Sunday, October 30, 2011

McIlroy wins Shanghai Masters in playoff over AK, takes home 2 million

Although without his best stuff Sunday, Rory McIlroy held on to win the Shanghai Masters and the 2 million dollar prize with a playoff victory over Anthony Kim. McIlroy birdied the first playoff hole for his first win since the U.S. Open.

"It's something that I feel like I can still get better at is winning and putting yourself in the position to win when you're not playing your best," McIlroy said.

"Even if it's scrappy golf where you grind it out, you're going to win a lot more tournaments by doing that rather than playing your best golf the whole week. I was very happy I was able to pull this one out."

You Vs. McIlroy contest.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Jason Day joins the race for number one

Jason Day has risen fast over the past 18 months. The 23 year old won the Nelson last year and finished runner-up at both the Masters and the U.S. Open this year. He's currently the number seven player in the world but has his sights set a lot higher.

''You know, it's always been a goal of mine to get to the No.1 spot,'' Day said. ''But I know it comes with a lot of sacrifice, a lot of hard work, a lot of dedication to the game. It's small steps. At the start of my career, I thought I was going to come out and kill it. Unfortunately it didn't happen that way. I've worked my way back up to where I believe I can be [No.1]. I know it's going to take a while, but hopefully I can get to that No.1 spot in the next five years, and that would be nice.''

The race for number one throughout the next decade in golf should be interesting with so many great players vying for the spot. Luke Donald, the current number one, is playing great and seems to be getting better and more confident by the tournament. Rory Mcllroy, with one major under his belt already at age 22, also wants the number one spot and is closing in quick. Other young players out there capable of hitting number one include Martin Kaymer, Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler, Ryo Ishikawa, and Anthony Kim.

Plus, there are a few veterans out there who may have another run left in them including Phil Mickelson, Sergio Garcia, and the current number 55 in the world, Tiger Woods.

Day will next be seen playing down under at the Australian Open where he hopes to be paired with number 55. ''If they paired me with Tiger, there would be a lot of people out there, no doubt.''

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Golf Betting: Shanghai Masters

PGA Champion Keegan Bradley will look to make more history during his rookie year in Shanghai.
The Shanghai Masters begins Thursday at Lake Malaren Golf Course in Shanghai with the largest first place prize awarded in professional golf. The winner of the 30 player field will receive 2 million as well as appearance fees. Last place is guaranteed 25k. Unfortunately, this event will not be on television.

Notable player golf betting odds:
Rory McILroy: 5-1
Lee Westwood: 6-1
KJ Choi: 12-1
Charl Schwartzel: 13-1
Geoff Ogilvy: 17-1
Hunter Mahan: 17-1
Padraig Harrington: 17-1
Anthony Kim: 19-1
Keegan Bradley: 19-1
Louis Oosthuiven: 19-1

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Luke Donald: By the Numbers at the CMNHC

Luke Donald, the number one player in the world, won the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic by two shots over Justin Leonard. With his final round 64, which included six consecutive birdies on holes 10-15, he passed Webb Simpson to win the money title.

Scores: 66-71-70-64 (-17)
Driving distance: 279 (40)
Fairways in Reg: 69.6% (T32)
Greens in Reg: 73.6% (T29)
Sand Saves: 75% (T7)
Putts per round: 27.5 (T8)
Putts per green: 1.604 (1)
Birdies: 24 (1)

Donald earned $846k with the win which put him just over $6.6 million on the year, beating Simpson by about $300K. He came into the event knowing he had to win the tournament to win the money title and he took care of business.

"Everything was on the line," Donald said. "I'm thrilled and over the moon."

Friday, October 21, 2011

Coming Soon: The Arnold Palmer, alcoholic version

The famous "Arnold Palmer" drink will now have a version mixed with lemonade, arizona iced tea, and 5% alcohol. Sounds good.

It's been reported that both Darren Clarke and John Daly have pre-ordered 10 cases each.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Notes from the PGA Grand Slam of Golf, Bradley wins

Keegan Bradley of the USA during the second round of the PGA Grand Slam of Golf at the Port Royal Golf Course on October 19, 2011 in Southampton, Bermuda. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
Notes from the PGA Grand Slam of Golf on TNT - October 19, 2011
Keegan Bradley wins the PGA Grand Slam of Golf

PGA Grand Slam of Golf
Port Royal Golf Course in Bermuda

TNT’s broadcast team:  Verne Lundquist (play-by-play), Ian Baker-Finch (analyst), Billy Kratzert (course reporter) and Jim Huber (essayist/reporter)

Professional golf’s four major champions playing in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf:  Charl Schwartzel (2011 Masters), Rory McIlroy (2011 U.S. Open), Darren Clarke (2011 British Open) and Keegan Bradley (2011 PGA Championship) 

Kratzert speaking with Schwartzel on the windy conditions at Port Royal Golf Course in Bermuda and trying to catch leaders Bradley and McIlroy during the 2011 PGA Grand Slam of Golf: “With such a big lead on such a big course like this, you need wind, you need something so the guys don’t go for it. And then, obviously, you have to play well.”

Kratzert speaking with McIlroy on his play through eight holes: “It’s a lot tougher today than it was yesterday. It’s a bonus just to be here. It means you’ve had a wonderful year.”

Schwartzel on the last four holes he played at the Masters that helped him win the green jacket:  “Golf is a funny game.  Sometimes [I] play so good for so many holes.   Sometimes, I get the feeling that I can keep making birdies.  It’s a pretty good feeling.”

Baker-Finch on Clarke:  “He’s like a tropical wildflower.  He blossoms at rare and unpredictable times.  But he is always loveable.”  

Huber speaking with Mark Bradley, Keegan Bradley’s father: “I am very proud of him.  I remember the days when he would come to work with me and just practice, play and enjoy golf.  He just loves it.”

Keegan Bradley sharing his thoughts about his aunt, Pat Bradley, LPGA Hall of Famer:  “It was a cool moment (PGA Championship win) to share with her.  She always seemed mentally stronger than her opponents when she played and that’s what I try to do.”

Kratzert spoke with Keegan Bradley’s mother Kaye Bradley:  “It’s been an exciting year, I can’t believe it.  Keegan has always been extremely focused.  We gave him the ‘playground’ but he had the drive.”

Huber spoke with PGA Grand Slam of Golf winner Keegan Bradley on playing with Clarke, McIlroy and Schwartzel:  “It was really fun.  I have never played with any of them and playing with all the other major champions was an honor.”

Bradley on his rookie season and chances for Rookie/Player-of-the-Year: “Webb Simpson and Luke Donald are doing a good job of trying to block that from me.  I would be honored to win it.  My goal was to win Rookie-of-the-Year so anything that comes after that’s a bonus.”

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Notes from PGA Grand Slam of Golf

SOUTHAMPTON, BERMUDA - OCTOBER 18: Charl Schwartzel of South Africa, Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland,Darren Clarke of Northern Ireland and Keegan Bradley of the USA with the PGA Grand Slam of Golf trophy before the first round of the PGA Grand Slam of Golf at the Port Royal Golf Course on October 18, 2011 in Southampton, Bermuda. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy and Keegan Bradley are tied at the top of the leaderboard at four under par. The PGA Grand Slam of Golf will continue on TNT on Wednesday, October 19 starting at 4 p.m. ET.

 Professional golf’s four major champions playing in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf:  Charl Schwartzel (2011 Masters), Rory McIlroy (2011 U.S. Open), Darren Clarke (2011 British Open) and Keegan Bradley (2011 PGA Championship)  
TNT’s Jim Huber interviewed Rory McIlroy, Darren Clarke and Charl Schwartzel’s agent, Andrew “Chubby” Chandler, on working with their agent:

McIlroy on Chandler:  “He’s great; he’s seen it all before.”

Clarke on Chandler:  “We’ve shared some great times and some not so great times, but he’s been very, very close to me for a very long time.  He is a huge part of why I have managed to win (a major championship) event.” 

Schwartzel on Chandler:  “I can ask him anything and he is very wise in giving answers outside of golf.  Obviously, he’s very well known in the golf industry, but he is a wise man outside of golf also.”

Huber spoke with Chandler on handling three of his clients at the same time at this tournament:

Chandler: “This isn’t too difficult at this tournament.  This is the reward for what they have done this year and they have done great to get here.  This is the icing on the cake.”

Chandler on McIlroy, Schwartzel and Clarke:  “Two of our young guys are going to be around for awhile and Darren, well, he was the fairytale.”

TNT’s Huber talking with Chandler on the three different personalities of McIlroy, Schwartzel and Clarke:

Chandler:  “They are three very different people.  Charl and Rory are pretty tough competitors and are at the beginning of their careers.  Darren has been there for a long time and has done what he needed to.”

Baker-Finch on Bradley:  “Bradley hasn’t struggled on these greens at all.  He’s been spot on.  He’s the first player to win a championship using a long putter.”  

TNT’s Huber speaking with Jerry McIlroy' father, Jerry McIlroy on his son’s physical stature these days: “He’s lost some of that ‘puppy fat’.”

TNT’s Kratzert interviewed Darren Clarke on being the oldest Open champion since 1967 and how he feels playing with the younger guys at the Grand Slam:

Clarke:  “I feel like the oldest since 1967 today!  It’s fantastic playing with these guys.  Rory was in my foundation that I have at home when he was 13, and to think here I am now playing with him is great.”

Clarke on McIlroy’s strengths:  “One of his strengths is that he is a fantastic driver of the golf ball.  Maybe when he gets a little older he may figure out other ways to play the golf course, but at the minute he is playing to his strengths all the time.”

Clarke on his career and finally winning his first major championship - the British Open Championship:  “Golf was becoming increasingly frustrating, I put the hours in but the results weren’t coming.  I have a huge love/hate relationship with the game.  Sometimes it’s a lot more hate than love but that particular week, it was a lot of love.”  

Monday, October 17, 2011

Live Coverage set for PGA Grand Slam of Golf

TNT and tee off the 2011 PGA Grand Slam of Golf as four of the world’s top professional golfers hit the greens at the Port Royal Golf Course in Bermuda to determine who’s the best of the best in the 36-hole event.  To compete in this elite tournament golfers must be a major championship winner and this year’s field features Charl Schwartzel (2011 Masters winner), Rory McIlroy (2011 U.S. Open winner), Darren Clarke (2011 British Open winner) and Keegan Bradley (2011 PGA Championship winner). TNT’s coverage will air on Tues., October 18 from 4 – 7 p.m. ET/PT and Wed., October 19 from 4 – 8 p.m. ET/PT, with exclusive early round coverage on both days of the tournament on

TNT’s event coverage will feature veteran golf announcers in the booth, including Verne Lundquist (play-by-play), 1991 British Open winner Ian Baker-Finch (analyst), Billy Kratzert (course reporter) and Jim Huber (essayist/reporter) who will provide on-air analysis and commentary. 

This year marks the 21st consecutive year that the PGA Grand Slam of Golf tournament will be presented by Turner Sports and the 13th year that it will air on TNT.  This is also the fifth year that the PGA Grand Slam of Golf has been played in Bermuda and it’s the third year at the Port Royal Golf Course located in Southampton Parish.  Port Royal Golf Course recently completed its renovations that extended the layout by 281 yards for a total of 6,842 yards making it the longest golf course in Bermuda.   

Norman rips Tiger, questions pick by Couples

Greg Norman must be trying to provide bulletin board material for Tiger Woods, Fred Couples, and the U.S. Presidents Cup team. With his most recent comments, he stated his belief that Woods should not have been picked to the U.S. team. 

"I can understand the name of a Tiger Woods and his history of what he's done on the golf course," Norman said. "But I pick the guys who I think are ready to get in there and play and have performed to the highest levels leading up to it."

"I just don't think he's swinging the golf club the way he used to when he won all those major championships," Norman said. "He's a different player out there nowadays. He even looks tied up. He looks more confined. I know what it takes to have freedom in a golf swing and I just don't think he's technically in the right position to do what he used to do."

While it's true Woods is going through swing changes that do not appear 100% comfortable at the moment, Norman must have a short memory. At the President's Cup in 2009, with Norman captaining the Internationals, Woods went 5-0 in leading the United States to victory. 

Its kind of shocking that someone like Norman, who has only won 2 majors, and choked away more than any other golfer in history, would continue to bash Woods. It seems he would understand the difficulty in staying on top year after year but apparently not. 

Fred Couples, U.S. captain, defended his pick of Woods. "I have no problem with Greg. He can say whatever he wants, but I'm not really into that. I play golf with my clubs," Couples said. "Robert Allenby is his pick, and Aaron Baddeley, and they're Australians and I think they're great picks. But I think I can sit here and say Robert Allenby hasn't won a tournament in 10 years."

"The truth is, Tiger Woods is the greatest or the second-greatest player to ever play, and he's going to be down in Australia, and I hope he plays up to his capabilities," Couples said. "But I think Tiger is used to getting picked on, and it's irrelevant to me."

Norman is certainly adding fuel to the fire and helping build anticipation and interest in the Presidents Cup by making comments about the opposing team. Come November, a serious battle will be taking place in Melbourne.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Golf Betting Odds: Open

In shocking news, Tiger Woods is favored at the Open even though he hasn't played consistently in two years.

Notable player betting odds include:
Tiger Woods: 6-1
Kevin Na: 25-1
Paul Casey: 25-1
Ernie Els: 28-1
Louis Oosthuizen: 28-1
Patrick Cantlay: 40-1
Rickie Barnes: 80-1
David Duval: 100-1 Open pairings and tee times

The marquee group of Tiger Woods, Louis Oosthuizen, and the top amateur in the world, Patrick Cantlay, will tee off at 3:10 Eastern time.

Other notable groups include, wait a second.....there are no other notable groups.

Full tee times and pairings

Sunday, October 2, 2011

First a 16, now a whiff for Kevin Na

Kevin Na always seems to provide some interest while playing. He whiffed a drive Saturday on purpose because his swing didn't feel right. Fortunately for him, he wasn't penalized.

Earlier this year, he made headlines when he scored a 16 in entertaining fashion.

Tiger Woods fires course record 62 at Medalist

Although only a practice round, Tiger Woods shot a course record 62 at his new home course Medalist, which was designed by Greg Norman. He made 10 birdies and the round included a back-nine 29 with seven birdies.

Woods surely had to enjoy tearing up the course after the designer recently predicted he would never win another major.

"I've been practicing very hard up at Medalist and playing as much as I possibly can,'' Woods said. "It's something I hadn't done all summer. My training sessions are great, my explosiveness has come back through my training. Sean has come down a few times and we've worked on my game.

Woods will get back to the real deal starting Thursday at the Open.