Saturday, July 31, 2010

This Week in Golf

Front Nine

Hole #1 – Bernhard Langer won the Senior Open Championship at Carnoustie last week by one stroke over Corey Pavin. Those two were the frontrunners most of the tournament. Langer shot a one under par 70 on Sunday finishing with a bogie five. He shot five under par for the week.

Hole #2 – Sweden’s Carl Pettersson took the RBC Canadian Open with a fourteen under par performance at beautiful St. George’s in Toronto. Pettersson also concluded his efforts with a bogie, but it was just enough to outlast Dean Wilson who he was battling all day.

Hole #3 - Pettersson’s fondest memory of his fourth PGA Tour victory will have to be from Saturday, though. The NC State grad made the cut on the mark, but shot up the leaderboard on moving day with a course record breaking round of 60! We nearly witnessed yet another magical 59 only two weeks after Goydos’ at the JDC. Pettersson’s birdie putt on 18 on Saturday burned the cup, but failed to drop in for that golden number.

Hole #4 – Dean Wilson put up a good fight in Canada. The American journeyman, possibly best known for being Annika Sorenstam’s playing partner during her appearance at the 2003 Colonial, held the lead for much of the week. He battled through a rainy Saturday afternoon and actually increased his lead. I am not a big fan of his very deliberate playing style. I prefer the Dan Pohl pace, but slow and steady seems to work for some. Even though, Wilson did not get the W, the runner-up finish will get him into more tournaments this season. He played on a sponsor’s exemption, probably because of his college teammate Mike Weir, but his play at St. George’s bumped him up to 110th on the FedEx Cup points list. Another solid event could lead to getting his Tour card back for 2011.

Hole #5 – St. George’s was a wonderful venue. I am thrilled that they want to host the Canadian Open again in about six years. Paul Casey was right when he described it as “old school.” It is a course of its time, and the wet weather made the rough play as thick and difficult as possible. I enjoy watching players think around traditional North American courses. A premium was placed on driving accuracy and shot making. Hosting their national championship again put St. George’s on the golfing world’s radar as an excellent venue.

Hole #6 – Jiyai Shin vaulted herself back to the world’s number one woman golfer. Shin won the LPGA event last week in France. The Evian Masters is played in the mountains surrounding Lake Geneva, and the beauty of the surroundings and quality of competition forces all the ladies mark off their calendars for this one. Morgan Pressel and 15-year-old Alexis Thompson were in contention on Sunday. In fact, Pressel held the 54-hole lead and even had an eagle on the front nine. However, Shin, Pressel’s playing partner, made a charge with birdies on four, five, and eight. The final group came to 18 in a four-way tie for the lead. Both women had good birdie looks. Shin’s dropped, and Pressel’s just missed.

Hole #7 – Pressel demonstrated her French vocabulary on the 14th hole on Sunday. The European galleries behave slightly different than here in the U.S. Pressel backed off her fairway bunker shot twice as cell phones rang and cameras clicked. After backing away for the second time, the Golf Channel picked up her commentary on the “f*@#ing circus.” The color commentator quickly quipped, “We need a little translation, I think.”

Hole #8 – Richard S. Johnson won the Scandinavian Masters on Sunday. The Swede was overshadowed heading into the final round by better known professionals, K.J. Choi and Louis Oosthuizen. The Open champ looked as if he may become the first to win the European Tour event following the Open. Choi and Oosthuizen did not play like champions on Sunday, though, and the homeland favorite took the cake.

Hole #9 – 17-year-old Bobby Wyatt shot a 14-under par score of 57 over 18 holes on Wednesday at the 6,600 yard Country Club of Mobile in the Alabama Boys Junior State Amateur Championship. What a round! The young man has qualified for the US Amateur later in August. He is an incoming freshman on the Crimson Tide golf team.

Back Nine
Hole #10 – The PGA Tour is playing The Greenbriar in West Virginia for the first time this week. The C.B. MacDonald design was constructed in the Allegheny Mountains over 80 years ago. It is a beautiful resort that was popularized by head pro for almost 50 years, Sam Snead.

Hole #11 – The women are flying from France to Royal Birkdale for the Ricoh Women’s Open Championship this week.

Hole #12 – While the women come into Great Britain, the seniors are heading from Scotland all the way to Seattle, Washington to play spectacular Sahalee for the U.S. Senior Open.

Hole #13 – CBS will broadcast the PGA Tour event. NBC will cover the U.S. Senior, and the women will air on ESPN2.

Hole #14 – A strong field has gathered at Killarney for the 3 Irish Open. U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell will be playing for his home crowd.

Hole #15 – The Greenbriar does not boast a stellar field this week with the PGA Tour heading into a busy time for its top players during the months of August and September. Jim Furyk is the top name in the field.

Hole #16 – It has been a long time since the Americans won three of the women’s majors in one year. After claiming the two most recent ones, we have a chance. Morgan Pressel played well last week. Cristie Kerr won the LPGA, and Paula Creamer won at Oakmont. We will see what happens.

Hole #17 – Fred Couples is returning to his home state for the U.S. Senior Open. Many of the players are experiencing jetlag after back-to-back weeks eight time zones apart. Paul Azinger, Nick Price, and Tom Pernice Jr. have all withdrawn from the field.

Hole #18 – Sorry about the late post. It has been a busy week.

No comments:

Post a Comment

[Valid Atom 1.0]