No 'I' â€' or Allenby â€' in team

By Randall MellNovember 29, 2011, 7:03 pm

It’s becoming difficult to tell who irritates Robert Allenby more: His opponents? Or his teammates?

News of Allenby’s confrontation with fellow Australian Geoff Ogilvy in the wake of the Internationals’ Presidents Cup loss immediately brought back memories of the controversy that Allenby touched off after the Internationals lost at Harding Park two years ago.

In case you forgot, in the wake of the ‘09 loss, Allenby went off on American Anthony Kim after losing to him in singles. Allenby said back then that he was frustrated getting beat by a guy who on the eve of their match returned to the team hotel “sideways” at 4 a.m. after a night of drinking.

Though Allenby said his friends saw Kim return in this condition, just five hours before their match, Kim routed Allenby, 5 and 3.

“Maybe we should all take the theory of Anthony Kim,” Allenby said back then. “Get home at 4 o’clock and then go shoot 6 under.”

Allenby called Kim “the current John Daly” and “the loosest cannon on that team.”

So who’s really the loose cannon in these international team events? I was there when Allenby went off on Kim and had the unpleasant task of running down Kim in the parking lot to get a response to the accusations.

A couple days later, Allenby issued an apology, then basically blamed the media for coaxing the controversy out of him and taking his quotes out of context. I was there. Nothing could have been further from the truth. Allenby went off without any prompting even after he was given the benefit of the doubt in being asked if he meant his comments for the record.

Basically, Allenby threw the four reporters who were there under the bus. Now, we’ve got some charming company. Allenby’s thrown Ogilvy under the bus with us.

In the genteel world of golf, Allenby blamed Ogilvy and other teammates for putting him in bad spots. He specifically cited three errant shots Ogilvy hit in the woods when paired with Allenby in the Day 3 foursomes. Pointing that out is worse form than Ogilvy might have shown over those shots.

Within the delicate sensibilities of golf, Allenby's comments are figuratively akin to Ndamukong Suh stomping on another NFL player after play has ended, except it’s a teammate Allenby's stomping.

Allenby was 0-4-0 at this last Presidents Cup. He was obviously frustrated.

That brings us to the Blame Game, which is practically an art form in golf. It’s also a defense mechanism. A bad shot, or a loss, is almost never a player’s fault. There was an unexpected puff of wind, a caddie giving bad yardage, somebody moving in the gallery. The rationalizing is understood in the game because a player must zealously guard against allowing doubt to enter his head. Doubt comes before the fall in golf.

So, while there may be no doubts in Allenby’s head after his winless performance at the Presidents Cup, with blame attached elsewhere, there has to be some serious doubts in the heads of future International captains who might want to pick Allenby again. He’s proving he’s not a very gracious adversary. He’s not even a very gracious teammate.

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Casey (62) opens up four-shot lead at Travelers

By Nick MentaJune 23, 2018, 9:48 pm

On the strength of an 8-under 62, Paul Casey will take a four-shot lead into the final round of the Travelers Championship. Here’s where things stand through three rounds outside Hartford.

Leaderboard: Casey (-16), Russell Henley (-12), J.B. Holmes (-11), Anirban Lahiri (-11), Brian Harman (-11)

What it means: Casey is hunting his third PGA Tour victory and his second this season. The Englishman went nine years between Tour titles and racked up a number of near-misses after dedicating himself to a full-time U.S. schedule in 2015. He finally broke through earlier this year at the Valspar, edging a resurgent Tiger Woods, and now looks to further kick down a finally open door. TPC River Highlands is a gettable golf course, and notable names like Day, Watson and DeChambeau lurk at 10 under, but the field may need some help from Casey, who has separated himself through 54 holes.  

Round of the day: Casey fired the round of the week with six birdies and an eagle at the short par-4 15th. He leads the tournament in birdies made with six in each round for 18 total. He has hit each of his last 23 greens in regulation.

Best of the rest: Jaime Lovemark signed for a 6-under 64 highlighted by an eagle at 15. He enters Sunday tied for 11th, hunting his fourth top-10 finish of the season.

Biggest disappointment: While Casey was ripping up the course, four of the top seven players in the Official World Golf Ranking - Rory McIlroy (69), Brooks Koepka (69), Justin Thomas (70) and Jordan Spieth (71) - combined to shoot 1 under par Saturday. .

Shot of the day: James Hahn’s slam-dunk ace from 154 yards at the par-3 11th.

After a 3-over front nine, Hahn closed in 29 on the back for a ho-hum 67.

Quote of the day: "That's something I rarely see from me, 18 greens in regulation. So whatever he told me worked" - Casey on his work with his swing coach, Peter Kostis

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Watch: Hahn slam-dunks ace on 11th hole

By Golf Channel DigitalJune 23, 2018, 7:20 pm

There are aces, and there are slam-dunk aces. No question which one this one by James Hahn on the 154-yard 11th hole was.

It was Hahn's first ace on the PGA Tour.

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Els' nephew Rebula wins Amateur Championship

By Golf Channel DigitalJune 23, 2018, 7:05 pm

Ernie Els is one proud uncle.

His nephew, Jovan Rebula, won the Amateur Championship on Saturday at Royal Aberdeen to become the first South African to capture the title since Bobby Cole in 1966.

Rebula, a junior at Auburn, will join his famous uncle in Carnoustie next month for The Open. He also will get invites to the 2019 Masters and the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

Rebula defeated Ireland's Robin Dawson, 3 and 2, in the 36-hole final.

"It’s unreal," Rebula said. "It’s really something that is hard to describe. I feel like many have been in this position before but it’s an unreal feeling. It hasn’t sunk in quite yet but hopefully tomorrow morning I can wake up and I will feel a little different."

Rebula received plenty of texts from Els throughout the week, and the encouragement paid off. Rebula opened a 1-up lead after 18 holes, and he extended his advantage by winning the 26th and 27th holes. He was 5 up with six to play before finally closing out Dawson on the 16th hole with an up-and-down from the bunker.

"It’s been a long week and especially today," Rebula said. "I should have finished maybe a couple of holes earlier, but it’s been awesome. A very tiring week. I’m standing here right now and there’s so much adrenaline pumping through me."

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Squirrel gets Rory's round off to a rocky start

By Will GrayJune 23, 2018, 6:42 pm

CROMWELL, Conn. – Rory McIlroy’s third round at the Travelers Championship got off to a peculiar start before he even hit a shot.

McIlroy had just been introduced on the first tee at TPC River Highlands and was ready to unload on his opening drive of the day when a squirrel ran across the tee box a few feet in front of him.

McIlroy stopped his swing and laughed it off, but the squirrel continued to linger for several seconds, criss-crossing from one side of the packed tee box to the other. And while this was no black cat, the pump-fake to start his round didn’t exactly help the Ulsterman.

McIlroy ultimately blocked his drive into the right rough after enduring his brief rodent delay en route to an opening bogey, and amid soft conditions at TPC River Highlands he played his first five holes in 2 over. McIlroy started the day at 7 under, three shots behind leader Brian Harman.