Widmark Takes Over Top Spot in Moscow

By Sports NetworkAugust 12, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 Cadillac Russian OpenMOSCOW, Russia -- Fredrik Widmark fired his second straight 5-under-par 67 on Friday to take the lead after two rounds at the Russian Open.
Widmark's 10-under-par 134 is one stroke clear of fellow Swede Mikael Lundberg, who stands alone in second place after a round of 4-under 68. Ben Mason (68) and Shaun P. Webster (68) of England share third place at 8- under 136, while Spain's Jesus Maria Arruti (70) is alone in fifth place at minus-7.
Scotland's Marc Warren fired the tournament's low score with an 8-under 64 and leads a group of four knotted in sixth place at 6-under-par 138.
This tournament is the third dual-ranking event of the 2005 season for the European and Challenge Tours. And with the PGA Championship being played eight time zones away, no player ranked in the Order of Merit's top-100 is in the field.
Eighty-five golfers missed the cut, which was set at even-par, and 70 moved on to play the weekend.
Widmark, who is sixth in the Challenge Tour rankings after a pair of titles this year, opened his round on the back nine and promptly moved to 7 under with birdies at the par-4 10th and the par-3 11th. He dropped a shot at No. 15, but made the turn at minus-8 after consecutive birdies at 17 and 18.
'I got off to a good start today with birdies at the 10th and 11th and things went on nicely,' said Widmark.
A par at No. 1 was followed by three straight birdies as Widmark moved to 11 under. The 29-year-old then found himself face-to-face with two holes that gave him trouble on Thursday: the 576-yard, par-5 fifth, which he bogeyed in the first round, and the par-4 sixth, where he dropped two strokes with a double-bogey Thursday.
Widmark collected par at both holes, but then dropped a shot with a bogey at No. 8 to fall to minus-10.
'I had a poor finish...by hitting bad approach shots into the last four holes, which made me make bogey on the eighth,' said Widmark. 'But all in all, a very good day.
'I do feel confident at the moment and I am enjoying the game. If you play good golf then it is all the more enjoyable. There's nothing worse than to be on the golf course and you are playing badly and things don't happen -- that is the worst feeling. But if you do play well like I am now then there is no better feeling, so I am excited.'
Scotland's Sebastien Delagrange and Johan Edfors of Sweden both shot 5- under 67s in their second round to lead a group of eight golfers tied for 10th place at 5-under-par 139. Two-time Russian Open champion Iain Pyman of England is among the eight after an even-par 72 Friday.
Overnight leader Tom Whitehouse of England stumbled to a 3-over 75 to fall into a tie for 26th at 3-under-par 141.
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    Expired visa, helicopter, odd clubs all part of Vegas' journey

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 19, 2018, 3:48 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Jhonattan Vegas thought someone was playing a practical joke on him.

    Or maybe he was stuck in the middle of a horror movie.

    Scheduled to leave for The Open a week ago, he didn’t arrive at Carnoustie until a little more than an hour before his first-round tee time Thursday.

    “Even if somebody tried to do that on purpose,” he said, “you couldn’t really do it.”

    The problem was an expired visa.

    Vegas said that he must have gotten confused by the transposed date on the visa – “Guessing I’ve been living in America too long” – and assumed that he was cleared to travel.

    No problem, he was told. He’d have a new visa in 24 hours.

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    Except the consulate in New York didn’t respond to his application the next day, keeping him in limbo through the weekend. Then, on Monday, he was told that he’d applied for the wrong visa. UPS got shut down in New York and his visa never left, so Vegas waited in vain for seven hours in front of the consulate in Houston. He finally secured his visa on Wednesday morning, boarded a flight from Houston to Toronto, and then flew to Glasgow, the final leg of a 14-hour journey.

    His agent arranged a helicopter ride from Glasgow to Carnoustie to ensure that he could make his 10:31 a.m. (local) tee time.

    One more issue? His clubs never made it. They were left back in Toronto.

    His caddie, Ruben Yorio, scrambled to put together a new bag, with a mismatched set of woods, irons, wedges and putter.

    “Luckily the (equipment) vans are still here,” Vegas said. “Otherwise I probably would have played with members’ clubs today.”

    He hit about 20 balls on the range – “Luckily they were going forward” – but Carnoustie is one of the most challenging links in the world, and Vegas was working off of two hours’ sleep and without his own custom-built clubs. He shot 76 but, hey, at least he tried.

    “It was fun,” he said, “even though the journey was frustrating.”

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    'Brain fart' leads to Spieth's late collapse

    By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:44 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – The closing stretch at Carnoustie has famously ruined many a solid round, so Jordan Spieth’s misadventures on Thursday should not have been a complete surprise, but the truth is the defending champion’s miscues were very much self-inflicted.

    Spieth was cruising along at 3 under par, just two shots off the early lead, when he made a combination of errors at the par-4 15th hole. He hit the wrong club off the tee (4-iron) and the wrong club for his approach (6-iron) on his way to a double bogey-6.

    “The problem was on the second shot, I should have hit enough club to reach the front of the green, and even if it goes 20 yards over the green, it's an easy up-and-down,” Spieth said. “I just had a brain fart, and I missed it into the location where the only pot bunker where I could actually get in trouble, and it plugged deep into it. It was a really, really poor decision on the second shot, and that cost me.”

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    Spieth continued to compound his problems with a sloppy bogey at the 16th hole, and a drive that sailed left at 18 found the Barry Burn en route to a closing bogey and a 1-over 72.

    The miscues were more mental, a lack of execution, than they were an example of how difficult the closing stretch at Carnoustie can be, and that’s not good enough for Spieth.

    “That's what I would consider as a significant advantage for me is recognizing where the misses are,” said Spieth, who was tied for 68th when he completed his round. “It felt like a missed opportunity.”

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    Perez: R&A does it right, 'not like the USGA'

    By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:28 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Pat Perez didn’t even attempt to hide his frustration with the USGA at last month’s U.S. Open, and after an opening-round 69 at The Open, he took the opportunity to double down on his displeasure.

    “They (the R&A) do it right, not like the USGA,” Perez said of the setup at Carnoustie. “They've got the opposite [philosophy] here. I told them, you guys have it right, let the course get baked, but you've got the greens receptive. They're not going to run and be out of control. They could have easily had the greens just like the fairway, but they didn't. The course is just set up perfect.”

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    Concerns at Shinnecock Hills reached a crescendo on Saturday when the scoring average ballooned to 75.3 and only three players broke the par of 70. Of particular concern for many players, including Perez, were some of the hole locations, given how fast and firm the greens were.

    “The U.S. Open could have been like this more if they wanted to. They could have made the greens a bit more receptive,” Perez said. “These greens are really flat compared to Shinnecock. So that was kind of the problem there is they let it get out of control and they made the greens too hard.”