PGA Tour: WGC:MatchPlay: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 27 Mar - 18:26

1).The "Match Play" returns to Texas and Austin CC's Pete Dye design for the fourth time - and it's the 5th time the tournament has started off with three rounds of round-robin "Group Play", the first time having been played at San Francisco's Harding Park.

2).And: In all those first round matches (4 x 32 = 128, I think) only 8 golfers have lost their first match and progressed out of Group play, according to the AP's Doug Ferguson - and he's always right. An amazing stat.
(That's not good news for King Louis and Ben An as I press "send".)

3).Just a word about Paul Casey, and his Valspar win last week. When he won last year, he made clutch putts to hold off T.Woods and others, having earned a deserved reputation, in PGA Tour Play at least, for failing to close the deal. But now he's successfully defended his title and seems fit and healthy enough, with fantastic ball-striking and apparently a much sunnier outlook on life, to add further titles as he moves through his forties. Now comfortably inside the top 40 career money earners.
Pretty good to see.

4).Two or three neat stat's for this week, for those in today's field only:
~Only four are survivors of the inaugural WGC: MatchPlay in 1999.
And you guessed 'em all: Furyk, Mickelson, Westwood & Woods.

5).Top ten in terms of matches played:
43: Woods
42: Poulter
41: Sergio
40: Casey
38: Furyk, Phil
37: Rors
36: Kuchar, Westwood
33: Day

6).And top ten in terms of matches won:
33: Woods
27: Poults
25: Casey
24: Kooch, Phil, Rors
22: Day, Sergio
20: Bubba
19: Louis, Furyk

7).There's an "Opposite Field" tournament in the Dominican Republic this week - Paul Dunne returns, hoping to improve on his T5 last year. And McDowell will hope for a strong finish after he rather squandered a decent start last week.

8).And the Champions Tour and web.com Tours resume their seasons.

9).NBC TV is televising seven events in a row, no Johnny Miller and, for the most part anyway (I haven't heard him except on Golf Channel's coverage), no Peter Jacobsen.
Neither were my favourite but there seems to be little rhythm in the commentary teams we're left with, especially last week with no Maltbie.
Notah Begay slows everything down - is he really the best they can do? - and the team don't seem to know how to deal with Azinger, who I like a lot. And Bones McKay is terrific!

10).Tiger Woods tees off at 2.00 p.m. Eastern Time, 6.00 p.m. in Ickenham.
And TV coverage begins at 2.00 p.m. Fancy that. Tiger TV.

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Post by I'm never wrong on Wed 27 Mar - 20:09

Thanks Kwini. Been watching it on and off this afternoon. I do like the course, as it’s not straight up and down. Lots of elevation changes. Plus, Poulter won.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 27 Mar - 20:23

Europe Ryder Cuppers continuing good form.
Played 6
Won 5
Lost 1 (Noren, Pity he didn't get BDeC)

More to come with Rose well up, and others with their noses in front.


Along the same theme, I really fancied Justin Thomas for this, but not going so well at the moment.

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Post by I'm never wrong on Wed 27 Mar - 20:27

Whatever Noren did today I don’t think he could have won. BdeC had some luck/skill today.

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Post by NedB-H on Wed 27 Mar - 22:52

Very good day for Europe all round until Westwood and Fitz bottled their matches late on.

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Post by GPB on Wed 27 Mar - 23:07

Shane Lowry losing to Sergio at the moment

With Justin Harding, Bjerregaard, Furyk, Na winning (and Putnam leading), Lowry is certainly vulnerable of falling out the Top 50 and missing out on the Masters.

Since his two nice tournaments in the Middle East (Win at Abu Dhabi, T12 in Dubai), Lowry has completely whiffed with respect to OWGR points. Three MCs at Pebble, Bay Hill, and Players, and T62 in Mexico.

If he goes winless in the group stage and gets no OWGR points, I thinks he falls out of the Top 50

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Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 27 Mar - 23:39

GPB wrote:Shane Lowry losing to Sergio at the moment

With Justin Harding, Bjerregaard, Furyk, Na winning (and Putnam leading),  Lowry is certainly vulnerable of falling out the Top 50 and missing out on the Masters.

Since his two nice tournaments in the Middle East (Win at Abu Dhabi, T12 in Dubai), Lowry has completely whiffed with respect to OWGR points.  Three MCs at Pebble, Bay Hill, and Players, and T62 in Mexico.

If he goes winless in the group stage and gets no OWGR points, I thinks he falls out of the Top 50


It's alright GPB, I think Shane still has a couple of Americans to play . . . . #famouslastwords Run

Am I right that the ERC went 11-1, effingNoren messing things up?

Yup, shame about those Lindrick boys.

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Post by AlciG on Thu 28 Mar - 9:00

Hi Kwini... do you also have the top 10 in percentages of matches won?

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Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 28 Mar - 9:50

Sorry Alci.
But of those with more than 20 matches played, I'm sure Woods would be #1.

McIlroy's record is pretty good, Casey & Day too, but the introduction of "halves" a couple of years ago rather muddies the waters.

Older generation like Toms & DLIII might have decent records, I'll have a look, but maybe for another day!

EDIT: No doubt Ogilvy's %age is pretty good also.


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Post by AlciG on Thu 28 Mar - 11:14

kwinigolfer wrote:Sorry Alci.
But of those with more than 20 matches played, I'm sure Woods would be #1.

McIlroy's record is pretty good, Casey & Day too, but the introduction of "halves" a couple of years ago rather muddies the waters.

Older generation like Toms & DLIII might have decent records, I'll have a look, but maybe for another day!

No worries buddy.

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Post by McLaren on Thu 28 Mar - 13:47

Anyone else surprised to see Westwood in the WGC matchplay. I just assumed he had wound things down and was somewhere outside the top 100.
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Post by I'm never wrong on Thu 28 Mar - 14:22

McLaren wrote:Anyone else surprised to see Westwood in the WGC matchplay. I just assumed he had wound things down and was somewhere outside the top 100.
So the odd million Euros in November don't count then Mac?

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Post by Roller_Coaster on Thu 28 Mar - 14:24

McLaren wrote:Anyone else surprised to see Westwood in the WGC matchplay. I just assumed he had wound things down and was somewhere outside the top 100.

Yes and so did I.


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Post by McLaren on Thu 28 Mar - 15:18

I'm never wrong wrote:
McLaren wrote:Anyone else surprised to see Westwood in the WGC matchplay. I just assumed he had wound things down and was somewhere outside the top 100.
So the odd million Euros in November don't count then Mac?

I know he won sun city but I hadn't realised it had propelled him so high in the rankings. From 2017 through 2018 he had been sliding down the order at a steady pace. Nothing unexpected for a player at his career stage. Good to see him still hanging about.
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Post by I'm never wrong on Thu 28 Mar - 16:42

I don’t know if it was still affecting his golf but he was divorced in 2015 and he said that his golf would take a back seat. He played a lot less and so that may have contributed. But I agree, good to see.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Thu 28 Mar - 17:56

Spieth seems to have found a suitable prescription for getting over his troubles - for one day at least: Kevin Na.

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Post by I'm never wrong on Thu 28 Mar - 18:52

Shot of the day from Tiger. In trouble under branches of a bush. Club reversed and chip onto the green. Hole the putt for a par and a half.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 29 Mar - 1:00

Another pretty good day for the Europeans in Texas, with Franny, Sergio, Rory & Stenson among the ten who have won both their matches.

And a terrific start in the Dominican for Paul Dunne, tied for the lead and hoping to improve on his excellent finish there last year.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 29 Mar - 1:26

I don't know that anyone is certain to progress, but this lot definitely won't:
Cam Smith
Matsuyama
Reavie
Pepperell
Grillo
Lewis
Koepka
Fitzpatrick
Bradley
Knox
Simpson
Kodaira
SW Kim
Ben An
Day
Mickelson
Wise
Bubba
Lowry
Reed

So that's at least 20 potentially unmotivated pros packing their bags; bring back the straight knock-out!
None of the US Ryder Cup Team now in the strongest position in their groups to advance - except Capt Furyk and VC Kuchar.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 29 Mar - 13:50

McDowell getting it in gear in the DR, -6 for his first 9 holes.
If it's true that he's looking at rejuvenating his career, a good result this week would be a good start.

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Post by Shotrock on Fri 29 Mar - 18:14

I haven't been able to watch any of this, but from looking at scores online during the past couple of days is sure looks like the Irishman McIlroy is the man to bet on. Look forward to watching this weekend. Austin is a fine town and I've heard nothing but great things from friends who have played at ACC.

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Post by Shotrock on Fri 29 Mar - 18:14

I haven't been able to watch any of this, but from looking at scores online during the past couple of days is sure looks like the Irishman McIlroy is the man to bet on. Look forward to watching this weekend. Austin is a fine town and I've heard nothing but great things from friends who have played at ACC.

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Post by Diggers on Fri 29 Mar - 19:06

Tiger v Rory tomorrow, should be fun.

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Post by Shotrock on Fri 29 Mar - 19:21

My money's on Rory.

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Post by Diggers on Fri 29 Mar - 19:54

I’d back Rory, other than he’s had 3 great rounds and is due a flat one at some point. Probably not tomorrow though.

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Post by GPB on Fri 29 Mar - 23:20

Lowry is definitely on the Masters bubble

I think he will pass Olesen.

But he is going to be passed by Kisner & Harding for sure to put at #49.  Bjeergaard will pass him if he wins in the Round of 16.

So that puts him at #50 if LB wins tomorrow morning.

Sungjae Im #58 can pass him if he wins in the Dominican Republic.

Kevin Na is also still in the equation should he advance from his group.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 0:30

Sweet Sixteen:
8 x Europeans
4 x US
4 x Internationals

Damn those Tour comparisons and inflated owgrs.

Hopefully Rosey will take care of Na and business for Shane.

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Post by GPB on Sat 30 Mar - 2:34

Last time I checked, the format is 18 hole match play.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 9:53

GPB wrote:Last time I checked, the format is 18 hole match play.

Well spotted, GPB.
It's also a WGC and the US guys have home course advantage.


Moving on, big test for the 2019 model of Rory today; would think it must help that they're going out first, a few anti-Rose wahoos in the crowd yesterday in his evening match w/Woodland.

Cool and quite windy for Sunday. Hope Rory will still be playing.


And: A sporty 64 from McDowell in the Dominican, up to T7, three strokes off Sungjai I'm lead, and two behind Paul Dunne in T2.
Good rounds also from Blixt, Power, Detry & Freddie Jac.

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Post by NedB-H on Sat 30 Mar - 10:57

Think the numbers are a complete reversal of last year when it was 8 Americans and 4 Europeans. Not sure there’s too much to read into it other than the tournament has fallen at a time when a few Europeans have hit good form. 3 winners in the last 3 weeks and all of them qualifying guys for the knockout stage. Amazing that it was two sudden death playoffs from being 10 Euros through though.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 11:43

True enough, Ned, but Europe has more than punched its weight at the MatchPlay over the years.
And getting 7 of the Paris team into the last 16 is pretty interesting. Plus, as you say, two more unlucky losers.

Woods the only US RC survivor, which emphasises how dismal he is in RC's.

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Post by GPB on Sat 30 Mar - 14:50

OWGR and PD is telling me that Shane Lowry passed Sneds in the OWGR, so the stars really have to align against Shane for him to fall out of the Top 50:

Bjerregaard has to win this morning
Na has win his two matches today, and win one match tomorrow (at least third place)
Sungjae Im has to win at the Punta Cana event.

Justin Harding has clinched his 11th hour invite to the Masters.  Shane and Sungjae Im can join him.

Bolton has 85 players already qualified for the Masters (and expected to play), so it looks like 87 or 88 players in the field.  VTO winner gets an invite too, should he not already be invited.


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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 14:55

GPB,
That would be a very small field - historically so I would think.

PS: Rory needs to start making some putts.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 15:41

Rory's in Tiger's pocket right now. And Franny's run of Match Play wins will surely extend to 9.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 17:07

There ought to be a Special Prosecutor hired to figure out why Rory is throwing this match away.

Almost all the Europeans going down the drain, potentially all four Americans to win. Fair play to them.

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Post by NedB-H on Sat 30 Mar - 17:10

Rory’s play there on 16 one of the most moronic things I’ve seen from a professional golfer. Looking like only 2 Europeans in the quarters...

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Post by Born Slippy on Sat 30 Mar - 17:11

Only Rory could hit a 395 yard drive, watch his opponent take 3 to get 30 feet from the hole and not make his opponent hit another ball!

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Post by Diggers on Sat 30 Mar - 17:30

Told you Rory was due a bad one. Handed the win over gift wrapped today.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 17:36

Diggers wrote:Told you Rory was due a bad one. Handed the win over gift wrapped today.

And on top of that, Barnsley caught a bit of a crab . . . . . PUP

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Post by Diggers on Sat 30 Mar - 17:40

Yep, all helps, Kwini. Luton home and hosed.

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Post by Diggers on Sat 30 Mar - 17:57

The Eurostar protester who has caused hours of delays, should have won over a few thousand undecided. What a tool.

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Post by NedB-H on Sat 30 Mar - 18:18

Good day for all of us League One fans, apart from Wycombe-supporting ones... ouch

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Post by GPB on Sat 30 Mar - 18:22

PD has tweeted that DJ will be #1 on Monday, but Rose will re-take the #1 ranking going into Masters week.

https://twitter.com/VC606/status/1112046275309064193

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 18:30

NedB-H wrote:Good day for all of us League One fans, apart from Wycombe-supporting ones... ouch


Good result for you Ned.


Further to GPB's post, hoping that Shane has lined Molinari's pocket incenting him to beat shanana.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 19:42

Northern Ireland made a mess vs Woods, but McDowell having another super round in the DR - tied for the lead late in Round 3.
Dunners with another decent round in progess.

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Post by Diggers on Sat 30 Mar - 19:52

Fingers crossed for a Sergio v Tiger semi, a bit of genuine animosity always spices things up.

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Post by NedB-H on Sat 30 Mar - 20:24

If we didn’t know it already.... Sergio is an idiot.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 30 Mar - 20:27

Weird thing is, I think his wife's family comes from Austin, they must wonder what goes on when Sergio doesn't get his own way at home . . . .

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Post by GPB on Sat 30 Mar - 20:44

Yes Sergio's family is from Austin. his father played (American) Football for the University of Texas (which is in Austin)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marty_Akins

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Post by I'm never wrong on Sat 30 Mar - 21:03

Came in just after it happened, but what?

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PGA Tour: WGC:MatchPlay: Notes from the Ballwasher Empty Re: PGA Tour: WGC:MatchPlay: Notes from the Ballwasher

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