Annika Sorenstam - February 16, 2012

By Morning Drive TeamFebruary 16, 2012, 1:11 pm

Phil Mickelson earned his 40th PGA TOUR win on Sunday at Pebble Beach with Tiger Woods in his pairing and Annika admitted that she was wrong in her earlier prediction that Phil would not have a good 2012. She was very impressed at well Phil played in the final round and noted that Phil and Tiger were polar opposite players on Sunday. It is a very good question about whether or not Phil has gotten into Tiger’s head. Tiger knows he can win but he is not winning and she thinks that Tiger may be trying too hard to win.

On the 18th hole on Sunday, Tiger lagged his first putt and then Phil did not offer him a chance to finish putting so instead, Tiger putted out after Phil had won the tournament. She is fine with what happened because it looked like that both players were focused although it is considered to be polite to allow the person who will not win to clear the way for the person who is going to win on the final green.

When asked about whether the 40 PGA TOUR wins or 4 Major wins are more significant, Annika – as someone who has both – said that it was no contest and the 4 Major Championship wins is absolutely the bigger accomplishment. While 40 PGA TOUR wins is a big deal, Annika doubts that people would be talking about Phil as much if he had not won those 4 Majors.

The LPGA Tour season is underway and Jessica Korda won in a 6-way playoff to claim the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open. The playoff was conducted by splitting the six into two groups of three and Annika disagreed with that decision. She feels that it is better to have all six players together in one group and even though it may take more time, it would be more exciting to watch. As a player, when you are in a playoff you look at your opponent or opponents and it matters to be able to see your opponent on a mental and psychological level.

She has given the offer of the 2013 European Solheim Cup Captaincy a lot of thought, and she has decided to pass on that offer. She was very flattered to be asked but the fact is she is not in a position in her life to take on all of the responsibilities that a Captain needs to take on. She has offered to help the team in other ways but she cannot be the Captain and it is now up to the Ladies European Tour to pick another Captain. Alison Nicholas put her heart and soul into the job so she thinks that the 2013 Captain will be someone else and Annika is interested to see who it will be. Originally, she said that her decision would be based on the Olympic Course Designer announcement and when the announcement was delayed one month, she knew that the Ladies European Tour could not delay their decision as well so she went ahead and told them that she could not be Captain. Annika added that despite her great record in the Solheim Cup, she is not wired to be Captain in the way that other players are. She does not know if she would be an Assistant Captain again but she can see herself helping the team in an unofficial role.

Natalie Gulbis has posed in body paint for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue this year and Annika supports the decision. Natalie looked beautiful in both the video and the pictures and she works very hard to keep her body in shape. Also, the photo shoot was tastefully done. This was simply displaying an athlete and the fact that it was not done on a golf course makes it inoffensive to the game of golf. Gulbis is in Thailand this week and she has texted with her and Natalie’s main focus right now is trying to add to her one LPGA Tour win. Annika has done a number of photo shoots for magazines including Sports Illustrated and ESPN: The Magazine and she feels that those were tastefully done and she has rejected offers that she did not feel would be tastefully done. This is an example of an effort to try to promote the game of golf to other audiences and is no different than an LPGA player doing an interview with a cooking magazine or a home magazine.

Getty Images

Watch: Full replays of The Open coverage

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 12:55 pm

NBC Sports and Golf Channel are showcasing nearly 50 hours of live coverage of the 147th Open. Missed anything? Well, you can catch up right here. Click on the links below for replays from Carnoustie, broken down into daily segments:

Friday, Day 2 (Times ET)

1:30-8:20AM (Watch): On a rainy Friday morning at Carnoustie, Rory McIlroy shot 69 to reach 4 under, while Zach Johnson fired a 67 for the early lead. Click here or on the image below to watch.


Thursday, Day 1 (Times ET)

Noon-4PM (Watch): Tiger Woods was up and down in the afternoon, as winds picked up a little and no one could catch Kevin Kisner. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Woods, Russell Knox and Hideki Matsuyama.

1:30-8:25AM (Watch): Defending champion Jordan Spieth got off to a good start, while Kevin Kisner (66) set the early pace. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and Chris Wood.

Getty Images

Fleetwood, with his fancy umbrella, fires 65 on Day 2

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 12:34 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tommy Fleetwood looked like an Open rookie when he set out on Friday under gray skies and a cold, steady rain.

Because the Englishman doesn’t have an equipment sponsor he made a quick turn through the merchandise tent for an umbrella – but at least he didn’t have to pay for it.

“We stole it,” he laughed when asked about his Open-brand umbrella. “We got one given for free, actually. We didn't steal it. We don't always carry an umbrella. So it just so happens this week that we've got a nice Open Championship [umbrella]. It looked quite nice, the yellow and the course.”


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


It was Fleetwood’s only rookie move on Day 2 at Carnoustie, posting a flawless 65 to move into an early tie for second place at 5 under par.

Fleetwood holds the competitive course record at Carnoustie, a 9-under 63 he shot last fall during the European Tour’s Dunhill Links Championship, but given Friday’s conditions and the difficulty of this course during The Open, his 65 on Friday might have been better.

“It's not a course record, but it's pretty good,” said Fleetwood, who was stroke behind leader Zach Johnson. “If you went out, you wouldn't really fancy being 6 under out there. So I think that's a good indication of how good it was.”

It was a dramatic turnaround for Fleetwood on Friday. He said he struggled with his ball-striking, specifically his tee shots, on Day 1, but he was able to turn things around with an hour-long session on the range following his opening round.

Getty Images

Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

By Tiger TrackerJuly 20, 2018, 10:15 am

Following an even-par 71 in the first round of the 147th Open Championship, Tiger Woods looks to make a move on Day 2 at Carnoustie.


Getty Images

McIlroy responds to Harmon's 'robot' criticism

By Mercer BaggsJuly 20, 2018, 6:53 am

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Rory McIlroy said during his pre-championship news conference that he wanted to play more "carefree" – citing Jon Rahm’s approach now and the way McIlroy played in his younger days.

McIlroy got off to a good start Thursday at Carnoustie, shooting 2-under 69, good for a share of eighth place.

But while McIlroy admits to wanting to be a little less structured on the course, he took offense to comments made by swing coach Butch Harmon during a Sky Sports telecast.

Said Harmon:

“Rory had this spell when he wasn’t putting good and hitting the ball good, and he got so wrapped up in how he was going to do it he forgot how to do it.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


“He is one of the best players the game has ever seen. If he would just go back to being a kid and playing the way he won these championships and play your game, don’t have any fear or robotic thoughts. Just play golf. Just go do it.

“This is a young kid who’s still one of the best players in the world. He needs to understand that. Forget about your brand and your endorsement contracts. Forget about all that. Just go back to having fun playing golf. I still think he is one of the best in the world and can be No.1 again if he just lets himself do it.”

McIlroy, who has never worked with Harmon, responded to the comments when asked about them following his opening round.

“Look, I like Butch. Definitely, I would say I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum than someone that's mechanical and someone that's – you know, it's easy to make comments when you don't know what's happening,” McIlroy said. “I haven't spoken to Butch in a long time. He doesn't know what I'm working on in my swing. He doesn't know what's in my head. So it's easy to make comments and easy to speculate. But unless you actually know what's happening, I just really don't take any notice of it.”

McIlroy second round at The Open began at 2:52 a.m. ET.