Woods starts hot, fades to 2-under 70 at Hero

By Will GrayDecember 3, 2016, 10:06 pm

NASSAU, Bahamas – A red-hot start fizzled out down the stretch for Tiger Woods, who continued his comeback with a 2-under 70 in the third round of the Hero World Challenge.

Woods birdied his first three holes, then added a hole-out from a bunker on No. 5 to race up the standings at the 17-man event where he also serves as tournament host. But Woods would bogey the next hole, then cap a back-nine 38 with a watery double bogey on No. 18.

Despite the late setback, Woods remained upbeat and optimistic about his performance through 54 holes.

“If you think about it, I’ve gotten off to some really good starts the first three days,” said Woods, who has played the front nine in 10 under for the week. “Generally when I come back from layoffs, that’s the most concerning part of the game is getting off to, I guess, halfway decent starts.”


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Woods made the turn in 4-under 32 and reached 5 under on the day after rolling in a 15-footer on No. 11. But short misses led to back-to-back bogeys on Nos. 13 and 14, and Woods put each of his last five drives into the sand. The last of that string gave him a middling lie for his final approach, which he deposited in a greenside pond.

Woods now sits alone in 10th place, firmly in the middle of the pack in an event that features several of the game’s best players. It’s a result that he’ll take given how low he set the bar for himself heading into his first competitive start in nearly 16 months.

“To be honest with you, I didn’t really have much because I didn’t know,” he said. “I hadn’t played in a very long time, and I didn’t know what I was going to feel like after each round.”

Woods insists his body feels good with one round to go. While he’s hoping to convert front-nine momentum into a low score like he did during Friday’s bogey-free 65, Woods already appears ready to declare this week a success.

“I’m very pleased to be back and to be able to compete at this level again. It’s been a very, very difficult road,” he said. “I was really, really struggling, and I struggled for a very long time. Worked with my physios and had to be very patient, and was finally able to start building, and here we are.”

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Inbee Park quietly reclaims world No. 1

By Randall MellApril 23, 2018, 6:44 pm

Inbee Park moved back to No. 1 in the Rolex Women’s World Rankings in about as ho-hum fashion as you’ll ever see a player take the top spot.

It isn’t that she doesn’t care about the top ranking. It just wasn’t a priority in her return to golf this year, after missing big portions of the last two years with injuries.

With an Olympic gold medal and seven major championship titles, the LPGA Hall of Famer isn’t done trying to top the scoreboards that matter most to her.

“To be honest, I never really think about being No. 1 again,” Park said early last week, before tying for second at the Hugel-JTBC LA Open. “If it comes to me, great. If not, it doesn't matter.”

It came to her for the fourth time in her career.

Park, 29, reigned at No. 1 for 59 weeks in her longest run on top, back in the 2013 and ’14 seasons.

Oddly, this run to No. 1 almost comes as a surprise to Park, who didn’t need long to get back to the top spot after returning to the tour. She won the Bank of Hope Founders Cup last month in her second after missing seven months with a back injury.

Park last lost the No. 1 ranking in October of 2015, doing so to Lydia Ko.

In six starts this year, Park has finished T-3 or better four times. She leads the tour in scoring average (69.13) and is second in greens in regulation (77.5 percent).

Just wait until her putter heats up.

Yeah, Park’s not very satisfied with her putting. She’s one of the greatest putters who ever played the women’s game, but she has been frustrated with the inconsistency of her stroke much of this season. Of course, her standards are high. She ranks second in putts per greens in regulation so far this year.

On Sunday, this is how Park summed up her putting in 2018: “Some days, I’ve been really good. Some days, I’ve been really bad.”

Park has led the LPGA in putts per GIR in five of the last 10 years. She switched from her preferred mallet-style putter to a blade earlier this season and won with a Toulon Madison blade at the Founders Cup last month. She was back with an Odyssey White Hot 2-Ball mallet this past week. That’s the putter she used to win the gold medal in Rio de Janeiro two years ago. She used an Odyssey Sabertooth winged mallet in her 2013 run of three consecutive major championship victories.

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Goose takes down junior golfer - it's awesome

By Nick MentaApril 23, 2018, 6:33 pm

A goose evidently went into business for itself somewhere in Michigan and took down this high school golfer in dramatic, hilarious, photographed fashion. To the evidence we go ...

Per the Blissfield Athletics Twitter account, "The golfers just finished teeing off and were walking down the fairway. To the left there was a goose nest and the golfers did a good job of avoiding it but the guard goose hanging out on the far right thought differently."

Just so we can all continue laughing, the Blissfield account confirmed the kid was OK.

If you're looking for related content, check out Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" and this video:

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It's official: Charles Schwab to sponsor Colonial event

By Associated PressApril 23, 2018, 6:30 pm

FORT WORTH, Texas – The longest-running PGA Tour event still played at its original site has a new title sponsor, one already deeply involved in golf.

The PGA Tour and Colonial Country Club announced Monday that financial services provider Charles Schwab & Co. will take over as title sponsor starting in 2019. The four-year agreement goes through 2022.

Local companies are backing the event after upscale grocer Dean and Deluca withdrew as title sponsor after only two tournaments of a six-year deal. The companies include American Airlines, AT&T, XTO Energy and Burlington Northern Santa Fe railway.

Charles Schwab is already a major sponsor on the PGA Tour. On the PGA Tour Champions, the Charles Schwab Cup is awarded to the season's top player.

Next month's tournament at Colonial, which has hosted since 1946, will be played as the Fort Worth Invitational.

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Rando withdraws name from Ryder Cup consideration

By Nick MentaApril 23, 2018, 6:11 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - In a legitimately unexpected move, Stephen Atkinson has removed his name from Ryder Cup consideration, according to a letter leaked by European captain Thomas Bjorn on Monday.

Atkinson, the 52,187th-ranked player in the world and recent winner of the West Hill monthly medal, penned the following letter to Bjorn, removing his name from consideration for September's biennial matches.

Atkinson, who also serves as the Captain of the Babalou Golf Society, immediately squashed speculation that he could instead serve as a vice captain - as Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia have in the past - writing that any such suggestion would be "unfair to both the society and the Ryder Cup team."

The decision leaves Bjorn potentially shorthanded and also appears to have sent him into some sort of existential malaise, the severity of which is not yet known.

Atkinson joins P.J. Willett and Central Standard Time in the Hall of Fame of off-course distractions for a European squad that hasn't lost on its home soil in 25 years.