The usual and unusual suspects

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 1, 2008, 4:00 pm
Comebacker duties have once again been taken over by the Golf Guy, as Brian Hewitt has the week off ' tanning in Jamaica or saving dolphins in China or something.
Without further ado:
Raymond writes: I'm not sure which of you is the more pathetic loser. Her (Michelle Wie) for failing to understand the purpose of the scoring tent or you (Brian Hewitt) for pampering her and claiming the LPGA should have prevented the incident. True, the LPGA was wrong in not identifying the problem and should have DQd her prior to round three. But, all said and done let's put the fault squarely on the shoulders of the person responsible, Michelle! The scoring tent is not a stupid rule. The scoring tent is not old school. The scoring tent has a distinct purpose, that is, it is the first opportunity for the golfer to 'see and validate' their score. Period! You view your 'official score card,' make corrections if necessary, AND SIGN THE CARD!
The Comebacker
Heres the thing, Ray. Can I call you Ray? OK, then: making a player enter a scorers area to check and verify the numbers on his/her card is legit. Telling them that they are disqualified because they walked out of said area without penning their signature is D-U-M-B. How did them leaving and coming back affect anything? Its not like this is a test and a player can leave the area, get the proper answers and then come back and change their card. Golf is full of antiquated rules that need to be updated. This one falls in that category.


Jim writes: 1. I think that the American team will do a lot better than the pundits think in the Ryder Cup. 2. Why is Mike Weir not shown in the standings for the FedExCup? 3. A few years ago, during a Wednesday show at the Dublin course, (Padraig) Harrington was asked to give a demonstration by Jack (Nicklaus) as to his touch with the shorter clubs. He used a 7-iron to demonstrate the various shots he could use with the one club. He said that this was the first club he was given and he used it on the tees, fairways and bunkers. He hit it long, low, high, hooked and faded the ball. He said he missed the creative ways to play a course now that the emphasis was on distance. I agree with him and am fed up with the long drive and then a choice of four wedges into a rather large green. It was interesting to see how many of the regular PGA TOUR players handled the conditions at 'The Open' this year. The creativeness of the player came to the fore; surprise of surprises when Harrington won going away. 4. What has happened to Vijay Singh? He did not play for three weeks before 'The Open' and I assumed that he was getting ready in England. He never made the cut. The poor Canadian Open was last week. Singh, who has won it at the expense of Weir, was always a show. This year he failed to come, why? 5. I can solve Michelle Wie's problem. Someone should kidnap her father for at least ten years.
The Comebacker
1.) An American team filled with Hooters Tour players couldnt fare worse than the last collection of All Stars. 2.) Its because hes Canadian and FedEx doesnt deliver up there. No, actually hes 35th in the standings. 3.) If the tournaments really wanted to make their events more challenging all they have to do is raise the rough one inch. Make it a penalty to miss the fairway. Creativity and planning is instantly brought back into the game. 4.) Vijay is 45 years old and completely confused with his swing. Why wasnt he in Canada? He probably needed a break with the WGC event this week and the PGA next week. 5.) In his absence someone else would probably get in her ear and fill her head with bad advice.


Ken writes: Want to compliment you (Brian Hewitt) on the proper term for what I humbly submit is THE major of all majors ... I wish you would give a tutorial to the majority of your GC colleagues who insist on calling it the British Open. Case in point: watching Golf Central and listening to VC (Vince Cellini?) & BL (Who the hell is BL? Bruce Lee?) using the wrong term repeatedly in the broadcast. It is universally known as The Open except the vast majority of U.S. based writers & TV announcers. Please Brian, pass on your 'wisdom' to the others & give THE OPEN the respect it deserves!!!!
The Comebacker
We at GOLF CHANNEL are supposed to refer to the Open Championship as such. And so we do, for the most part. However I cant speak for Hewitt, but the U.S. Open is referred to the U.S. Open because it is played exclusively in the United States. When The Open is actually contested outside of the United Kingdom Ill consistently refer to it as something other than the British Open.


Roy writes: Look for Brandt Snedeker to contend (this) week at Bridgestone and ,yes, you heard it here the PGA. He is focused like his good friend Kenny Perry to win and make the Ryder Cup team. A few missed cuts have gotten his attention and time is short. By the way, Kenny is looking smarter and smarter to skip the Opens. Unlike many Tour pros, he knows what he can and cannot do at this stage in his career.
The Comebacker
Snedeker shot 2-under 68 in the first round of the WGC-Bridgestone. Will he win the PGA? Golf Guy says no, but if he does we will give Roy major props in the subsequent Comebacker. As for Perry, count Golf Guy as among the group of people who feel Perry can play whenever and wherever he likes but theres no way Golf Guy would have ever skipped a major championship. Ever.

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    Lincicome grouped with two rookies in Barbasol

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 17, 2018, 9:54 pm

    Brittany Lincicome will tee it up with a pair of rookies when she makes her first start in a PGA Tour event Thursday at the Barbasol Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky.

    Lincicome, an eight-time LPGA winner, is scheduled to go off the 10th tee at 9:59 a.m. ET in the first round with Sam Ryder, 28, and Conrad Shindler, 29. They’re off the first tee Friday at 2:59 p.m. ET

    Lincicome will become just the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event, joining Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie.

    “The first three or four holes, I’ll be a nervous wreck, for sure,” Linicome said.



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    Lincicome thrilled by reception from male pros

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 8:31 pm

    Brittany Lincicome wondered how PGA Tour pros would greet her when she arrived to play the Barbasol Championship this week.

    She wondered if there would be resentment.

    She also wondered how fans at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., would receive her, and if a social media mob would take up pitchforks.

    “I can’t stop smiling,” Lincicome said Tuesday after her first practice round upon arriving. “Everyone has been coming up to me and wishing me luck. That means a lot.”

    PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, husband of LPGA pro Gerina Piller, welcomed her immediately.

    Other pros sought her out on the practice putting green.

    She said she was also welcomed joining pros at a table in player dining.

    Fans have been stopping her for autographs.

    “It has been an awesome reception,” said Dewald Gouws, her husband, a former long-drive competitor. “I think it’s put her much more at ease, seeing the reception she is getting. There’s a lot of mutual respect.”

    Lincicome, 32, wasn’t sure if she would be playing a practice round alone Tuesday morning, but when she made her way to the first tee, Domenico Geminiani was there, just about to go off.

    He waved Lincicome over.

    “He said, `Hey, Brittany, do you want to join me?’” Gouws said. “Come to find out, Dom’s a pretty cool guy.”

    Geminiani made it into the field as a Monday qualifier.

    “The two of us were both trying to figure things out together,” Lincicome said.

    Keene Trace will play to 7,328 yards on the scorecard. That’s more than 800 yards longer than Highland Meadows, where Lincicome finished second at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic last weekend. Keene Trace was playing even longer than its listed yardage Tuesday, with recent rains softening it.

    Nicknamed “Bam Bam,” Lincicome is one of the longest hitters in the women’s game. Her 269.5 yard average drive is 10th in the LPGA ranks. It would likely be dead last on the PGA Tour, where Brian Stuard (278.2) is the last player on the stats list at No. 201.

    “I think if I keep it in the fairway, I’ll be all right,” Lincicome said.

    Lincicome is an eight-time LPGA winner, with two major championships among those titles. She is just the sixth woman to compete in a PGA Tour event, the first in a decade, since Michelle Wie played the Reno-Tahoe Open, the last of her eight starts against the men.

    Lincicome will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Wie in the elite ranks.

    Zaharias, by the way, is the only woman to make a 36-hole cut in PGA Tour history, making it at the 1945 L.A. Open before missing a 54-hole cut on the weekend.

    What are Lincicome’s expectations?

    She would love to make the cut, but . . .

    “Just going to roll with it and see what happens,” she said. “This is once in a lifetime, probably a one-and-done opportunity. I’m just going to enjoy it.”

    Lincicome grew up playing for the boys’ golf team at Seminole High on the west coast of Florida. She won a couple city championships.

    “I always thought it would be cool to compete against the guys on the PGA Tour,” Lincicome said. “I tend to play more with the guys than women at home. I never would have gone out and told my agent, `Let’s go try to play in a PGA Tour event,’ but when Tom Murray called with this opportunity, I was really blown away and excited by it. I never in a million years thought I would have this opportunity.”

    Tom Murray, the president of Perio, the parent company of Barbasol and Pure Silk, invited Lincicome to accept one of the tournament’s sponsor exemptions. Lincicome represents Pure Silk.

    Lincicome said her desire to play a PGA Tour event is all about satisfying her curiosity, wanting to know how she would stack up at this level. She also wants to see if the experience can help take her to the next level in the women’s game.

    As a girl growing up, she played Little League with the boys, instead of softball with the girls. She said playing the boys in golf at Seminole High helped her get where she is today.

    “The guys were better, and it pushed me to want to be better,” Lincicome said. “I think playing with the guys [on the PGA Tour], I will learn something to take to LPGA events, and it will help my game, for sure.”

    Lincicome has been pleased that her fellow LPGA pros are so supportive. LPGA winner Kris Tamulis is flying into Kentucky as moral support. Other LPGA pros may also be coming in to support her.

    The warm fan reception Lincicome is already getting at Keene Trace matters, too.

    “She’s already picked up some new fans this week, and hopefully she will pick up some more,” Gouws said. “I don’t think she’s putting too much expectation on herself. I think she really does just want to have fun.”

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    Stunner: Inbee Park steps aside for Int. Crown

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 4:00 pm

    There was a big surprise this week when the LPGA announced the finalized lineups for the UL International Crown.

    Rolex world No. 1 Inbee Park won’t be teeing it up for the host South Koreans Oct. 4-7 in Incheon.

    She has withdrawn, saying she wanted another Korean to be able to experience the thrill of representing her country.

    It’s a stunner given the importance the LPGA has placed on taking the UL International Crown to South Korea and its golf-crazy allegiance to the women’s game in the Crown’s first staging outside the United States.

    Two-time major champion In Gee Chun will replace Park.

    "It was my pleasure and honor to participate in the first UL International Crown in 2014 and at the 2016 Olympics, and I cannot describe in one word how amazing the atmosphere was to compete as a representative of my country,” Park said. “There are so many gifted and talented players in Korea, and I thought it would be great if one of the other players was given the chance to experience the 2018 UL International Crown.”

    Chun, another immensely popular player in South Korea, was the third alternate, so to speak, with the world rankings used to field teams. Hye Jin Choi and Jin Young Ko were higher ranked than Chun but passed because of commitments made to competing in a Korean LPGA major that week. The other South Koreans who previously qualified are So Yeon Ryu, Sung Hyun Park and I.K. Kim.

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    Na: I can admit, 'I went through the yips'

    By Rex HoggardJuly 17, 2018, 3:35 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Following his victory two weeks ago at A Military Tribute at the Greenbrier, Kevin Na said his second triumph on the PGA Tour was the most rewarding of his career.

    Although he declined to go into details as to why the victory was so gratifying at The Greenbrier, as he completed his practice round on Tuesday at the Open Championship, Na shed some light on how difficult the last few years have been.

    “I went through the yips. The whole world saw that. I told people, 'I can’t take the club back,'” Na said on Tuesday at Carnoustie. “People talked about it, 'He’s a slow player. Look at his routine.' I was admitting to the yips. I didn’t use the word ‘yip’ at the time. Nobody wants to use that word, but I’m over it now so I can use it. The whole world saw it.”

    Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    Na, who made headlines for his struggles to begin his backswing when he found himself in the lead at the 2012 Players Championship, said he asked other players who had gone through similar bouts with the game’s most dreaded ailment how they were able to get through it.

    “It took time,” he said. “I forced myself a lot. I tried breathing. I tried a trigger. Some guys will have a forward press or the kick of the right knee. That was hard and the crap I got for it was not easy.”

    The payoff, however, has steadily arrived this season. Na said he’d been confident with his game this season following a runner-up showing at the Genesis Open and a fourth-place finish at the Fort Worth Invitational, and he felt he was close to a breakthrough. But being able to finish a tournament like he did at The Greenbrier, where he won by five strokes, was particularly rewarding.

    “All good now,” he smiled. “I knew I was good enough to win again, but until you do it sometimes you question yourself. It’s just the honest truth.”