Clark Takes Control in South Africa

By Golf Channel NewsroomJanuary 10, 2003, 5:00 pm
South African Tim Clark took control on the second afternoon of the South African Airways Open by posting his second straight 5-under 67 and leads by three over Scotland's Andrew Coltart and Ireland's Peter Lawrie.
Nick Doughetry, Rolf Muntz and Gary Murphy stand four off the pace at 6-under-par 138. Dougherty tied the course record with his 6-under 66.
A threesome of South Africans make up a group that sits at 5-under par, five in back of Clark, and includes overnight leader Jean Hugo. Hugo struggled home on Friday with a 1-over 73.
Clark, taking advantage of the absence of fellow compatriots Ernie Els and Retief Goosen, is looking like the man to beat in his host country's Open championship. He goes into the weekend with a small but comfortable advantage, and also the knowledge that comes with being the defending champion.
Though giving back a shot to par on the par-5 16th, his only bogey of the tournament, Clark had a shot to give after a wonderful eagle at the 13th. Using a fairway wood, he knocked his approach to 20 feet and rolled home the putt for an eagle-3 and moved to three clear of the field.
'I feel pretty comfortable,' said Clark. 'I am eliminating mistakes and one bogey in 36 holes isnt bad.:'
Coltart (69) and Lawrie (69) matched each other's score for the second consecutive day as they both moved into contention.
Coltart had six birdies on the day, but a bogey and a double bogey on the front side cost him a possible share of the lead. Still, he was happy with the result.
This winter Ive possibly done the least work on my game and had the most fun,' Coltart said.
Lawrie, who won the Challenge Tour Grand Final, the European developmental tour's season-ending championship, enjoyed four birdies and a late bogey as he heads into quite possibly the biggest golf weekend in his career.
As for the weekend, I wont be looking at anyone else. I havent played in front of big crowds before and I am looking forward to being in the last group, but I dont think it will bother me, a relaxed Lawrie mused.
England's Justin Rose, perhaps the pre-tournament favorite, carded three birdies and no bogeys to move to 3-under and into a tie for 15th. Though seven strokes back, look for Rose to make up some ground come Saturday and Sunday.
Lee Westwood backed up his opening-round 75 with a dismal 77 that knocked him from play on the weekend. Three bogeys and two double bogeys kept the 2000 Order of Merit winner on his continual free-fall from the game's elite.
Related Links:
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.

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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.