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Backspin Aussie Rules Ol Monty

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Editor's Note: In Backspin, the editorial staff takes a look back on the biggest stories from the past week in golf -- with a spin.

GREAT SCOT!: Colin Montgomerie teamed up with fellow countyman Marc Warren to bring the World Cup of Golf home to Scotland, the country's first. Monty and Co. defeated the American duo of Boo Weekley and Heath Slocum, who carried a one stroke lead going into the final day. It was Montgomerie who secured the win with a tap-in for par on the third extra hole.
Backspin Monty did what Monty does best - win team-format tournaments. Surprisingly though, this was the first win for Scotland, the birthplace of the golf. On the other side, the Americans played better than expected and as Weekley put it, 'We weren't even supposed to be here and that's even a bonus.'

THE SKINNY: The 25th annual Skins Game was held over the weekend and Stephen Ames rolled in a 7-foot birdie putt on the final hole to collect eight skins worth $650,000. It was his second straight Skins Game title.
Backspin The Skins Game, which originally featured the names Nicklaus, Palmer, Player and Watson - who between them had a combined total of 55 major championships, has certainly lost a bit of its lusters through the years. Although Freddie can still bring in some fans, the names Wetterich, Johnson and Ames don't exactly bring in the viewers. Nevertheless, it's a format almost all recreational golfers play and can relate to and offered a diversion from wall-to-wall football.

AUSSIE RULES!: Aaron Baddeley got his first Australian Mastercard Masters title after a four-hole playoff thriller against Sweden's Daniel Chopra. The 26-year-old Aussie had the opportunity to seal victory with an eight-foot birdie putt when the two played the par-4 18th for the fourth playoff hole. However, Baddeley missed the chance and had to wait for Chopra's par putt attempt to slide just by the cup to claim the championship.
Backspin A player would always rather win by making a putt instead of having his opponent miss one, but Baddeley certainly isn't going to give back the trophy. Fellow Aussies Stuart Appleby, Peter O'Malley, Rod Pampling and Robert Allenby all finished inside the top-10 in what was a solid showing by the home country contigent. G'day mates!

THE WEEKLEY NEWS: Although Weekley and his partner didn't win the World Cup, sportwriters and American golf fans were still treated to a solid week from the man from Milton, Fla. He would have easily won the World Cup if birdies were awarded for all of his off-beat quotes during the week.
Backspin Weekley in a press conference is quickly becoming must see TV. Here's a gem from this past week in China - 'I think I was up in a tree deer hunting when I got the call. I was teary-eyed because it was awesome.' If Steve Stricker or David Toms would have said that, it wouldn't be funny. But when it spills out of Boo's mouth it's quite entertaining.

THE GREAT ONE: The Nationwide Tour announced this past week the formation of a new tournament on the 2008 schedule in which Wayne Gretzky will serve as host. The Ford Wayne Gretzky Classic will be held June 23-29 at The Georgian Bay Club and the Raven Golf Club at Lora Bay, located about a 100 miles northwest of Toronto.
Backspin Aahhh, the Great One. In Canada no less. Even more fun than just Gretzky's name being associated with the event, the Great One will actually be playing in the tournament, as the format calls for 160 Nationwide Tour players being paired with 160 celebrities/amateurs. But it begs the question - just what do you have to accomplish in order to host a PGA TOUR event? I guess four Stanley Cups titles, nine MVP awards and 10 scoring titles doesn't quite make the cut.

ALL GREEN IN THE DUBAI DESERT: The European Tour this week made known their plans to create a season-ending 'Race to Dubai,' in which the top 60 players on the Order of Merit will play for part of a $10 million pool. The 'Race to Dubai' will finish with the newly formed The Dubai World Championship, which will feature the largest purse in all of golf.
Backspin The European Tour seems to have no boundries, or at least they do not adhere to the philosophy of less is more. In addition to playing 51 out of 52 weeks of the year, the tour has now decided to take a page from the PGA TOUR and try to create a little excitement to close out their season. It will certainly be interesting to see what kind of fields they will be able to attract seeing as the 'Race to Dubai' will be coming off the heels of the month-long FedExCup.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Greg Norman's lawyers have filed a lawsuit against his former wife, alleging she has breached a part of their divorce settlement; In a Golf Digest interview out this month, Hollywood legend Jack Nicholson admits to using a foot wedge to escape trouble.
Backspin It's a flat out shame when all the news golf fans hear about Greg Norman these days is about his on-going divorce problems; Not surprising to learn that Jack might bend the rules a bit on the course - just look at some of the characters he's played during his long career on the silver screen.

Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - World Cup
  • Full Coverage - The Skins Game
  • More Headlines