Singh in Charge Entering AmEx

By Golf Channel NewsroomSeptember 27, 2004, 4:00 pm
Tiger Woods has won nine World Golf Championship events. Hes won this weeks WGC-American Express Championship three times ' on three different courses, including this years return stop in Kilkenny, Ireland. Hes the two-time defending champion of the tournament, in fact.
 
By most accounts, Woods should be the clear favorite to again win the AmEx.
 
But there are two variables that factor into the possibility of a losing equation for Tiger Woods. One, is Vijay Singh. Two, is Tiger himself.
 
Woods won this tournament for the third time in five contests when he defeated Singh, Tim Herron and Stuart Appleby by two strokes at the Capital City Club.
 
It marked Tigers fifth win of the 2003 season, and proved to be the necessary boost Woods needed to surpass Singh ' in their peers minds ' for Player of the Year honors.
 
This year, there is no debating as to who is the best player on tour ' let alone the better player ' right now ' between the two.
 
Singh is having what many are referring to as a 'Tiger-like' season; though, he's already eclipsed Woods' best season in one regard.
 
He has won eight times this season, including a remarkable five of his last six tournaments. Tiger won nine times in 2000.
 
Tiger collected $9,188,321 in 2000; Singh has already pocketed $9,455,566 -- and plans to play at least three more tournaments this season.
 
Tiger, however, is not having a Tiger-like season. Hes won but once this year, at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship, and is still seeking his first stroke-play victory in 2004.
 
And we wont even get into that whole Ryder Cup debacle.
 
One week its poor driving, another its erratic iron play, another its sporadic putting. Or maybe he just gets flat out beaten by another. There seems to always be something keeping Woods out of the winners circle.
 
But somehow, someway, he continues to come close.
 
Woods has 12 top-10s in 17 starts this season. Three of his last four finishes have been top-3s. Fourteen of his last 16 rounds have been in the 60s.
 
Its certainly not Tigers most glorious season, but its certainly one that will define his grit.
 
For Singh, this season is both glorious and defining.
 
He finally toppled Woods atop the Official World Golf Ranking. He has already broken Tigers single-season money record. He's established a career-best for tournaments won in one year. And ' most importantly ' he is again a major champion.
 
It might come as a bit of a surprise, but Singh has never won a WGC event. But if he is to win one, it will most likely be the AmEx, where he has three consecutive top-3 finishes.
 
This is the fifth playing of the AmEx. The first two editions were contested at Valderrama in Spain. It was supposed to be held at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, Mo., in 2001, but was canceled in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks. The following year it was held on the Emerald Isle, and last year was moved to Woodstock, Ga.
 
Now its back at Mount Juliet Estate, a Jack Nicklaus design. Its the only WGC event to be played on European soil.
 
The field includes the top 50 players from the world rankings, as well as leading money winners from various tours (top 30 from the PGA Tour money list and top 20 from the European Volvo Order of Merit). There is not cut.
 
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    Ryu thriving again after simple advice from Inbee Park

    By Randall MellJune 21, 2018, 7:07 pm

    So Yeon Ryu shared Rolex Player of the Year honors last year.

    She reigned as world No. 1 for almost five months.

    So when she couldn’t keep her momentum going at year’s start, she got frustrated. She wasn’t happy with two top 10s in her first 11 starts.

    “I lost a lot of confidence at the beginning of the year,” Ryu said Thursday as she prepared to lead a strong field as the defending champion in Friday’s start of the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship. “My expectation level was way too high.”

    So she sought the counsel of her pal, world No. 1 Inbee Park, who gave her some plain-spoken advice.


    Full-field scores from the Walmart Arkansas Championship


    “Get over it,” Park told her. “You know what to do. You’ve done it, so it’s not really a big deal. Don’t worry about it. You were No. 1. You’ve achieved a lot of things as a professional golfer. Just don’t be too hard on yourself.”

    Ryu got over it winning the Meijer LPGA Classic last week, the sixth LPGA title of her career, her third in 15 months. She’s feeling good again leading a stellar field this week at Pinnacle Country Club in Rogers, Ark., a strong tune up before next week’s KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, the year’s third major championship.

    World No. 1 Park, No. 2 Ariya Jutanugarn and No. 3 Lexi Thompson are among the top nine players in the world scheduled to compete this week. Twenty-four of the top 30 are in the field.

    “When you come to defend your title, you obviously have a lot of pressure, but after I won last week, now I sort of think, maybe I have a chance to defend my title,” Ryu said. “So I've got total confidence, by last week.”

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    Watch: Spieth, JT hole bunker shots in back-to-back groups

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 21, 2018, 6:57 pm

    Jordan Spieth has a thing for holing bunker shots at the Travelers Championship, where he made one in a playoff to win last year.

    He did it again in Round 1 at TPC River Highlands, knocking in this shot for eagle at the par-5 sixth to reach 4 under par for the tournament



    In the next group, Justin Thomas did the same thing to reach 1 under. Keep an eye out for the best part of this highlight, when Thomas' caddie Jimmy Johnson tries to hand him his putter.

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    River Highlands a 'breather' for Zach Johnson (63)

    By Will GrayJune 21, 2018, 6:43 pm

    CROMWELL, Conn. – After enduring the pressure-cooker of the U.S. Open, Zach Johnson was more than happy to drift north to the friendly confines of TPC River Highlands.

    Birdies were rare last week at Shinnecock Hills, but they’ll be plentiful all week long at the Travelers Championship. Browned-out and crispy conditions transitioned to lush and verdant, and players can attack flags without fear of turning a possible par into a struggle to avoid triple.

    Johnson did just that in the opening round, carding eight birdies against a single bogey to take the early lead with a 7-under 63.

    “It’s a different kind of breathing. It’s a different kind of exhaling, if you will, but they’re both good,” Johnson said. “You can put some red on the board here. We know that. We’ve seen it. You can go the other way in a hurry if you press it; it can keep going in the other way. So you kind of have to let it happen. This is one of those courses where you have to let it happen.”


    Full-field scores from the Travelers Championship

    Travelers Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    Like many in this week’s field, Johnson took it easy after a grueling major championship, staying away from the course Monday and easing into his prep over the next two days. Those decisions paid off quickly as he rattled off six straight birdies on Nos. 11-16 to take sole possession of the lead.

    While Johnson tied for 12th last week at Shinnecock Hills, that was just his second top-15 finish since the Sony Open in January. But the veteran is no stranger to fast starts at TPC River Highlands, having now opened with 65 or better four times in his last eight appearances dating back to 2011.

    It’s a course where he continues to have success, even if his past consistency hasn’t lived up to expectations.

    “I feel like every time I get here it feels like I should shoot nothing, and it bites me,” Johnson said. “The last couple years I’m like, ‘All right, you can’t have any expectations in that regard. You’ve just got to go out and execute, you know, put the ball in the fairway and you will have opportunities.’” 

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    First photos from Norman's 'Body' shoot

    By Grill Room TeamJune 21, 2018, 6:35 pm

    It was revealed earlier this week that Greg Norman would be one of the athletes showcased in ESPN's "Body Issue," which features the models stategically posed in the nude.

    Well, the first photos are out from Norman's shoot and ... here they are, if you want them.