Sorenstams final major on the horizon

By Lpga Tour MediaJuly 29, 2008, 4:00 pm
Ricoh WomenSUNNINGDALE, England ' When it came time to say she was leaving golf, Annika Sorenstam confided in Tiger Woods.
I told him what my plans are, what Im going to do and he said, Im happy youre at peace with your decision. I wish you all the best, she said Tuesday. He did tell me that I beat him to this and I said, Well this is the only thing I beat you at.
Sorenstam, speaking before her final major at the Womens British Open, will be retiring from competitive golf at the end of the season. Woods is laid up for the rest of the year with a knee injury.
Hes kind of stepped away already, the Swede said. I have five more months.
Fully recovered from her long-term back injury, Sorenstam has won three titles this season, has twice been runner-up and has also finished third and fourth. Hardly the results of someone who is quitting.
Sorenstam refuses to use the word retirement, although she insists she has no plans to return.
No, the door is not closed and thats why I dont use the r word, she said. I said Im stepping away and all of my sponsors are staying with me. Maybe they are hoping that Im going to come back.
But Sorenstam says she has lost the motivation that made her the most successful player in womens golf from the mid-1990s until the emergence last year of Mexicos Lorena Ochoa.
This is not something I thought off during a little coffee break, Sorenstam said. It wasnt one particular day or one particular moment. I think its been coming on for a little while and I felt this winter that it was very obvious that my focus wasnt there.
The motivation wasnt there and it was very hard to set up goals. Its very hard to wake up every day and go to every tournament and put pressure on yourself every single day. Thats very hard.
Sorenstam hopes to make it her 11th and final major title Sunday.
My expectations are always high, said Sorenstam, who has won this event once. I believe in myself and I know I can play this golf course but the competition is tough. I am going to try and stay competitive as much as possible. If I could win it this week I could say I have achieved everything I possible can.
Sponsors, caddies and fans have tried to persuade her not to quit but no players have.
I havent been that emotional, she said. There have been a few tournaments where I have choked up coming down the stretch. But if you feel content about something and you know its the right reason, I dont really get that emotional.'
Sorenstam is engaged and looking to start a family at age 37. She also wants to develop her own academy, golf foundation and clothing lines. Hosting events are in her plans as well.
I am a very competitive person, she said. Coming down the stretch to make birdie to force a playoff or holing a putt to win, theres a special adrenalin that pumps. I will miss that. I will miss the friends and some of the courses. But Im planning on taking my competitive drive into the business world. I think I am going to need it.
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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.