
 
GolfChannel.com reported this story exclusively late Wednesday when there were still doubts that Perry might play at all Thursday.
 
The good news arrived when I ran into U.S. Ryder Cup captain Paul Azinger before his opening round. He told me had had spoken to Perry Thursday morning and that Perrys condition had cleared up quickly.
 
But the good news turned bad after Perry carded a first-round 79 and subsequently withdrew due to the eye injury, leaving him with only 18 holes of major championship golf played this year.
 
Finally there was the strange case of Robert Karlsson. Strange because so few people figured out that he should have been more of a pre-tournament pick than he was. Karlsson tied for eighth at the Masters in April; tied for fourth at the U.S. Open in June; and tied for seventh at the British Open last month.
 
Thursday at Oakland Hills he fired a 2-under 68. And that was after double-bogeying his first hole.
 
Just made a bit of stupidity, said the Swede of his inauspicious start.
 
It was that kind of day.
 
And then it rained.
 
Cant wait for tomorrow.
 
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