Rare bird: Kaymer makes back-to-back eagles at Quail Hollow

By Randall MellMay 1, 2014, 6:57 pm

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Martin Kaymer rocketed up the leaderboard Thursday with back-to-back eagles at the Wells Fargo Championship.

“I told my caddie we should keep the ball because I’ve never done it before,” Kaymer said after posting a 3-under 69 at Quail Hollow Golf Club. “It’s very rare.”

Kaymer hit a rescue club to 15 feet at the seventh, converting the putt for his first eagle at the 517-yard par 5. He holed a pitch from 66 yards for his second eagle at the eighth.

“It was a very difficult pitch, and I would have taken a 3 there,” Kaymer said. “It was a big bonus.”

Wells Fargo Championship: Articles, videos and photos

Kaymer, 29, who won the 2010 PGA Championship and reigned as the world No. 1 for eight weeks in 2011, is seeking his first victory since winning the WGC-HSBC Champions in November of 2011. He’s No. 63 in the world but looking to move up again with a new swing.

“My game is very good, but my putting holds me back a little bit,” Kaymer said. “I’ve worked a lot on my swing, so I couldn’t spend that much time on the putting green.

“If the putting would be decent, I would shoot a lot better scores.”

Kaymer holed the clinching putt to cement Europe's historic Ryder Cup comeback against the Americans at Medinah two years ago. While Kaymer has shown flashes of his best form the last couple seasons, he hasn’t shown the kind of consistency that won him eight European Tour titles and two PGA Tour titles.

Kaymer began re-working his swing with his long-time coach, Gunter Kessler, after the Masters in 2011. He had climbed to No. 1 feeling like he was a one-dimensional player who relied too much on a fade. So, he went to work trying to fashion a swing that could work the ball both ways, to address a weakness Augusta National exposed.

“It’s improved a lot,” Kaymer said. “I can hit any shape now. There are no restrictions anymore. Before, I could only hit the fade, and that was it. It was a very safe, secure swing, but you have to hit different tee shots, especially here [at Quail Hollow]. It’s a lot better than two or three years ago.”

Kaymer said the swing changes were more involved than he imagined.

“I’m done maybe two months ago,” Kaymer said. “So, it’s almost three years. I thought it would take maybe four or five months. It did take a lot longer than I thought, but I’m happy with the way it turned out. It’s a big improvement.”

Kaymer’s hopeful better putting will get him back atop leaderboards.

“It’s just a matter of time,” Kaymer said. “If I get the putts going, hopefully we’ll have a lot more interviews together.”

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Key stats from Woods' historic win at East Lake

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 23, 2018, 10:47 pm

Tiger Woods won his 80th career PGA Tour title on Sunday with a two-stroke victory at the Tour Championship. Here are the key stats from the final round at East Lake.

• 80th career PGA Tour win; first since 2013 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational

• Two wins behind Sam Snead for most in PGA Tour history

• Snead was 47 years old when he won his 80th career PGA Tour title (Woods is 42)

• 43-for-45 converting outright 54-hole leads in PGA Tour career

• 24-for-24 converting 54-hole leads of three or more shots

• First win in 1,876 days; 118 players won on PGA Tour between Woods' wins

• Third career Tour Championship victory (most all-time)

• Has won Tour Championship in three different decades (1999, 2007, 2018)

• Fifth PGA Tour event won in three different decades (1990s, 2000s, 2010s)

• Projected to move to 13th in World Ranking with victory

• Was ranked 1,199 before beginning of 2017 Hero World Challenge

• Snead won 11 times after turning 43 (Woods turns 43 in December)

• Eighth PGA Tour win in Georgia; fourth-most of any state (Fla., Calif., Ohio)

• Extended lead to four strokes with birdie on first hole of round

• Second in field in strokes gained: putting this week

• First in field in scrambling this week (17-for-24)

• Finished second in FedExCup; was making first Tour Championship start since 2013

• Led field in one-putt percentage this week (51.4%)

• Finishes season first on PGA Tour in strokes gained: approach

(Stats provided by the Golf Channel editorial research unit.)

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Rose captures FedExCup, $10 million

By Mercer BaggsSeptember 23, 2018, 10:45 pm

ATLANTA – Like the “Price is Right” big wheel, $10 million spun around and around on Sunday, waiting to land on someone. It rolled past Dustin Johnson, looked like it was going to settle on Tiger Woods, and then made a final tick to rest on an ecstatic Justin Rose.

Rose won the FedExCup title on Sunday at the Tour Championship, two-putting for birdie on the par-5 18th to secure the big bonus. Woods, who won the tournament, finished second, with Bryson DeChambeau third.

Rose entered the final round as the projected winner, tied for second in the event, three shots back of Woods. However, it was a struggle from the start for the – now former – world No. 1. Rose made four bogeys and one birdie over his first 15 holes, and when he bogeyed the par-4 16th, the scenario became clear: Play the last two in 1 under or lose the cup.

Final FedExCup results and payout breakdown

Full-field scores from the Tour Championship

Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

Johnson had an outside shot at claiming the $10 million, but parred the last. He finished in solo third place, four back of Woods.

Woods, meanwhile, was in command of the tournament from the start on Sunday. He played steadily, for the most part, and no one provided a challenge. In order to win the cup, he needed to win the event – which was close to a lock all day – and Rose needed to finish in a three-way tie for fifth or worse.

So, here he was, Rose, tied for SIXTH place on the 18th hole. A birdie and he’d jump into a three-way tie for fourth – as well as into a mountain of cash.

Rose hit the par-5 18th in two and successfully two-putted to clinch the cup. He didn’t win a playoff event, but his MC-2-2-T4 results were good enough, points wise, to capture the season-long race.

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Social media explodes over Tiger's 80th win

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 23, 2018, 10:45 pm

After a five-year hiatus, Tiger Woods made his triumphant return to the winner's circle on Sunday at the Tour Championship.

As evidenced by a quick look at social media, Woods' win set the golf world on fire, with everyone from Jack Nicklaus to Michelle Wie sending their congratulations to the 42-year-old.

Here are the best reactions from a wild Sunday at East Lake, where Woods claimed PGA Tour victory No. 80:

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Highlights: Tiger's final round at East Lake

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 23, 2018, 10:40 pm

Tiger Woods won the Tour Championship on Sunday by two strokes. Here are the highlights from the final round.

Woods got off to a great start with a birdie on No. 1.

He then made eight straight pars to close out the front nine in 1 under par. Woods started the back nine with a bogey at 10, but he rebounded with this birdie at No. 13.

Woods leaked some oil coming in with bogeys at 15 and 16, but this par putt on 17 gave him a crucial two-stroke lead heading to 18.

For the fourth straight day, Woods smoked his drive on 18.

A huge gallery followed Woods up the 18th hole.

Woods missed his birdie putt on 18, but it was an easy par for a two-stroke victory and win No. 80.