New Years Hooks Cuts

By Rich LernerJanuary 5, 2006, 5:00 pm
  • Used to be a time in golf when January in Maui with a million bucks on the line was a big deal. These days, superstars react as if theyre being asked to sling fries at a Jack in the Box in Detroit in February.
     
  • On the other hand, if Jack in the Box sponsored an event in February in Detroit with a five million dollar first prize, I suspect the heavyweights would put on the parkas and play.
     
  • Then again, if youre not moved by a million, and you have 20 or 40 or 100 of those tucked away, maybe youre not even moved by five large ones.
     
  • Favorite winter break moment: a well-struck 6-iron lingering against the setting Florida sun with my 13- and 7-year-old sons rolling the rock on the practice putting green behind me at our local muni.
     
  • Think about it, if youre Tiger, do you really need Maui when you can hop aboard your luxury yacht and cruise the Caribbean with your gorgeous Swedish wife?
     
  • Couple of reasons golf is better than college football: meaningful contests dont stretch past midnight, and unlike the Florida State kicker who lipped out an overtime field goal, the guy who blows the must-make three-footer cant hide from the cameras behind some mammoth linemen.
     
  • Wonder if Mr. Mercedes Benz has had any conversations with Mr. Tim Finchem? Cant imagine the premium automaker is very happy with the status quo. And with top players committed to the commissioners WGC largesse, and so many lucrative opportunities popping up across Asia, well, as I said, a mill in Maui isnt what it used to be.
     
  • The greats own all the jet skis and boats and planes and homes their hard-earned cash can buy, but its the majors theyre after and the majors that will define their legacies. And therein lays a problem for the commissioner. Not a single major belongs to the PGA Tour, which offers heaps of money that top players like but dont necessarily need, yet little of the glory they ultimately crave.
     
  • On the subject of majors, here are a handful of guys who should be feeling some heat this year: Davis Love III, Chris DiMarco, Ernie Els, Sergio Garcia and Padraig Harrington. It should also get a bit uncomfortable for Stuart Appelby and Stewart Cink.
     
  • Reminded of several truths over the holiday hiatus: I still love pick-up basketball even if my 45-year-old body does not, and the sweats crucial because I also love Valdianos Pizza, Breyers Heath Bar Crunch Ice Cream and Sweet and Sour Shrimp from Eastern Pearl.
     
  • Worth following early this year: Mike Weir, who fell from eighth to 45th in the world, and Charles Howell III, whose only win came several years ago and who has now fallen behind other young Americans like Sean OHair, Ben Crane and perhaps even Ryan Moore.
     
  • Played a charity event with Jim Thorpe and Im fairly certain Ill never again laugh that hard on a golf course. Hes to salty stories what Nicklaus was to the Masters.

  • Two-cent movie reviews: Crash is deep and disturbing, a solid rental; as for Syrianna, its timely, intricate, possibly even confusing, though in all a thought-provoking look at big oil, big government and the big picture in the Middle East.
     
  • When I start reviewing movies, its clearly time to check out. Happy, healthy New Year to you and yours. Of course, wed all be a little happier and a little healthier if we played more golf and shot lower scores, wouldnt we?!
     
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    Molinari holds off McIlroy to win BMW PGA

    By Associated PressMay 27, 2018, 3:20 pm

    VIRGINIA WATER, England - Rory McIlroy left his victory charge too late at Wentworth as Francesco Molinari delivered a clinic in front-running to win the BMW PGA Championship by two shots with a 4-under 68 on Sunday.

    McIlroy, who led by three shots at halfway, entered the final round tied for the lead with Molinari on 13 under par but a Sunday shootout at the European Tour's flagship event never really materialized.

    Instead, as McIlroy toiled to a 70 that was propped up by birdies on the par fives at Nos. 17 and 18, Molinari went bogey-free for a second straight day to claim the fifth victory of his career and the biggest since a World Golf Championship in Shanghai in 2010.


    Full-field scores from the BMW PGA Championship


    The Italian only dropped two shots all week and finished on 17-under 271, with McIlroy alone in second place. Alex Noren (67) and Lucas Bjerregaard (65) were tied for third place a stroke further back.

    Molinari moved into the automatic qualifying places for the Ryder Cup, which he hasn't played since 2012 when Europe beat the United States in the so-called ''Miracle at Medinah.''

    He'd previously had five top-10 finishes in the last six years at Wentworth, including being runner-up to Noren last year.

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    Four top finishers in Japan qualify for The Open

    By Associated PressMay 27, 2018, 10:19 am

    IBARAKI, Japan – Shota Akiyoshi of Japan shot a 2-under-par 70 on Sunday to win the Mizuno Open and qualify for The 147th Open.

    Akiyoshi offset three bogeys with five birdies at the Royal Golf Club in Ibaraki, Japan, to finish 1 under overall and secure his first ever tournament win on the Japan Golf Tour.

    Michael Hendry of New Zealand and Japanese golfers Masahiro Kawamura and Masanori Kobayashi were tied for second one stroke off the pace to also qualify for The Open at Carnoustie, Scotland, from July 19-22.

    Hendry, who led the tournament coming into the final round, came close to forcing a playoff with Akiyoshi but dropped a shot with a bogey on the final hole when he needed a par to draw level.

    Hendry will make his second appearance at The Open after qualifying at the Mizuno Open for the second year in a row.

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    Lewis hopes to win at Volvik with baby on the way

    By Randall MellMay 27, 2018, 12:55 am

    Stacy Lewis was listening to more than her caddie on her march up the leaderboard Saturday at the Volvik Championship.

    Pregnant with her first child, she is listening to her body in a new way these days.

    And she could hear a message coming through loud and clear toward the end of her round at Travis Point Country Club in Ann Arbor, Mich.

    “The little one was telling me it’s dinnertime,” Lewis said.

    Lewis birdied five of the last six holes to shoot 5-under-par 67 and move into position to make a Sunday run at winning her 13th LPGA title. She is two shots behind the leader, Minjee Lee, whose 68 moved her to 12 under overall.

    Sunday has the makings of a free for all with 10 players within three shots of the lead.


    Full-field scores from the LPGA Volvik Championship


    Lewis, 33, is four months pregnant, with her due date Nov. 3. She’s expecting to play just a few more times before putting the clubs away to get ready for the birth. She said she’s likely to make the Marathon Classic in mid-July her last start of the season before returning next year.

    Of course, Lewis would relish winning with child.

    “I don’t care what limitations I have or what is going on with my body, I want to give myself a chance to win,” she told LPGA.com at the Kingsmill Championship last week.

    Lewis claimed an emotional victory with her last title, taking the Cambia Portland Classic late last summer after announcing earlier in the week that she would donate her entire winnings to the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in her Houston hometown.

    A victory Sunday would also come with a lot of emotion.

    It’s been an interesting year for Lewis.

    There’s been the joy of learning she’s ready to begin the family she has been yearning for, and the struggle to play well after bouncing back from injury.

    Lewis missed three cuts in a row before making it into the weekend at the Kingsmill Championship last week. That’s one more cut than she missed cumulatively in the previous six years. In six starts this year, Lewis hasn’t finished among the top 50 yet, but she hasn’t felt right, either.

    The former world No. 1 didn’t make her second start of 2018 until April, at the year’s first major, the ANA Inspiration. She withdrew from the HSBC Women’s World Championship in late February with a strained right oblique muscle and didn’t play again for a month.

    Still, Lewis is finding plenty to get excited about with the baby on the way.

    “I kind of had my first Mother’s Day,” Lewis told LPGA.com last week. “It puts golf into perspective. It makes those bad days not seem so bad. It helps me sleep better at night. We are just really excited.”

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    Rose hasn't visited restroom at Colonial - here's why

    By Nick MentaMay 27, 2018, 12:20 am

    In case you're unaware, it's pretty hot in Texas.

    Temperatures at Colonial Country Club have approached 100 degrees this week, leaving players to battle both the golf course and potential dehydration.

    With the help of his caddie Mark Fulcher, Fort Worth Invitational leader Justin Rose has been plenty hot himself, staking himself to a four-shot lead.


    Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

    Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


    "Yeah, Fulch has done a great job of just literally handing me water bottle after water bottle. It seems relentless, to be honest with you," Rose said Saturday.

    So just how much are players sweating the heat at Colonial? Well, it doesn't sound like all that water is making it all the way through Rose.

    "I haven't even seen the inside of a restroom yet, so you can't even drink quick enough out there," he shared.