Featured Match Mickelson vs Fowler

By Rex HoggardFebruary 24, 2011, 11:10 pm

2005 WGC Accenture Match PlayMARANA, Ariz. – GolfChannel.com senior writer Rex Hoggard is at the Ritz Carlton Golf Club at Dove Mountain for the second round of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. He is providing a running blog for the 12:46 p.m. ET match between (1) Phil Mickelson and (8) Rickie Fowler. For complete scoring of all 16 matches, click here.

(3:48 p.m. ET) As Rickie Fowler and Phil Mickelson approached the 13th green, the crowd began a chorus of 'USA, USA' chants, but we're not sure which American they were pulling for.

Had this been the Ryder Cup, the chant 'Ole, ole, ole' may have been more appropriate considering Fowler's 6-and-5 victory.

(3:45 p.m. ET) Rickie Fowler closed out Phil Mickelson at Dove Mountain's 13th hole, a 6-and-5 walkover that featured plenty of low scoring, all of it from Fowler.

'We only played four holes on the backside and he played them in 5 under,' Mickelson said. 'I got outplayed.'

(3:28 p.m. ET) A word on body language. Rickie Fowler walked off Dove Mountain's 12th hole looking like a man who was 6-under since the third hole and 5 up on his opponent.

Phil Mickelson on the other hand walked off the 12th looking like a man who just missed a 4-footer for birdie and would rather be anywhere else.

And that sums up the day's marquee match.

(3:16 p.m. ET) Rickie Fowler continues to hammer Phil Mickelson in Round 2 at the WGC-Match Play, rolling in a 12-footer for eagle at the 11th hole to go five holes ahead.

Can't help but think that this isn't exactly what PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem had in mind when he concocted this year's young-vs.-old theme.

(2:59 p.m. ET) Rickie Fowler chips in on the 10th hole to go 4 up on Phil Mickelson at Dove Mountain and we can't help but think that's not respecting your elders.

Really good golf, however.

(2:41 p.m. ET) In one of the all-time good moves, Phil Mickelson's caddie Jim Mackay gave Rickie Fowler's looper his seat on the U.S. Ryder Cup charter last year because Bones thought it was important for the rookie bagman to experience it.

Can't help but think it could create a little goodwill in the duo's second-round match at Dove Mountain, but no such luck.

Mickelson missed a 6-footer for birdie at the eighth hole and the fairway and green at the ninth hole to fall three holes down at the turn. 

(2:19 p.m. ET) Made it 40 holes at the WGC-Match Play before being run down by the jumping cholla. The devil's weed got your correspondent on the eight hole.

Can't say for certain but we thought we saw Phil Mickelson, who trails Rickie Fowler by a hole, laugh as he went by.

(1:50 p.m. ET) So much for the short-game clinic. Phil Mickelson hit his chip thin, albeit from a bad lie, at the fifth hole and failed to make par.

Fowler on the other hand calmly rolled in a 25 footer for birdie to go 1 up.

Advantage Gen Y.

(1:42 p.m. ET) Rickie Fowler, in bright pink, birdies the fourth at Dove Mountain to square his match with Phil Mickelson, who is sporting a bright orange shirt.

Get the feeling Ian Poulter is back in Orlando, Fla., throwing things at his TV.

(1:30 p.m. ET) It takes Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler nearly 40 minutes to play three holes at Dove Mountain.

You do the math, Fowler one of the fastest players on the PGA Tour is two groups behind Ben Crane who is one of the, well you know.

(1:25 p.m. ET) In what appears to be the short-game clinic of the day's matches at Dove Mountain, Phil Mickelson scrambles for par at the third hole, Rickie Fowler does not from an impossible lie short of the green.

Advantage Lefty (1 up).

(1:13 p.m. ET) It was Phil Mickelson at his short-game best at Dove Mountain's second hole on Thursday.

From short of the green Lefty bumps a chip into the bank for a conceded birdie. His opponent Rickie Fowler isn't too shabby either. He flops his third to 3 feet to keep the match all square.

(1:03 p.m. ET) Phil Mickelson quickly dismissed the idea when asked earlier this year at Torrey Pines if he planned to join the growing list of PGA Tour players who Tweet.
That makes his second-round match with Twitter diehard Rickie Fowler so interesting.
As one golf scribe joked as the two teed off on Wednesday at Dove Mountain, 'Rickie Tweets 'Go Time' and Phil would Tweet 'It's go to lunch time.''

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'The Golf Club 2019' adds Elvy to commentary team

By Nick MentaJuly 19, 2018, 4:45 pm

“The Golf Club 2019” is adding a new name to its commentary team.

Broadcaster Luke Elvy will join returning announcer and HB Studios developer John McCarthy for the title's third installment.

Golf fans will recognize Elvy from his recent work with CBS in addition to his time with Sky Sports, FOX Sports, TNT, PGA Tour Live and PGA Tour Radio.

A 25-year media veteran from Australia, he now works in the United States and lives with his family in Canada.

"Ian Baker-Finch was my right-hand man on Australian televison," Elvy told GolfChannel.com in an interview at the Quicken Loans National. "And Finchy said to me, 'What are you doing here? You should be with me in the States.’ He introduced me to a few people over here and that's how the transition has happened over the last five or six years."

Elvy didn't have any prior relationship with HB Studios, who reached out to him via his management at CAA. As for why he got the job, he pseudo-jokes: "They heard the accent, and said, 'We like that. That works for us. Let's go.' That's literally how it happened."

He participated in two separate recording sessions over three days, first at his home back in February and then at the HB Studios shortly after The Players Championship. He teased his involvement when the game was announced in May.

Although he doesn't describe himself as a "gamer," Elvy lauded the game's immediate playability, even for a novice.

“It’s exactly how you’d want golf to be,” he said.

"The Golf Club 2019" will be the first in the HB series to feature PGA Tour branding. The Tour had previously licensed its video game rights to EA Sports.

In addition to a career mode that will take players from the Web.com Tour all the way through the FedExCup Playoffs, "The Golf Club 2019" will also feature at launch replicas of six TPC courses played annually on Tour – TPC Summerlin (Shriners Hospitals for Children Open), TPC Scottsdale's Stadium Course (Waste Management Phoenix Open), TPC Sawgrass’ Stadium Course (The Players Championship), TPC Southwind (FedEx St. Jude Classic/WGC-FedEx St. Jude Championship), TPC Deere Run (John Deere Classic), and TPC Boston (Dell Technologies Championship).

“I played nine holes at Scottsdale,” Elvy added. “It’s a very close comparison. Visually, it’s very realistic."

The Golf Club 2019 is due out this August on PlayStation 4, XBOX One, and PC.

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Expired visa, helicopter, odd clubs all part of Vegas' journey

By Ryan LavnerJuly 19, 2018, 3:48 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Jhonattan Vegas thought someone was playing a practical joke on him.

Or maybe he was stuck in the middle of a horror movie.

Scheduled to leave for The Open a week ago, he didn’t arrive at Carnoustie until a little more than an hour before his first-round tee time Thursday.

“Even if somebody tried to do that on purpose,” he said, “you couldn’t really do it.”

The problem was an expired visa.

Vegas said that he must have gotten confused by the transposed date on the visa – “Guessing I’ve been living in America too long” – and assumed that he was cleared to travel.

No problem, he was told. He’d have a new visa in 24 hours.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Except the consulate in New York didn’t respond to his application the next day, keeping him in limbo through the weekend. Then, on Monday, he was told that he’d applied for the wrong visa. UPS got shut down in New York and his visa never left, so Vegas waited in vain for seven hours in front of the consulate in Houston. He finally secured his visa on Wednesday morning, boarded a flight from Houston to Toronto, and then flew to Glasgow, the final leg of a 14-hour journey.

His agent arranged a helicopter ride from Glasgow to Carnoustie to ensure that he could make his 10:31 a.m. (local) tee time.

One more issue? His clubs never made it. They were left back in Toronto.

His caddie, Ruben Yorio, scrambled to put together a new bag, with a mismatched set of woods, irons, wedges and putter.

“Luckily the (equipment) vans are still here,” Vegas said. “Otherwise I probably would have played with members’ clubs today.”

He hit about 20 balls on the range – “Luckily they were going forward” – but Carnoustie is one of the most challenging links in the world, and Vegas was working off of two hours’ sleep and without his own custom-built clubs. He shot 76 but, hey, at least he tried.

“It was fun,” he said, “even though the journey was frustrating.”

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'Brain fart' leads to Spieth's late collapse

By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:44 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – The closing stretch at Carnoustie has famously ruined many a solid round, so Jordan Spieth’s misadventures on Thursday should not have been a complete surprise, but the truth is the defending champion’s miscues were very much self-inflicted.

Spieth was cruising along at 3 under par, just two shots off the early lead, when he made a combination of errors at the par-4 15th hole. He hit the wrong club off the tee (4-iron) and the wrong club for his approach (6-iron) on his way to a double bogey-6.

“The problem was on the second shot, I should have hit enough club to reach the front of the green, and even if it goes 20 yards over the green, it's an easy up-and-down,” Spieth said. “I just had a brain fart, and I missed it into the location where the only pot bunker where I could actually get in trouble, and it plugged deep into it. It was a really, really poor decision on the second shot, and that cost me.”

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Spieth continued to compound his problems with a sloppy bogey at the 16th hole, and a drive that sailed left at 18 found the Barry Burn en route to a closing bogey and a 1-over 72.

The miscues were more mental, a lack of execution, than they were an example of how difficult the closing stretch at Carnoustie can be, and that’s not good enough for Spieth.

“That's what I would consider as a significant advantage for me is recognizing where the misses are,” said Spieth, who was tied for 68th when he completed his round. “It felt like a missed opportunity.”

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Perez: R&A does it right, 'not like the USGA'

By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:28 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Pat Perez didn’t even attempt to hide his frustration with the USGA at last month’s U.S. Open, and after an opening-round 69 at The Open, he took the opportunity to double down on his displeasure.

“They (the R&A) do it right, not like the USGA,” Perez said of the setup at Carnoustie. “They've got the opposite [philosophy] here. I told them, you guys have it right, let the course get baked, but you've got the greens receptive. They're not going to run and be out of control. They could have easily had the greens just like the fairway, but they didn't. The course is just set up perfect.”

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Concerns at Shinnecock Hills reached a crescendo on Saturday when the scoring average ballooned to 75.3 and only three players broke the par of 70. Of particular concern for many players, including Perez, were some of the hole locations, given how fast and firm the greens were.

“The U.S. Open could have been like this more if they wanted to. They could have made the greens a bit more receptive,” Perez said. “These greens are really flat compared to Shinnecock. So that was kind of the problem there is they let it get out of control and they made the greens too hard.”