International Attracts Some Big Names

By Golf Channel NewsroomAugust 2, 2004, 4:00 pm
The International 2004Castle Pines Golf Club is nothing like Whistling Straits. The International is a far cry from the PGA Championship.
It would seem logical that many of the top players would skip this event in preparation for the seasons final major, but once again the field is filled with notable names.
This probably isn't the best golf course to walk before the PGA, but it is a good place get ready for the PGA because it's a good course; I like the place and I love the format. It's a good place to warm up, said Davis Love III.
Love made those statements prior to the start of last years event ' before he won.
The win was easy for Love ' he had a 12 point margin of victory under the modified Stableford format, but the path to victory was a bit rocky, as he had to deal with rumors all week surrounding his marriage.
This year, Love is more at ease in his personal life, but, professionally, hes suffered a falloff from 2003.
The International was Loves fourth win a year ago; hes still seeking his first in 04.
Love has a pair of runner-up finishes this year, including a loss to Tiger Woods in the final of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. He also has a tie for sixth in the Masters and a tie for fifth in the British Open.
But no wins.
There are, however, plenty of 2004 winners in the field this week -- 16, to be exact.
That list includes Ernie Els and Todd Hamilton, who is making his first start since knocking off Els in the British Open.
Also in attendance ' or at least scheduled to compete ' is David Duval.
Duval is a resident of nearby Cherry Hills Village. This tournament is special for the newly anointed Coloradan, as it is where he met his wife.
Duval met Colorado native Susie Persichitte, a mother of three, here ' in a restaurant, not on the golf course ' in 2003. The two married March 6.
Duval has played this event nine times before, finishing runner-up to David Toms in 1999. This will be only his second start of the season. After taking the first half off to try and rediscover his game, he missed the cut at the U.S. Open. He was supposed to compete at the British Open, but withdrew after the Tuesday practice round because of a bad back.
The modified Stableford scoring system awards 8 points for double eagle, 5 for eagle, 2 for birdie, zero for par, minus-1 for bogey and minus-3 for double bogey or worse.
Phil Mickelson, who is skipping the tournament for the first time as a professional, shares the 72-hole scoring record. Mickelson, in 1997, and Els, in 2000, each totaled 48 points.
Greg Whisman, in 1992, and Tom Purtzer, in 1997, share the 18-hole record with 20 points each.
Mickelson isn't the only notable long-time participant who is absent this year. Vijay Singh, who won his fourth tournament of the year last week at the Buick Open, is missing for the first time since 1997. Mike Weir and Sergio Garcia, who have each played here five times, are also not playing.
U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen pulled out after bruising his hip during a jet ski accident last week while on vacation. He does expect to play next week in the PGA Championship.
Tiger Woods has only played here twice, and not since 1999.
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    Watch: Full replays of The Open coverage

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 12:55 pm

    NBC Sports and Golf Channel are showcasing nearly 50 hours of live coverage of the 147th Open. Missed anything? Well, you can catch up right here. Click on the links below for replays from Carnoustie, broken down into daily segments:

    Friday, Day 2 (Times ET)

    1:30-8:20AM (Watch): On a rainy Friday morning at Carnoustie, Rory McIlroy shot 69 to reach 4 under, while Zach Johnson fired a 67 for the early lead. Click here or on the image below to watch.

    Thursday, Day 1 (Times ET)

    Noon-4PM (Watch): Tiger Woods was up and down in the afternoon, as winds picked up a little and no one could catch Kevin Kisner. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Woods, Russell Knox and Hideki Matsuyama.

    1:30-8:25AM (Watch): Defending champion Jordan Spieth got off to a good start, while Kevin Kisner (66) set the early pace. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and Chris Wood.

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    Fleetwood, with his fancy umbrella, fires 65 on Day 2

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 12:34 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tommy Fleetwood looked like an Open rookie when he set out on Friday under gray skies and a cold, steady rain.

    Because the Englishman doesn’t have an equipment sponsor he made a quick turn through the merchandise tent for an umbrella – but at least he didn’t have to pay for it.

    “We stole it,” he laughed when asked about his Open-brand umbrella. “We got one given for free, actually. We didn't steal it. We don't always carry an umbrella. So it just so happens this week that we've got a nice Open Championship [umbrella]. It looked quite nice, the yellow and the course.”

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    It was Fleetwood’s only rookie move on Day 2 at Carnoustie, posting a flawless 65 to move into an early tie for second place at 5 under par.

    Fleetwood holds the competitive course record at Carnoustie, a 9-under 63 he shot last fall during the European Tour’s Dunhill Links Championship, but given Friday’s conditions and the difficulty of this course during The Open, his 65 on Friday might have been better.

    “It's not a course record, but it's pretty good,” said Fleetwood, who was stroke behind leader Zach Johnson. “If you went out, you wouldn't really fancy being 6 under out there. So I think that's a good indication of how good it was.”

    It was a dramatic turnaround for Fleetwood on Friday. He said he struggled with his ball-striking, specifically his tee shots, on Day 1, but he was able to turn things around with an hour-long session on the range following his opening round.

    Getty Images

    Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

    By Tiger TrackerJuly 20, 2018, 10:15 am

    Following an even-par 71 in the first round of the 147th Open Championship, Tiger Woods looks to make a move on Day 2 at Carnoustie.

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    McIlroy responds to Harmon's 'robot' criticism

    By Mercer BaggsJuly 20, 2018, 6:53 am

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Rory McIlroy said during his pre-championship news conference that he wanted to play more "carefree" – citing Jon Rahm’s approach now and the way McIlroy played in his younger days.

    McIlroy got off to a good start Thursday at Carnoustie, shooting 2-under 69, good for a share of eighth place.

    But while McIlroy admits to wanting to be a little less structured on the course, he took offense to comments made by swing coach Butch Harmon during a Sky Sports telecast.

    Said Harmon:

    “Rory had this spell when he wasn’t putting good and hitting the ball good, and he got so wrapped up in how he was going to do it he forgot how to do it.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    “He is one of the best players the game has ever seen. If he would just go back to being a kid and playing the way he won these championships and play your game, don’t have any fear or robotic thoughts. Just play golf. Just go do it.

    “This is a young kid who’s still one of the best players in the world. He needs to understand that. Forget about your brand and your endorsement contracts. Forget about all that. Just go back to having fun playing golf. I still think he is one of the best in the world and can be No.1 again if he just lets himself do it.”

    McIlroy, who has never worked with Harmon, responded to the comments when asked about them following his opening round.

    “Look, I like Butch. Definitely, I would say I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum than someone that's mechanical and someone that's – you know, it's easy to make comments when you don't know what's happening,” McIlroy said. “I haven't spoken to Butch in a long time. He doesn't know what I'm working on in my swing. He doesn't know what's in my head. So it's easy to make comments and easy to speculate. But unless you actually know what's happening, I just really don't take any notice of it.”

    McIlroy second round at The Open began at 2:52 a.m. ET.