Browne Wins Deutsche Bank

By Sports NetworkSeptember 5, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 Deutsche Bank ChampionshipNORTON, Mass. -- Olin Browne distanced himself from four other co-overnight leaders with a 4-under 67 on Monday to win the Deutsche Bank Championship.
Browne finished the tournament at 14-under-par 270 to earn his third career victory and first in six years. He ended with a one-stroke victory over Jason Bohn, who birdied 18 for a 3-under 68 in his final round at the TPC of Boston.
Tiger Woods
After starting with a 65, Tiger Woods slowly faded through the weekend, eventually finishing in a tie for 40th.
Vaughn Taylor also shot a 3-under 68 Monday to finish alone in third place at minus-10. Charles Howell III (67), Jeff Brehaut (70), Joey Sindelar (71) and Carl Pettersson (72) shared fourth place one stroke further back.
Browne, whose best finish this year had been a tie for 15th place at The International last month, won for the first time since the 1999 Colonial. He entered the tournament ranked 119th on the money list, but will make a big leap with a $990,000 paycheck.
'I'm speechless right now,' said Browne, who shared the overnight lead with Bohn, Pettersson, Billy Andrade and John Rollins. 'I really had to stay in the moment today and was really focused.'
Browne played the front nine at 3 under while some of the other co-overnight leaders struggled, but he really began taking control of the tournament around the turn.
The 46-year-old moved to 14 under with a 6-foot birdie putt at the 10th and saved par at the par-3 11th after knocking his tee shot off the back of the green.
Playing two groups behind Browne, Bohn sliced his tee shot into the woods at No. 9 and fell two strokes off the pace with a bogey that dropped him to minus-12.
Bohn stumbled to another bogey at the 10th hole, and Browne rolled in a par putt at 12 to remain at 14 under and move three strokes ahead.
But things would go less smoothly for the leader a few holes later.
Browne made an easy par at the 13th after hitting the flag stick with his 201-yard approach shot, and he parred 14 from the fringe. But the 21-year professional missed a short par putt at No. 15 after pitching within 4 feet from the rough, falling to minus-13 with his first bogey of the day.
Bohn, who won his only career title at this year's B.C. Open, then birdied the 14th to get to 12 under and close the gap to just one stroke.
But Browne all but clinched a victory with a birdie at the par-4 17th, where his gutsy approach shot locked onto the pin and bounced just past the hole to set up a makeable putt.
'I knew I was leading, but I didn't know by how much,' admitted Browne. 'I had a good feel with the shot that I hit, and I had a good feel with it all day long. So I went ahead and hit it, then managed to make the putt and it was great.'
Bohn strung together three straight pars after his birdie at No. 14 and needed to make eagle at the 18th to tie Browne. But his second shot landed just outside a greenside bunker, and the best he could manage was birdie.
Brandt Jobe and Fred Couples shared eighth place at 8 under after matching rounds of 69. Mark Wilson (69), Marco Dawson (71), Brett Wetterich (72), Bo Van Pelt (72) and Kent Jones (73) tied for 10th place one stroke further back.
First-round leader and unofficial host Tiger Woods shot a final-round 71 to finish in a tie for 40th place at minus-3.
'It was a frustrating last three days,' said Woods, whose charity is the main beneficiary of the tournament. 'I didn't have it, I didn't play particularly well, and consequently I was nowhere in contention.'
Andrade and Rollins both struggled to 4-over 75s in their final round. They ended up tied with 10 other golfers for 15th place at 6 under.
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    Punch shot: Predictions for the 147th Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 4:00 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – In advance of the 147th Open Championship, writers sound off on burning questions as players ready for a fast and firm test at Carnoustie. Here’s what our writers think about myriad topics:

    The Monday morning headline will be …

    REX HOGGARD: “Survival.” This one is easy. It always is at Carnoustie, which is widely considered The Open’s most demanding major championship test. Monday’s headline will be that the champion - pick a champion, any one will do - “survived” another dramatic Open. You don’t dominate Carnoustie; you endure.

    RYAN LAVNER: “DJ Bashes Way to Victory at Carnoustie.” If somehow a two-win season could be disappointing, it has been for DJ. He’s first in scoring average, birdie average, par-4 scoring, par-5 scoring, strokes gained: tee to green and proximity from the rough. Those last two stats are the most important, especially here at Carnoustie, with these dry conditions. The game’s preeminent long-and-straight driver, there’s a better-than-decent chance he rolls.

    MERCER BAGGS: “Rahm Tough: Spaniard charges to Open victory.” Jon Rahm will claim him maiden major title this week by powering his way through the winds and fescue at Carnoustie.

    JAY COFFIN: “Thomas wins second major, ascends to world No. 1 again.” Shortly after The Open last year, Thomas rolled through the end of the PGA Tour season. This is the time of year he likes best. Despite a poor Open record the last two years, he’s not remotely concerned. He’s a tad miffed he didn’t win in France two weeks ago and comes to Carnoustie refreshed, with a gameplan, and ready to pounce.

    Who or what will be the biggest surprise?

    HOGGARD: Style of play. Given Carnoustie’s reputation as a brute, the surprise will be how the champion arrives at his lofty perch. Unlike previous editions at Carnoustie, this week’s dry conditions will promote more aggressive play off the tee and the winner will defy the norm and power his way to victory.

    LAVNER: Tiger Woods. This is Woods’ best chance to win a major this year, and here’s believing he contends. His greatest strengths are his iron game and scrambling, and both aspects will be tested to the extreme at Carnoustie, helping separate him from some of the pretenders. With even a little cooperation from his putter, he should be in the mix.

    BAGGS: Padraig Harrington. He had a good opening round last week at the Scottish Open and has some good vibes being the 2007 Open champion at Carnoustie. He won’t contend for four rounds, but a few days in the mix would be a nice surprise.

    COFFIN: Alex Noren. Perhaps someone ranked 11th in the world shouldn’t be a surprise, but with so much focus on some of the bigger, household names, don’t be surprised when Noren is in contention on Sunday. He hasn’t finished worse than 25th since early May and won two weeks ago in France. He also tied for sixth place last year at Royal Birkdale.

    Who or what will be the biggest disappointment?

    HOGGARD: Jordan Spieth. Although he was brilliant on his way to victory last year at Royal Birkdale, Spieth is not the same player for this week’s championship, the byproduct of a balky putter that has eroded his confidence. Spieth said giving back the claret jug this week was hard, but his finish will be even tougher.

    LAVNER: Weather. This might sound a little sadistic, but one of the unique joys of covering this tournament is to watch the best in the world battle conditions they face only once a year – the bone-chilling cold, the sideways rain, the howling wind. It doesn’t appear as though that’ll happen this year. With only a few hours of light rain expected, and no crazy winds in the forecast, the biggest challenge for these stars will be judging the bounces on the hard, baked-out turf.

    BAGGS: Jordan Spieth. The defending champion is still trying to find his winning form and Carnoustie doesn’t seem the place to do that. As much as he says he loves playing in strong winds, there should be enough danger around here to frustrate Spieth into a missed cut.

    COFFIN: Rory McIlroy. I hope I’m wrong on this, because the game is better when Rory is in contention at majors. Putting always has been his issue and seemingly always will be. While there isn’t as much of a premium placed on putting this week because of slower greens, he may still have to hit it close. Super close.

    What will be the winning score?

    HOGGARD: 10 under. The last two Opens played at Carnoustie were won with 7-under and 6-over totals, but this week’s conditions will favor more aggressive play and lower scores. Expect to see plenty of birdies, but the great equalizer will come on Sunday when wind gusts are forecast to reach 25 mph.

    LAVNER: 15 under. An Open at Carnoustie has never produced a winner lower than 9 under (Tom Watson in 1975), but never have the conditions been this susceptible to low scores. Sure, the fairway bunkers are still a one-shot penalty, but today’s big hitters can fly them. The thin, wispy rough isn’t much of a deterrent. And the wind isn’t expected to really whip until the final day.

    BAGGS: 12 under. We aren’t going to see the same kind of weather we have previously witnessed at Carnoustie, and that’s a shame. Any players who catch relatively benign conditions should be able to go low, as long as they can properly navigate the fairway rollout.

    COFFIN: 14 under. Walked into a local golf shop in the town of Carnoustie wearing a Golf Channel logo and the man behind the counter said, “It’ll take 14 under to win this week.” Well, he’s been here for years and seen Carnoustie host The Open twice before. He knows more about it than I do, so I’ll stick with his number.

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    Watch: Na plays backwards flop and practices lefty

    By Grill Room TeamJuly 18, 2018, 3:16 pm

    Fresh off his victory at The Greenbrier, Kevin Na is taking a quite-literally-backwards approach to his Open prep.

    Caddie Kenny Harms has been sharing videos of Na's early work at Carnoustie.

    This one shows Na standing in a bunker and playing a flop shot over his own head (as opposed to someone else's):

    While it's unlikely he'll have a need for that exact shot this week, it's far more likely a player may have to think about turning his club over and playing from the wrong side of the ball, like so:

    Na has made 4 of 6 cuts at The Open and will look to improve on his best career finish, currently a T-22 in 2016 at Royal Troon.

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    McIlroy growing 'comfortable' on Open courses

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 18, 2018, 1:45 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – For a player who once complained about the vagaries of links golf, Rory McIlroy enters this Open with a dazzling record in the sport’s oldest championship.

    Though he missed the 2015 event because of an ankle injury, McIlroy has now posted three consecutive top-5 finishes in the year’s third major.

    “It’s surprising a little bit that my best form in major championships has been this tournament,” he said Wednesday, “but at the same time I’ve grown up these courses, and I’m comfortable on them. I think going to courses on The Open rota that I’ve played quite a lot. I think that helps. You have a comfort level with the golf course, and you’ve built up enough experience to know where to hit and where not to hit it.”

    Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    McIlroy still regrets what happened in 2015, when he “did something slightly silly” and injured his ankle while playing soccer a few weeks before the event. That came a year after he triumphed at Royal Liverpool.

    “Since 2010, I couldn’t wait to play The Open at St. Andrews,” he said. “I thought that was one of my best chances to win a major.”

    He tied for 42nd at Carnoustie in 2007, earning low-amateur honors.  

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    Height of irony: Phil putts in front of 'rules' sign

    By Grill Room TeamJuly 18, 2018, 1:36 pm

    A picture is worth 1,000 words and potentially two strokes for playing a moving ball under Rule 14-5 but not Rule 1-2.

    Phil Mickelson has been having some fun during his Open prep at Carnoustie hitting flop shots over human beings, but the irony of this photo below is too obvious to go over anyone's head.

    Mickelson also tried tapping down fescue two weeks ago at The Greenbrier, incurring another two-shot penalty.

    And so we're left to wonder about what Phil asked himself back at Shinnecock Hills: "The real question is, ‘What am I going to do next?’”