The Week in Golf News 1226 - 1229

By Golf Channel NewsroomDecember 29, 2000, 5:00 pm
Tuesday - Dec. 26, 2000
 
Ladies European Tour Cancels Season-Opener

 
The Ladies European Tour announced it has been forced to cancel its season-opener. The Cloud 9 New Zealand Women's Golf Classic is being dropped because its promoter failed to provide the sufficient funds. LET Chief Executive Tim Howland said without the funds they had no choice but to cancel the event.
 
The tournament was scheduled to take place at the Hutt Golf Course in Wellington beginning Feb. 22.
 

 
Wednesday - Dec. 27, 2000
 
First Round Matches Set Down Under

 
Just a week shy of the start of the Accenture Match Play Championship in Australia, the field and the first round pairings have been set. Only four of the world's top-10 will make the trip down under - top seed Ernie Els, Hal Sutton, Vijay Singh and Tom Lehman.
 
Els will face world No. 102 Kevin Sutherland in the first round. Sutherland finished 66th on the 2000 PGA Tour money list notching 4 top-10's in 27 starts. His career best finish was 2nd at the 1997 Shell Houston Open, losing in a playoff to Phil Blackmar.
 
Here are the first round matches for the 64-man field:
 
Upper Bracket
 
Ernie Els (1) vs. Kevin Sutherland (64)
Franklin Langham (32) vs. Hidemichi Tanaka (33)
Robert Allenby (16) vs. Steve Lowery (49)
Duffy Waldorf (17) vs. Skip Kendall (48)
Justin Leonard (8) vs. Hirofumi Miyase (57)
Phillip Price (25) vs. Paul McGinley (40)
John Huston (9) vs. Steve Stricker (56)
Scott Verplank (24) vs. Craig Parry (41)
Tom Lehman (4) vs. Mark McNulty (61)
Toshi Izawa (29) vs. Bob Estes (36)
Kirk Triplett (13) vs. Kenny Perry (52)
Steve Flesch (20) vs. Fred Funk (45)
Michael Campbell (5) vs. Jarmo Sandelin (60)
Paul Lawrie (28) vs. Jeff Sluman (37)
Bob May (12) vs. Jonathan Kaye (53)
Jose Coceres (21) vs. Scott Dunlap (44)
 
Lower Bracket
 
Hal Sutton (2) vs. Greg Chalmers (63)
Toru Taniguchi (31) vs. Bernhard Langer (34)
Stuart Appleby (15) vs. Jean Van de Velde (50)
Retief Goosen (18) vs. Per-Ulrik Johansson (47)
Stewart Cink (7) vs. Craig Stadler (58)
Dennis Paulson (26) vs. Chris DiMarco (39)
David Toms (10) vs. Tom Scherrer (55)
Shigeki Maruyama (23) vs. Andrew Coltart (42)
Vijay Singh (3) vs. Mathias Gronberg (62)
Joe Ozaki (30) vs. Tim Herron (35)
Chris Perry (14) vs. Nobuhito Sato (51)
Dudley Hart (19) vs. Brad Faxon (46)
Jim Furyk (6) vs. Patrik Sjoland (59)
Gary Orr (27) vs. Steve Pate (38)
Padraig Harrington (11) vs. Glen Day (54)
Pierre Fulke (22) vs. Brent Geiberger (43)
 
The $5 million events pays $1 million to the winner. Last year Darren Clarke took home the top prize after beating Tiger Woods in the 36-hole final. Clarke will not defend his title, choosing instead to stay at home with his family.
 

Woods Repeats as AP's Top Male Athlete
 

Tiger Woods won his second consecutive Male Athlete of the Year Award from The Associated Press on Tuesday. Woods joins NBA great Michael Jordan as the only three-time winner of the award.
 
Tiger received 47 first-place votes and 160 total points to best Lance Armstrong who was his second straight Tour de France this year. Armstrong had eight first-place votes and 72 points, while St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner received 34 points to place third.
 
The award was voted on by sportswriters and broadcasters with points awarded on a 3-2-1 basis.
 
Woods becomes the sixth player to win the award in consecutive years. He joins an exclusive list alongside tennis player Don Budge, Byron Nelson, track star Carl Lewis, NFL Hall of Famer Joe Montana and Jordan, who won his three awards consecutively.
 
Pedro Martinez, Shaquille O'Neal, Rulon Gardner, Jason Giambi, Derek Jeter, Josh Heupel and Marshall Faulk rounded out the top-10.
 
Do you think Tiger can improve in 2001?
Share your thoughts!
 

Nicklaus Won't Consider Four Straight Majors a Grand Slam
 
18-time professional major champion Jack Nicklaus doesn't think it should be considered the Grand Slam if Tiger Woods wins his fourth consecutive major at the Masters in April.
 
'It would have to be in one year,' Nicklaus said. 'But that would be fantastic.'
 
A win at Augusta would make Tiger the first ever to hold all four major titles at once. Woods won the U.S. Open, British Open and PGA Championship in 2000.
 
Nicklaus had a chance to hold all four titles after winning the 1971 PGA Championship, then the 1972 Masters and U.S. Open. He missed out on the feat when he lost by a single shot to Lee Trevino at the '72 British Open.
 
'I remember the year I held three at one time going into the British Open in '72, but nobody ever mentioned that,' he said.
 
Do you think four straight should be a Grand Slam?
Share your thoughts!
 

 
Futures Tour Announces Purse Increases
 
Continuing a trend in the golf world, the SBC Futures Tour announced an increase in total purses for 2001 to over $1.2 million. The official developmental tour for the LPGA will include 20 events in 15 states.
 
Nine events have increased their purses by at least $10,000 from the 2000 season. The average purse is $61,250, an increase of $6,000 from a year ago. The Futures Tour's 21st season will also include new events in Denver, Colo. and Wichita, Kan., both worth $60,000 in prize money.
 
The season begins in California in early March with the Pacific Bell Futures Classic in Moreno Valley. It continues through the season-ending $75,000 SBC Futures Tour Championship at The Club at Eaglebrooke in Lakeland, Fla.
 
'Our goal is to develop a schedule that is consistent with our mission and objectives, to provide women professional golfers with the opportunity to compete under similar demands as they will on the LPGA,' said Zayra F. Calderon, president of the Futures Tour.
 
The top three money winners after the second-to-last event of the season receive automatic exemptions to the 2002 LPGA Tour. The rest of the top ten are exempted to the final stage of LPGA qualifying.
 

 
Thursday - Dec. 28, 2000
 
O'Hern In, Sandelin Out at Accenture Match Play

 
Jarmo Sandelin joined the list of players not making the trip to Australia for next week's WGC - Accenture Match Play Championship. Sandelin will be replaced by Australian Nick O'Hern who is ranked No. 103 in the world.
 
According to the PGA Tour, Sandelin, who was seeded 60th, will stay at home to be with his long-time girlfriend Linda who is expecting their first child.
 
The news is both good and bad for the 29 year-old O'Hern, as he will be seeded 64th and have to face top seed Ernie Els in the first round.
 
Sandelin's withdrawal shifts the players seeded 60th through 64th. Here are the most recent first round match-ups:
 
Upper Bracket
 
Ernie Els (1) vs. Nick O'Hern (64)
Franklin Langham (32) vs. Hidemichi Tanaka (33)
Robert Allenby (16) vs. Steve Lowery (49)
Duffy Waldorf (17) vs. Skip Kendall (48)
Justin Leonard (8) vs. Hirofumi Miyase (57)
Phillip Price (25) vs. Paul McGinley (40)
John Huston (9) vs. Steve Stricker (56)
Scott Verplank (24) vs. Craig Parry (41)
Tom Lehman (4) vs. Mathias Gronberg (61)
Toshi Izawa (29) vs. Bob Estes (36)
Kirk Triplett (13) vs. Kenny Perry (52)
Steve Flesch (20) vs. Fred Funk (45)
Michael Campbell (5) vs. Mark McNulty (60)
Paul Lawrie (28) vs. Jeff Sluman (37)
Bob May (12) vs. Jonathan Kaye (53)
Jose Coceres (21) vs. Scott Dunlap (44)
 
Lower Bracket
 
Hal Sutton (2) vs. Kevin Sutherland (63)
Toru Taniguchi (31) vs. Bernhard Langer (34)
Stuart Appleby (15) vs. Jean Van de Velde (50)
Retief Goosen (18) vs. Per-Ulrik Johansson (47)
Stewart Cink (7) vs. Craig Stadler (58)
Dennis Paulson (26) vs. Chris DiMarco (39)
David Toms (10) vs. Tom Scherrer (55)
Shigeki Maruyama (23) vs. Andrew Coltart (42)
Vijay Singh (3) vs. Greg Chalmers (62)
Joe Ozaki (30) vs. Tim Herron (35)
Chris Perry (14) vs. Nobuhito Sato (51)
Dudley Hart (19) vs. Brad Faxon (46)
Jim Furyk (6) vs. Patrik Sjoland (59)
Gary Orr (27) vs. Steve Pate (38)
Padraig Harrington (11) vs. Glen Day (54)
Pierre Fulke (22) vs. Brent Geiberger (43)
 
An alternate will replace any more players who withdraw before Monday. Next on that list are Greg Kraft and Peter O'Malley. If a player withdraws after that his place will not be filled and his opponent will receive a bye.
 
First round matches begin Wednesday, Jan. 3rd at the Metropolitan Golf Club in Melbourne, Australia.
 

 
Friday - Dec. 29, 2000
 
Furyk Becomes 40th Player Not Going Down Under

 
The hits just keep on coming for next week's Accenture World Match Play. World No.15 Jim Furyk has withdrawn bringing the total of eligible players not playing to 40. Furyk was the No. 6 seed.
 
Greg Kraft replaces Furyk becoming the latest alternate to slide into the 64-man event to be held at the Metropolitan Golf Club in Melbourne, Australia. Australian Peter O'Malley is the next alternate on the list.
 
The official draw will be released Monday at 5pm Australian time. Any withdrawals after that will not be replaced giving their first round opponent a bye.
 
The rash of no-shows has been blamed on the early January date of the tournament. Only four of the top-10 in the world are in the field, led by No.2 Ernie Els. Els will now face Kraft in the first round barring any more withdrawals.
 
Swede Jarmo Sandelin withdrew Thursday to witness the birth of his first child, letting Aussie Nick O'Hern into the mix.
 
Here is the latest look at the constantly changing first round draw:
 
Upper Bracket
 
Ernie Els (1) vs. Greg Kraft (64)
Hidemichi Tanaka (31) vs. Bernhard Langer (33)
Duffy Waldorf (16) vs. Jean Van De Velde (49)
Retief Goosen (17) vs. Steve Lowery (48)
John Huston (8)vs. Craig Stadler (57)
Dennis Paulson (25)vs. Craig Parry (40)
David Toms (9)vs. Hirofumi Miyase (56)
Phillip Price (24)vs. Andrew Coltart (41)
Tom Lehman (4)vs. Greg Chalmers (61)
Joe Ozaki (29)vs. Jeff Sluman (36)
Chris Perry (13)vs. Jonathan Kaye (52)
Jose Coceres (20)vs. Brad Faxon (45)
Michael Campbell (5)vs. Mathias Gronberg (60)
Toshi Izawa (28)vs. Steve Pate (37)
Kirk Triplett (12)vs.Glen Day (53)
Pierre Fulke (21)vs. Fred Funk (44)
 
Lower Bracket
 
Hal Sutton (2)vs. Nick O'Hern (63)
Franklin Langham (31)vs. Tim Herron (34)
Robert Allenby (15)vs. Nobuhito Sato (50)
Dudley Hart (18)vs. Skip Kendall (47)
Justin Leonard (7)vs. Patrik Sjoland (58)
Gary Orr (26)vs. Paul McGinley (39)
Padraig Harrington (10)vs. Steve Stricker (55)
Scott Verplank (23)vs. Brent Geiberger (42)
Vijay Singh (3)vs. Kevin Sutherland (62)
Toru Taniguchi (30)vs. Bob Estes (35)
Stuart Appleby (14)vs.Kenny Perry (51)
Steve Flesch (19)vs. Per-Ulrik Johansson (46)
Stewart Cink (6)vs. Mark McNulty (59)
Paul Lawrie (27)vs. Chris DiMarco (38)
Bob May (11)vs. Tom Scherrer (54)
Shigeki Maruyama (22)vs. Scott Dunlap (43)
 

Clarke to Miss Mercedes
 
Darren Clarke will skip the Mercedes Championships to spend time with his family. The announcement comes on the heels of his decision not to defend his title at next week's Accenture Match Play Championship in Melbourne, Australia.
 
Clarke will make his 2001 debut with a pair of events in South Africa. He will play the South African Open at the end of January and the Dimension Data Pro-am at Sun City the following week.
 

Weir Named Canada's Top Male Athlete
 
Mike Weir has received the Lionel Conacher Award given to Canada's top male athlete. Weir beat out Olympians Simon Whitfield and Daniel Igali, as well as NHL players Chris Pronger and Steve Nash.
 
Weir finished sixth on the 2000 PGA Tour money list with over $2.5 million and won the season-ending WGC - American Express Invitational. Weir also had an impressive showing at the Presidents Cup where he made his first appearance for the International squad.
 
Weir becomes the first golfer to win the award since Sandy Somerville in 1932. Somerville won the U.S. Amateur that year, the first time a foreigner had won the title.
 
Voting was conducted by The Canadian Press and Broadcast News.
 

Webb finishes Third in AP Female Athlete of the Year
 
LPGA superstar Karrie Webb finished 3rd in voting for the 2000 AP Female Athlete of the Year. Webb finished behind track star Marion Jones (1st) and tennis star Venus Williams (2nd.)
 
Webb finished with four first-place votes and 30 points. Jones received 27 first-place votes and 112 overall points.
 
Webb won seven times on the 2000 LPGA Tour and won $1.87 million to lead the money list.
 
Juli Inkster received a pair of first-place votes and finished 11th in the balloting. Annika Sorenstam finished tied for 18th.
 
Votes were cast by sports writers and broadcasters, based on a 3-2-1 point system.
Getty Images

(Not that) Jutanugarn shares lead with (not that) Ko

By Associated PressApril 22, 2018, 1:58 am

LOS ANGELES - A player eager for her first win and a rookie top the leaderboard at the HUGEL-JTBC LA Open. Lurking two shots back is a Hall of Famer.

Winless Moriya Jutanugarn overcame a poor start and birdied the 18th for a hard-earned 1-under 70 to tie rookie Jin Young Ko at 9 under on Saturday at Wilshire Country Club.

Ko shot a 66 in her bid to become the year's first two-time LPGA winner. She won the Women's Australian Open in February, her first victory as an official tour member after a successful run on the Korean LPGA circuit.

''I'm ready for win or top 10, so maybe tomorrow I will really focus on shot by shot,'' said Ko, who added an exclamation point to her golf bag for each of her wins on the KLPGA. ''I won 11 times, so if I win tomorrow, maybe I change to 12. I need more, I need every time motivation.''

Jutanugarn is trying to match younger sister Ariya as a tour champion. Seven-time winner Ariya was tied for 27th after a 72 in the third round.

Usually when one of the Thai sisters is in the lead, the other will watch when her round is finished.

''If she's not too lazy, she is probably going to come out,'' Moriya said about Ariya.

Playing in an all-Korean threesome, Hall of Famer Inbee Park was two shots back in third after a 69. Her birdie putt for a share of the lead on 18 slid just by the hole. The group drew a large contingent of Korean fans.


Full-field scores from the Hugel-JTBC Open


''I kind of started off a little bad. I was able to come back strong, so I'm really happy with that,'' Park said. ''I left a few putts out there. The greens around this golf course are just really tough. You just don't know what's going to happen.''

Moriya Jutanugarn's round included a double bogey on the par-4 first hole and a bogey on the par-4 sixth. She eagled the par-4 14th after holing out from the fairway 93 feet away. The ball took once bounce and went in, eliciting a stunned look from Jutanugarn before she high-fived her caddie.

''Today was kind of a pretty rough day for me with not a very good start and like trying to come back,'' Jutanugarn said. ''I just try to play my game and be patient out there I think is the key.''

Jutanugarn, the second-round leader, read the break perfectly on a long putt to make birdie on 18 and share the lead with Ko.

Playing two groups ahead of Jutanugarn, Caroline Inglis also eagled the 14th from 180 yards. She briefly jumped up and down and smiled after three bogeys and a double bogey. She shot a 69 and was four shots back in a tie for sixth with Minjee Lee.

''It was like one bounce and then it like trickled in,'' Inglis said.

Aditi Ashok eagled 14 early in the round.

Ko did some scrambling of her own. Her ball found a sandy hazard on the 17th with a scoreboard and a winding creek in between her and the green 190 yards away. Her approach landed just off the green and she made par. Her round included six birdies and a bogey on 16.

Eun-Hee Ji (70) and American Marina Alex (72) were tied for fourth at 6 under.

Top-ranked Shanshan Feng shot a 70 and was in a six-way tie for 12th at 2 under.

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Defending champs Singh, Franco take senior lead

By Associated PressApril 22, 2018, 12:15 am

RIDGEDALE, Mo. - Defending champions Vijay Singh and Carlos Franco took the third-round lead Saturday in the windy Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf.

Singh and Franco shot a 7-under 47 in wind gusting to 20 mph on the Top of the Rock par-3 course to get to 19-under 145, a stroke ahead of the teams of David Toms-Steve Flesch and Paul Broadhurst-Kirk Triplett.

''It was a tough day,'' Singh said. ''The wind was swirling, have to get the club right and we made some putts. Carlos played really well on the back nine and I played really well on the front nine, so we ham-and-egged it a little.''

Toms and Flesch also shot 47, and Broadhurst and Triplett had a 33 on the 13-hole Mountain Top par-3 course.

''We just paired well together,'' Toms said. ''I don't think either one of us played great. We picked each other up out there.''

Wind and rain is expected Sunday when the teams finish at Top of the Rock, again playing the front nine in alternate shot and the back nine in better ball.

''Make as many birdies as possible and see what happens,'' Singh said. ''That's all we can do.''

Singh and Franco are trying to become the first to successfully defend a title since Jim Colbert and Andy North in 2001. Singh won the Toshiba Classic in March for his first individual senior title.


Full-field scores from the Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf


Flesch won the Mitsubishi Electric Classic last week in Georgia for his first senior victory.

Tom Lehman and Bernhard Langer had a 34 at Mountain Top to join Spanish stars Miguel Angel Jimenez and Jose Maria Olazabal at 17 under. Jimenez and Olazabal had a 33 at Mountain Top.

''It's great for me to be able to play with him as a team member,'' Olazabal said. ''We do have great memories from the Ryder Cup and other events, and it's always a great pleasure to play with a great player and a friend.''

Langer took the final-round forecast in stride.

''We've done it hundreds of times before and we'll probably do it again,'' Langer said. ''We'll make the best of it. We both have a good attitude. We're known to play in all sorts of weather and I just look forward to playing one more day with my partner here.''

Wisconsin neighbors Steve Stricker and Jerry Kelly were 16 under after a 48 at Top of the Rock.

John Daly and Michael Allen, the second-round leaders after a 46 at Top of the Rock, had a 37 at Mountain Top to drop into a tie for seventh at 15 under.

Getty Images

Landry shares Valero lead, eyes first career win

By Will GrayApril 21, 2018, 11:15 pm

After coming up just short of a breakthrough win earlier this season, Andrew Landry has another chance to earn his maiden victory at the Valero Texas Open.

Landry came within inches of winning the CareerBuilder Challenge in January, ultimately losing to Jon Rahm in a four-hole playoff. He struggled to find form in the wake of his close call, missing the cut in each of his four starts following his runner-up finish in Palm Springs.

But Landry took some time off to welcome his first child, Brooks, last month and he made it to the weekend in his first start back last week at the RBC Heritage, where he finished T-42. He made a move up the standings Saturday at TPC San Antonio with a bogey-free 67, and at 13 under shares the lead with Zach Johnson heading into the final round.

"I just did everything really good," Landry told reporters. "I was staying patient and just trying to make a bunch of pars. This golf course can come up and bite you in a heartbeat, and I had a couple bad putts that I didn't really make. I'm happy with it, it's a good 5-under round. Gets me in the final group tomorrow and we'll see what happens."


Full-field scores from the Valero Texas Open

Valero Texas Open: Articles, photos and videos


Landry started the day one shot off the pace and in the final group with Johnson and Ryan Moore, and at one point he took sole possession of the lead after birdies on three of his first six holes. Now he'll have another chance in the day's final tee time where he's grouped with Johnson and Trey Mullinax, who sits one shot back after firing a course-record 62 in the third round.

For Landry, it's another opportunity to break into the winner's circle, and it's one for which he feels prepared after coming so close three months ago.

"I mean, I don't want to go too deep into it because I don't want to sound cocky or anything, but I just believe in myself. There's no other explanation for it," Landry said. "You can totally get out here and play with Zach Johnson, Ryan Moore, two top players in the world, and you can go out there and fold under pressure or you can learn a lot.

"Zach's always been a role model to me the way he plays golf, I feel like we have very similar games, and it's just going to be fun tomorrow getting to play with him again."

Getty Images

Z. Johnson, Landry share 54-hole Texas Open lead

By Associated PressApril 21, 2018, 10:56 pm

SAN ANTONIO - Zach Johnson birdied the par-5 18th Saturday at the Valero Texas Open for a share of the third-round lead with Andrew Landry, a stroke ahead of record-setting Trey Mullinax.

Johnson shot a 4-under 68, holing a 10-footer on 18 to match Landry at 13-under 203 at TPC San Antonio's AT&T Oaks. Landry birdied the 16th and 17th in a 67.

Johnson won the event in 2008 and 2009, the last two times it was played at LaCantera. The 42-year-old Iowan is trying to win for the first time since the 2015 British Open.

''I've got 18 holes to get to that point,'' Johnson said. ''I've got to do exactly what I did on the back side and that was give myself opportunities on every hole. I'm putting great, I'm seeing the lines well, my caddie's reading the greens well, so it's just a matter of committing and executing down the stretch.''

The 30-year-old Landry is winless on the tour.

''I'm a good putter and I just need to give myself a lot of opportunities tomorrow like I did today,'' Landry said. ''I'll be looking forward to tomorrow.''

Mullinax had a course-record 62. He played the back nine in 7-under 29, going 6 under on the last five with eagles on the par-5 14th and 18th and birdies on 16 and 17. He also birdied Nos. 10 and 12 and bogeyed 11.

''It's probably one of the best rounds I've ever had,'' Mullinax said. ''To go out there and shoot 62 on a hard golf course is really good.''

Johnson played the front nine in even par with two birdies and two bogeys. He birdied Nos. 11, 14, 15 and 18 on the back nine.


Full-field scores from the Valero Texas Open

Valero Texas Open: Articles, photos and videos


''Different wind today early on, misjudged some numbers, misjudged some wind, made some bad swings, all of the above,'' Johnson said. ''But truthfully, my short game was actually pretty good, my putting was great. I missed some putts, but I hit some really good ones, hit some lines and I gave myself opportunities especially on the back side.''

Landry had a bogey-free round.

''I just did everything really good,'' Landry said. ''I was staying patient and just trying to make a bunch of pars. This golf course can come up and bite you in a heartbeat.''

Ryan Moore was two strokes back at 11 under after a 70. Sean O'Hair had a 65 to join 2015 champion Jimmy Walker (67), Chris Kirk (68) and 2013 winner Martin Laird (69) at 9 under.

''I just feel like I'm getting closer and closer to playing better and better golf, more solid golf, putting rounds together,'' Walker said. ''I'm excited for the opportunity tomorrow.''

Mullinax has made 42 of 44 putts from inside 10 feet this week.

''They just kind of remind me of greens from home,'' Mullinax said. ''My caddie, David (Flynn), has been reading them really well. We trusted each other on our reads and I've been hitting good putts. Been working hard on putting on the weeks off that I've had so it's good to see some results.''

The 25-year-old former Alabama player chipped in for the eagle on 14 and the birdie on the par-3 16th.

''It was just a little bit down the hill,'' he said about the 16th. ''All you had to do was just land it just past that little light grass spot. My caddie told me just read it like a putt, so I tried to just read it like a putt and it went in.''

On 18, he hit a 3-iron from 255 yards to 15 feet to set up his eagle putt. He broke the course record of 63 set by Matt Every in 201 and matched by Laird in 2013. The tournament record is 60 at LaCantera, by Bart Bryant in 2004 and Johnson in 2009.