Howell Moves Three Clear in England

By Golf Channel NewsroomMay 26, 2006, 4:00 pm
European TourSURREY, England -- David Howell fired a 7-under 65 Friday to grab a three-stroke lead near the halfway point of the suspended BMW Championship. Howell stands at 11-under-par 133.
The start of the second round was delayed by one hour because of wet course conditions and was eventually suspended due to darkness with 15 players remaining on the course.
The second round will resume Saturday at 7:00 a.m. local time with the third round commencing at 8:30 a.m.
Nick Dougherty, who shared the first-round lead with Paul Casey, Luke Donald and Andrew McLardy, posted a 3-under 69 to slip into second place at 8-under-par 136.
Robert Karlsson (68) and defending champion Angel Cabrera (69) share third place at minus-7. Simon Khan is one stroke further back at 6-under-par 138 after a 4-under 68 in round two.
Howell dipped to minus-3 as he started his round with a bogey on No. 3 at Wentworth Club's West Course. He bounced right back with a birdie on the par-5 fourth and another at the fifth.
The Englishman parred his next three holes before sinking a birdie on the par-4 ninth to make the turn at 6 under, two strokes behind Dougherty.
Howell, who collected his third tour win in November at the HSBC Champions Tournament, then birdied the par-3 10th for the second straight day. He came back with a birdie at the 12th to join Dougherty atop the leaderboard.
The 30-year-old grabbed the lead with a birdie on No. 15. Howell birdied No. 17 for the second round in a row to move to minus-10. He also birdied the last to extend his cushion to three strokes.
'I guess that's one of the best rounds I've played,' Howell admitted. 'Although I didn't expect to be sitting here at 11 under par. There is a long way to go, but hopefully I can give myself a chance over the weekend.'
Dougherty parred five straight to get his round going, but then faltered to a bogey on the sixth, his second bogey on that hole in two days.
The 24-year-old got that stroke back with a birdie on eight, but he tripped to a bogey on the ninth. Dougherty's four back-nine birdies all came on holes he birdied in the opening round.
The 2005 Caltex Masters winner birdied the par-5 12th and par-3 14th to move to 6 under. Dougherty birdied the back-to-back par-5s, 17 and 18, to take second place at minus-8.
'I've backed up a good start with another good round,' stated Dougherty. 'I am pleased because it's tricky out there. Winning this would be the biggest thing I've ever achieved and would pretty much put me on the Ryder Cup team.'
Donald and Casey each carded rounds of even-par 72 to drop into a share of sixth place. They were joined at 5-under-par 139 by Francois Delamontagne, who shot 70 on Friday.
Miguel Angel Jimenez shares ninth place with four other players at minus-4. He stands alongside Niclas Fasth, Raphael Jacquelin and Peter Lawrie. Garry Houston also is minus-4 and has completed 14 holes of his second round.
McLardy struggled to a 2-over 74 to slide into a tie for 14th at 3-under-par 141.
The cut is projected to be 2-over-par 146. Among those likely to miss out on the final two rounds are Darren Clarke (147), Thomas Bjorn (148) and Lee Westwood (149).
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - BMW Championship
  • Full Coverage - BMW Championship
  • Golf Channel Airtimes
  • Getty Images

    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.

    Getty Images

    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.

    Getty Images

    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.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    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.

    Getty Images

    Rose: T-2 finish renewed my love of The Open

    By Jay CoffinJuly 22, 2018, 9:00 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Justin Rose made the cut on the number at The Open and was out for an early Saturday morning stroll at Carnoustie when, all of a sudden, he started putting together one great shot after another.

    There was no pressure. No one had expected anything from someone so far off the lead. Yet Rose shot 30 on the final nine holes to turn in 7-under 64, the lowest round of the championship. By day’s end he was five shots behind a trio of leaders that included Jordan Spieth.

    Rose followed the 64 with a Sunday 69 to tie for second place, two shots behind winner Francesco Molinari. His 133 total over the weekend was the lowest by a shot, and for a moment he thought he had a chance to hoist the claret jug, until Molinari put on a ball-striking clinic down the stretch with birdies on 14 and 18.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    “I just think having made the cut number, it’s a great effort to be relevant on the leaderboard on Sunday,” said Rose, who collected his third-career runner-up in a major. He’s also finished 12th or better in all three majors this year.

    In the final round, Rose was well off the pace until his second shot on the par-5 14th hole hit the pin. He had a tap-in eagle to move to 5 under. Birdie at the last moved him to 6 under and made him the clubhouse leader for a few moments.

    “It just proves to me that I can play well in this tournament, that I can win The Open,” Rose said. “When I’m in the hunt, I enjoy it. I play my best golf. I don’t back away.

    “That was a real positive for me, and it renewed the love of The Open for me.”