Rose extends Abu Dhabi lead after 54 holes

By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2013, 12:58 pm

With both Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy no longer in the mix, Justin Rose continued his steady play, increasing his advantage to two shots heading into the final round of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.

Despite a bogey on his opening hole, the Englishman righted the ship with a stretch of five birdies in six holes to close his outward nine, ultimately carding a 4-under 68. Sitting at 12-under 204, he leads by two shots over Thorbjorn Olesen and first round co-leader Jamie Donaldson.

'Things went well the whole day, to be honest with you,' he said after the round. 'Every time I had the club in my hand, I felt like I was going to hit a good shot.'

Having tied for eighth in his first appearance at Abu Dhabi Golf Club last year, Olesen fired a bogey-free round of 3-under 69 for the second consecutive day, as the Dane has now dropped only a single shot through 54 holes. Donaldson, who seeks his first top-10 finish in his seventh Abu Dhabi appearance, made just one bogey Saturday en route to a round of 69 that matched Olesen's effort.

Thongchai Jaidee is alone in fourth place, three shots behind Rose after a 6-under 66 Saturday. Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano highlights the threesome one shot further back at 8 under after a 1-under 71, the only player currently in the top 10 who failed to break 70 in the third round.

A pair of former major winners entered Saturday's third round in contention, but were unable to make any significant movements on the field. Hoping to continue a career resurgence in 2013, former U.S. Open winner Michael Campbell is one of three players tied for seventh, five strokes back, after a 3-under 69 only saw him fall one shot further off the leader's pace. Martin Kaymer, the sole survivor of the tournament's marquee early-round pairing, carded a 2-under 70 Saturday and will begin the final round tied for 11th, still holding slim hopes of winning his fourth Abu Dhabi title since 2008.

They are all chasing Rose, however, who has now held a share of the lead after each round and is in prime position to begin his 2013 season on a high note. Sunday will mark the third time that the Englishman has taken a lead into the final round on the European Tour – most recently at the 2007 Volvo Masters – and he left Sunday with the trophy in hand on both prior occasions.

'It's a great opportunity, first tournament of the year to go out there and play with a lead,' he added. 'Those are situations that hopefully I'll put myself in a lot this year.'

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Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

“There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.

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In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

“To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

“To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.