PGA Tour: Presidents Cup Week/Weak: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 06 Oct 2015, 8:08 pm

1).All PGA Tour eyes will be on a Jack Nicklaus course in South Korea this week as Team USA prepares to take on the "Internationals" in the Presidents Cup.
Just as in recent Ryder Cups the USA Team is far superior on paper than the opposition.
Unlike for recent Ryder Cups, enthusiasm for the Internationals, even in Captain Nick Price's words, can be muted and he's suggested some of his Team are ambivalent about an event they view as being loaded in one direction, with "one guy (Tour Commissioner Finchem) controlling both sides. That may be something that needs to change."
Regardless, Capt Nick has successfully lobbied for a change in the match format & scoring intended make for a closer contest - he clearly thinks this is just one improvement that is required and seems to be expressing the view of previous Captains that this is a crucial match. There will be "repercussions" if the match is once again one-sided, "This is a very, very, very important Presidents Cup."

2).Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of Presidents Cup competition to Ryder Cup fans is the composition of the American Team, and some of their pairings. Chris Kirk is the only US Team Member who has not played either Ryder or Presidents Cup before; Bill Haas is the only other American playing who hasn't played Ryder Cup.

Furyk has been replaced by JB Holmes who returns to US Team action for the first time since 2008.
Schwartzel is caught a bug to go with his jet lag and not playing full practice rounds yet, Scott has ligament damage in a digit (terrific), but Oosthuizen says he's fit. SangMoon Bae was last seen being fitted for National Service fatigues, lucky boy!
And that's it. TV coverage here will be either side of midnight so most Americans will miss most of the action, at least for Thursday and Friday play. Cue "if a tree falls in a forest" funnies.

3).The 2015/2016 PGA Tour season kicks off next week in California's Napa Valley which has been blighted by earthquakes and forest fires these past few months - and that's before tournament host Johnny Miller roars in to town. Upcoming 2015 tournaments with start date:
Oct 15th: Frys.com Open, Napa, California
Oct 22nd: "Las Vegas"
Oct 29th: CIMB, Malaysia
Remember, remember the 5th of November: WGC-HSBC Champions, Shanghai. Also Sandersons Farms Championship in Mississippi, fireworks and dead chickens in equal number, no doubt.
Nov 12th: Mayakoba, Mexico
Nov 19th: McGladrey Classic, Sea Island, Georgia

4).50 PGA Tour cards were distributed following last week's web.com Tour Championship and about 30% of those went to non-Americans including Grillo, Thomas Aiken, Iwata, Lahiri and Rod Pampling.
Among Europeans, Sweden's Henrik Norlander got through comfortably while Brian Davis showed his true colours and just about squeaked through after he had comprehensively failed to take control of his own destiny.
Gonzalo F'dez lost his card following a series of mostly self-inflicted mishaps and has no "status" on next year's Tour, begging the question: Whither Gonzo?
Leicester City's Greg Eason fell short in a valiant effort (back to the web.com for him) and Marcel Siem skunked outathere with no official money and a pretty ignominious month of golf. Another year in Europe presumably for Marcel.

5).Other "Notables" who fell short include Andres Romero, Baddeley, Points, Byrd, Merrick, Herron, Vaughn Taylor, Gainey, Jhonny Vegas and Rollins - Past Champion status only for them.
While three guys I expected to enjoy prosperous Tour careers also fell short, Scott Langley, Billy Hurley (has anyone had a worse two months than him?) and Luke Guthrie. They have conditional status courtesy of finishing in 126th - 150th place in FedEx points, some consolation but probably only 15-ish starts plus sponsor freebies.
Seeing the plight of these "veterans" will doubtless cause established Tour members to have an even closer look at their schedule for '15/'16 - front-load the events you commit to if you have any sense. Next week's Frys advance "commitments" suggest many are taking that advice as the field looks strong, led by "British Masters" Casey and McIlroy who clearly got lost on their way to Woburn.

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Post by GPB on Tue 06 Oct 2015, 9:32 pm

Prime Time golf for me Kwini in the central time zone.  I like it.

Got to think Grillo, Kizzire, and Aiken are the pre season favorites for Rookie of the Year.

ICYMI, Lahiri is not eligible to be Rookie of the Year.  Because he played 7 PGAT events this year.  Kelly Kraft is not eligible either, because he played 8 events a few years ago.

IMO, Lahiri should not be eligible, because he is already a World Class player.  Eligible to play the HSBC and most likely will be in the top 50 at year end to play in the Masters.

But Kelly Kraft should be eligible as he is not a world class player (and never had a PGATour Card).

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Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 06 Oct 2015, 10:58 pm

Aiken is so bloody inconsistent, the sort of guy who's almost as likely to win by five as miss five cuts in a row.
And don't have much of a clue if Kizzire is Duval or Sim.
Fancy Grillo to do well though, key for him will be planning his schedule in the context of end of year attractions in "Europe", thus retaining his position in the first reshuffle.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 06 Oct 2015, 11:09 pm

Terrific!

http://www.golfdigest.com/story/team-usa-has-headcovers-with-the-declaration-of-independence-on-them?mbid=nl_100615_daily_hitlist&CNDID=25665405&spMailingID=8132579&spUserID=OTA2NDc1MDkyNzUS1&spJobID=780779911&spReportId=NzgwNzc5OTExS0

Perhaps this was Ben Crenshaw's idea?

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Post by GPB on Tue 06 Oct 2015, 11:10 pm

I think Grillo can see that 6-7 Million dollar tournaments every week are far more lucrative than one ~10 Million bonus pool in Dubai.

I don't expect him to keep his EuroTour card.

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Post by super_realist on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 6:46 am

I don't think there is a more pathetic tournament on either tour than the Presidents Cup, it's worse than the Chevron and the Nedbank and worse than even the lowliest tour stop in Europe.

A truly terrible exhibition, in which even the players seem disinterested. Well over due for retiral from the schedule.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 10:17 am

An opening foursomes pairing of Bubba Watson and JB Holmes won't excite you then super??!!

Bill Haas, Kirk, Schwartzel & SangMoon Bae missing out from the first five foursome match-ups.

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Post by sirbenson on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 11:15 am

DJ and Spieth!!!!!

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Post by Shotrock on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 3:48 pm

Pathetic? Hardly ... if you judge a tournament by the number of people who both pay to get in and watch it on TV. Which, of course, is the very foundation upon which professional golf is built.

I'm guessing there will be larger crowds on the first three holes than at many ET or USPGA events.

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Post by pedro on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 6:45 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:Terrific!

http://www.golfdigest.com/story/team-usa-has-headcovers-with-the-declaration-of-independence-on-them?mbid=nl_100615_daily_hitlist&CNDID=25665405&spMailingID=8132579&spUserID=OTA2NDc1MDkyNzUS1&spJobID=780779911&spReportId=NzgwNzc5OTExS0

Perhaps this was Ben Crenshaw's idea?
Fantastic to wear in a country divided by war and occupied by the US in decades hereafter. I guess they're having a couple of meatheads from the local US army base stretchmarching around the first tee as well, parading the amendment granting them right to carry weapons.
Had they worn it in Britain it would have made more sense though. Nauseating nevertheless. vomit

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 7:10 pm

There's still the feeling that this is not much more than a friendly, at least as far as the US and its media is concerned, though plenty of angst that the format has changed slightly.
Some headlines/quotes that you don't see during Ryder Cup week:

golfchannel.com: "Matchups Don't Deliver Expected Drama". What? Just because Day and Spieth are not playing each other?? Moronic article from Rex Hoggard; glad Nick Price retorted: "I'm not going to put matchups out there that the media wants."

golfchannel.com: Jordan Spieth reckons: "More smiles at Presidents Cup than Ryder." No sh1t Sherlock . . . . (talking of which it's nice to see Holmes and Watson reunited; hope their partnership is better than "Mr.Holmes" which I recently went to see).

pgatour.com: Quoting Spieth again: "Spieth says he can tell the difference in Team Rooms, 'Here we feel like we're starting ahead'".

pgatour.com quoting Lahiri: "I think it's great to have many rookies on this Team. We haven't experienced losses. We're all fearless."

etc, etc.
Thank goodness for Nick Price; Hadn't realised that he retains British citizenship, wonder if Tony Jacklin knew that? With McNulty claiming Irish citizenship and he and Tony Johnstone both living in leafy London suburbia, perhaps some Ryder Cup mentality will rub off on them? So far, so good, but not holding my breath that it will be truly competitive. Hope so though.

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Post by Shotrock on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 7:33 pm

Angst about the slight format change? That's not the "US and its Media" I've experienced this past week.  

I, too, hope for a close event and have a hunch the "International Squad" will be far more competitive than many imagine. Would love to see another finish like the Solheim Cup. I bet a lot more putts will be given outside Pettersen's circle of friendship range.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 7:56 pm

Captain Jay didn't support a change for instance: "Who would want to change anything when you're on a roll?'
And St.Zach: "Probably not to our liking as far as the points and format having been changed."

Regardless, interesting to hear DC and DLIII agree last week that ALL Ryder Cup competitors are read the riot act before the Matches, including don't pick your ball up unless you're 100% sure that it's been given. (Perhaps that started after Peter Jacobsen picked up at Oak Hill in a fourball with Faxon?) Wonder if similar instructions were given by Juli Inkster?

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Post by Shotrock on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 8:03 pm

You and I have a different interpretation of "angst", that's for sure.

I guessing Cap'n Inkster did not. Pettersen (and Hull) played the US team like a drum on that hole. Won that battle but thankfully lost the war.

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Post by Davie on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 8:12 pm

Still bitter about Pettersen? You are almost as bad as Welsh rugby supporters

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 8:17 pm

Happily Jacobsen lost both . . . . just another mindless Jake's Take.

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Post by Shotrock on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 8:17 pm

Bitter ... No, really more entertained by her post-event dance.

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Post by GPB on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 4:16 am

super_realist wrote:I don't think there is a more pathetic tournament on either tour than the Presidents Cup, it's worse than the Chevron and the Nedbank and worse than even the lowliest tour stop in Europe.

A truly terrible exhibition, in which even the players seem disinterested. Well over due for retiral from the schedule.

The Prez Cup probably had more spectators on the first tee than the entire gate at Abu Dhabi, Qatar, and Dubai earlier this year.

I can understand why Euros have no interest in this event, but to label it as pathetic sounds like the Fox and the Sour Grapes.

This is the biggest golf event ever in Korea (which admittedly is not saying much) but like it or not Korea is an emerging market in golf.  Sang Moon Bae has as many wins on the PGATour as Lee Westwood.  and KJ Choi has more wins than Westwood, Poulter, and Casey combined.

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Post by super_realist on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 6:51 am

GPB wrote:
super_realist wrote:I don't think there is a more pathetic tournament on either tour than the Presidents Cup, it's worse than the Chevron and the Nedbank and worse than even the lowliest tour stop in Europe.

A truly terrible exhibition, in which even the players seem disinterested. Well over due for retiral from the schedule.

The Prez Cup probably had more spectators on the first tee than the entire gate at Abu Dhabi, Qatar, and Dubai earlier this year.

I can understand why Euros have no interest in this event, but to label it as pathetic sounds like the Fox and the Sour Grapes.

This is the biggest golf event ever in Korea (which admittedly is not saying much) but like it or not Korea is an emerging market in golf.  Sang Moon Bae has as many wins on the PGATour as Lee Westwood.  and KJ Choi has more wins than Westwood, Poulter, and Casey combined.

Who cares about the wins of Choi or Bae? It's got nothing to do with this tournament being scheisse.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 1:43 pm

Not the first day Nick Price was hoping for - five fourballs Friday and a repeat of Thursday's 4-1 dusting could take the "compete" out of the competition.

And Rickie Fowler actually won a match! Extraordinary.

There may well have been huge crowds but most of the spectators seemed to be wearing two flags, the US and the International symbol. Tough to create a home team advantage when the so-called fans identify so closely with the opposition. That truly is "pathetic"; don't think it would go down too well at Millwall or Anfield, or even Ibrox.

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Post by Shotrock on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 3:23 pm

Great first day for the Yanks! Keep it up.


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Post by super_realist on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 3:31 pm

Shotrock wrote:Great first day for the Yanks! Keep it up.


It's like Jeffrey Dammer playing with a corpse, always has been. The only competitive thing is who is more apathetic.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 7:46 pm

Nobel Prize for Literature for that one super_; but the US loves nothing more than to roll over a weak opponent, which means they sometimes take victory for granted. It's called the Dick Cheney syndrome.

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Post by Davie on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 7:57 pm

Maybe the ROW team should refuse a few two foot gimmes just to spice it up a bit

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Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 8:42 pm

Good to see Rory @ Windsor Park; hope he has plenty to celebrate.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 4:13 am

Halfway through Day 2 and just the faintest sign of a twitch from one of Jeffrey Dahmer's corpses . . . . . .

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 4:26 am

Shock, horror, Phil Mickelson in a Rules violation resulting in the US Team going from AS on the 7th tee to 2 Down on the 8th tee. Never heard of that one but Suzann Pettersen trying to contact Phil to console him.

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Post by Davie on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 7:27 am

TeamUSA should demand ROW conceded the match immediately laughing

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Post by Bob_the_Job on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 9:08 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Shock, horror, Phil Mickelson in a Rules violation resulting in the US Team going from AS on the 7th tee to 2 Down on the 8th tee. Never heard of that one but Suzann Pettersen trying to contact Phil to console him.

To be fair to Figjam, it's quite an unusual rule.
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Post by raycastleunited on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 10:43 am

I'm not sure how the fans can really get behind such a fabricated thing as a "rest of the world" team. Not surprising if the Koreans are struggling to passionately support a bunch of Africans.

To be fair, you could say the same about the French, Germans and Brits in the Ryder Cup, but at least we share some geography.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 11:08 am

Bob,
Agreed, never heard of it before, but he was a very Silly Philly to have had that ball in his bag to start with. The double whammy must be just about unprecedented - and unfair.
Much more competitive today, or at least it was until I fell asleep.

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Post by LadyPutt on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 11:14 am

Sorry but I've not watched any of this - just can't get into it. What did Phil do?
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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 12:09 pm

Phil used a different type of ball on the Par-5 7th hole.
He realised as he walked down the fairway that he might have broken a rule and checked with the walking official who said you can't do that.
With that, I'll hand you over to golfchannel.com as the whole thing is way too arcane for moi:

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/mickelson-team-loses-hole-twice/?cid=golfchannel_majorshomepage_presidents_cup_latestnews_position_2_link_1

So Phil and Zach Johnson were penalized twice, as the commentator extrapolated, "you can't be dormie any more", because you could lose two holes on every hole.

Ultimately it seems Phil and St.Zach were penalized the extra hole because the walking official also didn't know the rule (in common with almost everyone else) and gave the US Team bad advice.

At this stage, apparently Suzann Pettersen should have contacted Nick Price and agreed just a one-hole penalty.

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Post by beninho on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 12:23 pm

I watched some this morning, and it was pretty good. Some may not care about it. But its good to have different events played.

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Post by Davie on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 12:58 pm

The only mistake made was Phat Phil not playing out the hole with the ball that was in contravention of the rules. If he had birdied with that ball he would have halved the hole with Day(?) then the one hole penalty would have been applied at the end of the hole, so making them only one down.

By picking up, and Day (if it WAS him, I forget) birdieing the hole, ROW won the hole then the extra 1 hole penalty was applied (correctly)

Schoolboy error by FIGJAM - surely they play this one-ball rule in pretty much all pro events?

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Post by pedro on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 1:17 pm

raycastleunited wrote:

To be fair, you could say the same about the French, Germans and Brits in the Ryder Cup, but at least we share some geography.
And history. And culture. And politics. And laws. And economy. And looks. And women. censored

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 2:18 pm

Davie, Trouble is he asked the Rules Official what to do and he said Phil had forfeited the hole. Which was incorrect (but apparently wouldn't be in Ryder Cup where the rules are applied differently).

Phil was stupid to have that ball in his bag in the first place; after that Murphy's Law applied to the max.

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Post by GPB on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 2:13 am

Interesting comment from Branden Grace.  Said he attended the Prez Cup in South Africa in 2003, and it inspired him to take the game more seriously and become a professional golfer.

I can understand why Europeans do not think the Prez Cup is worthwhile.  Aussies, Saffers etc don't give a Rats bum about the Ryder Cup.  Its insular thinking, no matter how you spin it.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 3:37 am

GPB,
The thing that's tough to get used to is the extent to which the Pres Cup is contrived. All a Finchem property, signed, sealed and delivered by him.
Interesting comment by Hale Irwin this afternoon that Jay Haas was never consulted on the points-structure change. Can't imagine that happening for the RC.

Most Aussies & SAfricans are pretty envious of the Ryder Cup, not for Europe, not for the States, just the competition. It would be fantastic for all concerned if the Pres Cup turned into something as competitive. Maybe it will.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 1:58 pm

Honours even for Saturday's play - didn't survive the four-balls but the foursomes were pretty entertaining; King Louis and His Grace were dominant but each of the other matches must have left one team or both scratching their heads.
And the next "International" venue for the Pres Cup, in 2019, will be in Victoria. Kinda surprising it hasn't been to Japan yet and it goes Down Under for the third time before visiting South Africa twice. Ernie Els must be fuming.

Good field for next week's Frys.com in Napa, and Presidents Cup contestants Bowditch, Kirk, Matsuyama and Schwartzel are "committed"; no Paul Casey after he was an original entrant, but Justin Rose and Rory will be there, plus a welcome return to action from Freddie Jacobson following his son's illness.

No Brian Davis as he faces the stark reality of life at the arse end of the priority rankings of web.com Finals graduates. Knox, Laird and Greg Owen will be the other British entrants.

Probably an owgr 40+ pointer for the winner, a rich haul for a tournament that's easy to overlook.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 9:14 pm

For those interested, here is confirmation of the Player Eligibility Ranking for the 2015/2016 PGA Tour season:

http://www.pgatour.com/news/2015/pga-tour-priority-ranking.html

Confirmation, among other things, that Allenby, Leonard and Van Pelt have taken their one-time Top 50 career earnings exemption, and that Grace, Lowry, Rodgers and Cameron Smith are taking their places on Tour. But no Danny Willett as reported earlier.
And no Dubuisson, Kaymer, Westwood or Gonzo. Probably one or two others that can now concentrate entirely on the European Tour also.

Anyone with exceptional stamina will find Trevor Immelman's name halfway down the reorder Category of Past Champions, etc. A highly promising career sidetracked by injuries; hope he clambers back but can't see it meself. Still eligible for European Tour though.


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Post by kwinigolfer on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 6:21 am

Not for nothing, as they say, but this is pretty bl00dy exciting! Almost out of Scotch.

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Post by lorus59 on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 7:36 am

Not quite intense as the Ryder Cup but the last day was compelling viewing. Not sure if it was a good idea to put the home rookie in the last match. One of the more experienced payers would have been better. I don't think the European team has much to fear from the US team..

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Post by pedro on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 10:44 am

lorus59 wrote:Not quite intense as the Ryder Cup but the last day was compelling viewing. Not sure if it was a good idea to put the home rookie in the last match. One of the more experienced payers would have been better. I don't think the European team has much to fear from the US team..
Where would you have put him? Had the Internationals been to far behind the last matches wouldn't have mattered anyway. It's a balance. But of course , being only one point behind before the singles there'd be a significant chance it'd come down to the same match.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 2:02 pm

"Compelling" is a good word for that lot lorus, really enjoyed the Singles and too many could'ves, should'ves to count. Which in the end was a good thing.

Whatever line-up you choose, there's no legislating Spieth playing poorly and getting beaten, and Day & Schwartzel not having a "W" between them all week.

Well done to Bill Haas for hitting good shots just when they were needed in the final match, not something he's always been famous for, and coming out party for Brandon Grace.

Not too fond of artificial rocks adorning the course, whatever next??!!


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Post by lorus59 on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 3:32 pm

I think I read that the joining fee is $1 million for that course. Hardly one for the common man (or woman).

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Post by super_realist on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 6:27 pm

Does it have to be?

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Post by raycastleunited on Mon 12 Oct 2015, 10:08 am

Despite all the noise that the President's Cup is a non-event, this thread still has 46 posts on it (47 now!), whereas there are fewer than 20 posts on the British Masters.

Personally, I was much keener to watch the action from Woburn, and didn't catch a minute of the Pres, but then what do I know.

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Post by pedro on Mon 12 Oct 2015, 11:00 am

Well maybe it helps that it's some of the worlds best players in action (And that it was a pretty tight match) - rather than the greenkeepers nightmare (Lowry + The Barnrat)..

But yeah, I was also more interested in the British Masters - but what's there to say?

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Post by Shotrock on Mon 12 Oct 2015, 1:15 pm

Finally watched the replay. Although the top ranked players (Spieth and Day) did not impress much, having a close event really made for excellent viewing. I was not overlay impressed with the layout. Well done USA and top honors go to FIGJAM PHil and Branden Grace. I can only hope the Ryder Cup is this close.

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