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PGA Tour: Shoot Out at River Highlands aka "The Travelers": Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer Tue 18 Jun 2013, 6:17 pm

1).One over par winning a Golf Tournament? Pah! Not this week it won't, doubt if it'll even make the cut at the classically designed TPC River Highlands pitch-and-putt just south of Hartford, Connecticut. No, this week's "Travelers Championship" has just what the touring pros want to see, a short course with generous fairways, receptive and relatively flat greens, eagles and birds a-plenty.

2).But that's for this week, what about last week?
Short story: Classic course which looked fabulous, despite one or two slightly eccentric holes and some very dodgy tee- and pin-placements by the USGA.
For the second Major running, it was the golfer who played best tee to green who won the day, and two views of that from respected players:
Luke Donald:
"I think Adam and Justin have similar games. They're very good tee to green. Occasionally their Achilles heel is the short game and the putting. Sometimes great ball-striking can trump that, even at a US Open." (Especially "at a US Open"?)

And, from Joe Ogilvie (perhaps a journeyman Tour Player but odds on to be Tour Commish one day):
"The two best swings in golf have won the last two Majors." (Some South Africans may quibble with that assessment, but indicative of the esteem with which Justin Rose's golf game is held.)

3).Why wasn't the scoring better at Merion?
Some thoughts as one has seldom seen more misjudgements in approach shots, more short (inside four feet) putts missed.
Did we underestimate the variations in elevation at Merion, as it seemed almost every shot was uphill or downhill? Were players trying to be too perfect in their short-range approaches??
And: Were players trying too hard to follow a poor shot with a great shot instead of, as Andy North reminds listeners every event he covers, "taking their medicine"? Perhaps, especially in Rounds 1 and 2 when high numbers abounded, golfers really believed the course was the pushover the pundits had predicted and felt they couldn't afford a bogey??
I've never seen the hole look so small and the world's best look so tentative on the greens. Donald and Mickelson are fabulous putters but they missed more tiddlers at Merion than they normally would in a season.

4).And what of arguably the "Best Player Not To Win A Major" in the last five years, Tiger Woods?
He'll surely blame his 128 putts but, especially given his mostly stellar play off the tee, shouldn't he be looking at his approach shots, in particular his distance control? He really gave himself very few birdie chances and even holed at least two real snakes. Perhaps that elbow/wrist is really causing trouble and should we expect him to cry off Congressional next week? Wouldn't be surprised.

5).Amidst all the carnage, Hunter Mahan achieved the third-most accurate driving performance of the season so far, hitting 49 fairways in 56 attempts. Hunner was swinging the club as well as he was dressing badly, which is saying something. Despite the gormless facial hair, uncoordinated wardrobe and GolfBoys persona, I enjoy listening to Mahan, talks a lot of sense and seems to have a great relationship with caddie John Wood.

6).And why did all-swing, no-putt Justin Rose triumph? Can part of the answer can be found in a lengthening of his putter, a TaylorMade Spider Blade model? He used it first at the Memorial where he put himself in position to win only to lose so many short putts weak and pushed. Maybe it was brilliant course management that repeatedly put him in position to two putt at worst (although he managed four 3-putts in total). And he holed some long'uns also. Regardless, all credit to him for sussing that putting out.

7).A cynic would say that, if Mickelson played the final six holes of the 2010 Masters as poorly as he did Sunday at Merion, Lee Westwood would have a Masters green jacket.
What is indisputable is that Phil now has six US Open runner-up finishes, curiously considering he's a California Boy, all on East Coast courses, Pinehurst, Shinnecock, 2 x Bethpage, Winged Foot and now Merion. Good news for him is that next year's US Open is at Pinehurst. Bad news is that the next East(-ish) stop after that is 2016 at Oakmont where he has a 47th place finish and a missed cut. Then Shinnecock in 2018 when he'll be 48 and Winged Foot again in 2020. Last best chance perhaps wedged away.

8).Apart from the brilliant youngster from Japan, Hideki Matsuyama, the Top 14 finishers last week were all in the owgr Top 50 when play started, which presumably says that much of the cream rose to the top. 
That won't happen this week in Hartford where the weather will be terrific and the field is as good as one can remember. Not sure why exactly, but probably a sense of urgency from players anxious to secure position for FedEx Play-offs just a few weeks away.
A strong contingent of Americans (Bubba, Keegs, Webbgod, Hunner, Dufner, Rickie, Zach etc) will be there and a good crop of Europeans, led by Justin Rose, Westwood, Harrington (always justifiably popular here), Poulter, Gonzo and Colsaerts.
One attraction of Hartford is that it's a very easy walking course, and there is usually a fair number of young up-and-comers on hand as well as the stars. I'm hoping to see something of Patrick Reed for instance, Tringale, Jonas Blixt's travelling circus, and Sang-Moon Bae. As well as Gonzo and Colsaerts.

9)."Hartford" is a real horses-for-courses event, and Ryan Moore and Mahan have fine records here. It would suit an in-form Tim Clark (as it did last year) and Europeans Brian Davis and Freddie Jac have decent finishes here. Three years ago Justin Rose had the tournament in his pocket following his breakthrough win at Memorial. But he inexplicably collapsed only to rebound a week or so later at Aronomink's AT&T. How does that happen!

10).Finally, but it should really be first, Jarrod Lyle continues his recovery and you can read more about that in Larry Dorman's excellent piece:

http://www.pgatour.com/news/2013/06/18/finally-cancer-free--lyle-sets-timetable-to-return-to-tour-.html

Have said it before and will doubtless say it again, Jarrod Lyle comes across as one of the Tour's really good guys, as well as the funniest. Who knows if he'll ever recapture his form of early last year when it looked as if he'd finally found his feet? But if Lyle comes golfing at a course near you, do yourself a favour and go and follow him. You''ll be laughing within a shot or two.


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Post by GPB Tue 18 Jun 2013, 7:12 pm

Thanks for pointing to the Jarrod Lyle article.  Every time I read something about him, something gets into my eye.

When he does play the Tour again, he should be automatic for Comeback Player of the Year, and maybe even rename it the Jarrod Lyle Comeback Player of the Year.

What does everyone think of Justin's chances this week.  Will he have a MAJOR hangover or will he be competitive?

Personally, I think it is Lee Westwood's week.


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Post by kwinigolfer Tue 18 Jun 2013, 7:38 pm

I'd think it will be very difficult for Rose to win this week.

This is a place I'd think was tailor-made for Poulter but his two efforts so far (24th, 62nd) have been disappointing. Harrington has two top 12's (5th and 11th) in the past three years and he seems to enjoy Hartford.

But I hope you're right to fancy lw1 - I think I'll suggest he does some press-ups to prove it's him.

Russell Knox just in the field from first alternate - he needs to capitalise on some good opportunities.

Rank outsider? Nick O'Hern!

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Post by GPB Tue 18 Jun 2013, 7:49 pm

nm, didn't mean to post

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Post by Shotrock Tue 18 Jun 2013, 9:32 pm

Thanks for the write up Kwin.

Are you going to get to the tournament? If so, look forward to the first-hand accounts.

Good call on the USGA setup for Merion. It's obvious to me that those in charge seem to think a "harder" test of golf is always a "better" test of golf. I'm not convinced. (But am in no way demeaning Justin's very impressive and well-deserved victory!)

Wonderful news about Jarrod Lyle.

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Post by kwinigolfer Tue 18 Jun 2013, 10:19 pm

Hi Sr,

I kinda thought that the subtlety of some of Merion's holes, with changes of elevation on almost every hole, was sufficient to challenge the pros who seemed to collectively struggle with confidence on the greens - sometimes seemed there were more twenty footers going in than five footers. (I was going to ask you to measure the diameter of the hole - the pros made it look the size of a thimble.)

Edit: pgatour.com shows that Merion's 18th, 5th, 14th, 6th and 15th holes played as the FIVE HARDEST HOLES on Tour so far this year.

Yup, Going to Hartford on Friday, but still awaiting publication of the tee-times which seem a bit delayed! Fantastically well organized event, Travelers must be a dream come true as lead sponsor for the PGA Tour - a stark contrast to some tournaments I've been to over the years and long may they continue.

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Post by ScottieD18 Wed 19 Jun 2013, 12:19 pm

I also noticed a lot of short puts were missed, but perhaps more importantly a lot of puts form all ranges were going sideways at the hole.  More than a few times it looked like crazy golf near the hole.

Perhaps a lot of the holes were cut on less flat ground than normal?  Certianly one way to push up the scopes.

The USPGA got the winning score they wanted, but for me they spoiled the veiwing experience a little.  Phil not carrying a driver the whole week says a lot.  The US Open is meant to be a total test, but not really a test of driving for many.

I felt the natural winning course for the the course was nearer 10 under and the USPGA had to trick it up a little bit too much to get the winning score back to level par.

Open at Muirfield next.  I suspect the cream will come to the top again.  Maybe Lee, Luke and the other top British players will be enspired by Justin's win?  Will Muirfield suit Tiger?

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Post by Shotrock Wed 19 Jun 2013, 12:45 pm

The greens at Merion are lethal and have been that way for as long as I can remember. Remember, in the past 12 months both the 15th and 12th greens were flattened somewhat at USGA direction to make them (1) more playable with (2) adequate pin positions. Holes 5, 6, 14, and 18 played so hard due, in large part, to brutal length and, in the case of 5, a very hard green. Surprised that 15 played so hard. Aronimink and Merion are about 7 miles apart. I'm guessing Justin is looking for property somewhere in the middle!


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Post by robopz Wed 19 Jun 2013, 6:51 pm

Bit of a surprising comment by Billy Harmon (Butch's brother and top-50 teacher in his own right) on Morning Drive today (Wed. June 19). In talking about Justin Rose's swing, especially that great drive on #18 he offered the following:

"Sean really, to me right now is probably the best teacher of the professional player. He had Hunter Mahan in the hunt. You know you're pretty good when your worst player is Tiger Woods in your stable at the U.S. Open."

Then he went on to demonstrate why he thought the fundamentals Foley is teaching are so strong.... spine angle... rotation... body movement... etc...

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Post by robopz Wed 19 Jun 2013, 7:39 pm

Two of my first images of Justin Rose....

Got to thinking about some of the first photos I ever took of Justin Rose and remembered these from the Memorial in 2004, his first full season on the PGA Tour.   I believe these were 3rd round that year as he had worked himself into contention.

I particularly liked these because they showed both his intensity while striking a drive (the first one) and his engaging smile and personality came through as he watched the results (the 2nd one).  I also liked the 2nd one because it indicated the popularity this young man had in the states even though his rather large gallery is implied and not shown directly.

I thought I understood one of these (probably the 1st) got picked up in some publications in the UK... but I never saw any tear-sheets or anything.   If they did appear over there, it probably would have been sometime in early to late June 2004.  If any of you happen to have any magazine collections or anything that might have either of these... I'd be most appreciative if you could let me know so maybe I can obtain copies.  

(I've searched these images TinEye and no results... so I doubt these ever appeared online... so if the were used... it would have been in print I'm guessing)

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B28-0Wqx5A38aVBLQkhBRERDMEk/edit?usp=sharing
https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B28-0Wqx5A38SDZydEt4ZjdudEU/edit?usp=sharing

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 19 Jun 2013, 7:48 pm

Tiger Woods out of AT&T due to elbow injury.
Who'd've thunk it??!!

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Post by robopz Wed 19 Jun 2013, 7:56 pm

OUCH... literally and figuratively...

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 19 Jun 2013, 8:22 pm

Nice pic's robo . . . .

Tiger's pain is a big loss to a tournament that seems on life support without him.
You say 3 and 4 will be there but I wonder who else? Watney presumably, probably Mahan and Van Pelt ad maybe Dustin.
But there'll likely be a big drop off after the top half dozen, and I can't imagine Greenbrier will fare much better - some Carolina Boys presumably but the rest will just be golfers scrambling for the Play-Offs and, by definition, their 2013/2014 cards.

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Post by robopz Wed 19 Jun 2013, 9:57 pm

AT&T has Watney... but not DJ.  For some reason they're always kept most their commitments pretty close to the vest.   They will answer if asked specifically on a player... but they don't release a full list in advance.   What they did say back in May was 10 of the OWGR top-30 were committed... plus 6 other PGAT winners.  With TW out, and based on past fields... to me the AT&T National is sounding like maybe low to mid 40's at most.

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Post by sirbenson Wed 19 Jun 2013, 10:23 pm

Great field for the week after a major.

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Post by GPB Wed 19 Jun 2013, 11:02 pm

Tiger can attract top 50 players when there is a guaranteed 6 figure paycheck and guaranteed OWGR ranking points.

But his PGATournament does not attract a good field.  It is an invitational which means that pace of play should be better than most summer events.  There are lot of US players outside the top 10 of the Prez Cup standings.

And it is not like it is "on deck" like Memphis and John Deere.


Nor is it a "hangover" tournament like Travelors or Wyndham.


It should be in the perfect position for an American player to fill in the gap between the two Opens.

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Post by robopz Wed 19 Jun 2013, 11:45 pm

GPB...  Back in the days before the FedEx Cup decimated the mid summer schedule, and before so many of the top ranked players started coming from the "dual tour" ranks... you might have been right.  But not any more. 

All 3 or 4 of the tournaments between the U.S. Open and Open Championship are in a bit of  dead zone now.  Usually the AT&T performs either at or tied for the best of those 4 or 5, but this year it'll probably be behind the Travelers having lost Woods. (might have been anyway).  But either way... for any of these "tweener" events to even get to a 50 these days would be something special... special enough it ain't gonna happen very often.

       TRAV  B/GB  AT&T  DEER 
2007    46    38    62    24
2008    36    34    48    32
2009    48    --    50    34
2010    38    --    48    34
2011    44    --    44    30
2012    46    48    48    36
2013    48

And my guess is... the PGAT players may care about pace of play... but 1 minute difference in tee time increments is just not something that's high on their list of considerations when choosing events.

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Post by McLaren Thu 20 Jun 2013, 1:37 am

Kwini wrote:Tiger Woods out of AT&T due to elbow injury.
Who'd've thunk it??!!

Lets hope he didn't get a touch of tennis elbow going deep into the 5th with Wozza.  Actually I hope he did.
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Post by GPB Thu 20 Jun 2013, 2:24 am

Robo, I am not buying your FedEx argument, at least not completely.

There are plenty of highly ranked players, every year whose season is poor that are having a poor year, to get FE points and play in those lucrative tournaments.  This year the players are players like Zach and Dufner, who are underperforming compared to prior years.

Even Rory and Luke haven't clinched a BMW spot, let alone a TC spot.

You have to admit that ATT is in a better calendar position than Hartford and it gets a comparable field.

Its not only the time increments, but it is a difference in the cut.
There is little chance Rory and the other 5 players at 147 would  would have made the cut at Memorial had it been a full field of 156 players.  I am pretty sure that at least 3 of the 24 players that did not play the Memorial would have shot better than 147 in the first two rounds.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 20 Jun 2013, 12:04 pm

Surely the actual tournament has something to do with the quality of field, GPB?
You'd be hard-pressed to find an event where the sponsor and community does more to make everyone, players and fans alike, feel more at home than does The Travelers and Greater Hartford.
There's a little bit of a dip usually when the US Open is on the West Coast but even then there's a chartered flight to ease the aggravation of getting to CT.

And DC in summer heat is not everyone's cup of tea.

I'd think Greenbrier will really be struggling this year - remember the 2012 field was boosted by Tiger and Phil. And we know at least one of those won't be there in a fortnight, most likely both.

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Post by princedracula Thu 20 Jun 2013, 1:13 pm

Huh?! Is that really the way he started his day...?
 
Great write up, kwini clap
 
Merion may not be 100% perfect, but that was probably part of the reason why I loved that course. Really enjoyed watching those top players facing challenges that you rarely get to see them having to deal with otherwise... I'm also not buying the argument I've heard from many about the rough and the lack of an intermediate cut (or 'first' cut)... Always viewed the 'first cut' idea more as a way to protect the pros rather than a transitional challenge level.  Lots of slightly wayward tee shots are stoped by that first cut from entering the real stuff, and hitting a ball from a first cut represents virtually no extra challenge for the pros these days... 
 
Go Paddddddy!!!Leprechaun

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Post by robopz Thu 20 Jun 2013, 1:17 pm

GPB... I'm totally missing your point on Zach Johnson and Dufner and what they have to do with the topic of strength of events between the Opens. Zach played The Travelers/John Deere combo in 2011-12 and seems he's doing the same this year. And Dufner had played some combo of 2 events between the Opens for a few years until last year when he took his delayed honeymoon in that period and played none, but this year seems back on track.

I'm also confused as to what point you are trying to make with Luke and Rory. There only relevance is that Luke hasn't played a PGAT event between the Opens since the FedEx Cup came online in 2007, but Luke does pick up a Euro event in between. And Rory has never played a PGAT event between the Opens in his entire career.  IMO those guys are just two examples that buttresses my point about dual tour players not participating much on the PGAT between the Opens.

I'm sure your data on cuts and what Rory might or might not have done is probably accurate, but I would offer that TOP players are likely not near as concerned with looking for events in which they can make the cut as you seem to be  (No-cut WGC's excepted). IMO they enter events that 1) they think gives them a good chance of doing VERY well (not just making the cut) and 2) events that fit their schedule.

In the 6 years prior to the FedEx Cup (2001-2006), 11 of the 22 events played between the Opens got a 50 or better OWGR.  In the 6 years since (which includes this week) only 2 of 22 have recieved 50 or more (AT&T in '07 & '09).

Bottom line: Regardless of what you "think" it should be, the FACT is this portion between the Opens has become somewhat of a dead zone. and IMO the absence of many of the Tour's dual tour players (of which there are more than there used to be), along with FedEx induced scheduling issues that has the top American based players choosing to play a bit less during this period are the reasons.

EDIT: And by the way... I don't necessarily support a notion that the 2nd week after the U.S. Open necessarily "should" be the best week.  If you go back to the 6 years prior to the FedEx... the best weeks seemed to be determined by the EVENT and or if there were 3 or 4 events between the Opens.  Same thing after...

Here is the list of "best fields" between the Opens.

2001 - Western Open - 3rd week (out of 4 events)
2002 - Hartford - 1st week (out of 4)
2003 - Western/Hartford tied - 1st and 3rd week (out of 4)
2004 - Western - 2nd week (out of 3)
2005 - Western - 2nd week (out of 3)
2006 - Western - 3rd week (out of 4)

2007 - ATT - 3rd week (out of 4)
2008 - ATT - 3rd week (out of 4)
2009 - ATT - 2nd week (out of 3)
2010 - ATT - 2nd week (out of 3)
2011 - ATT/Travelers tie - 1st and 2nd week (out of 3)
2012 - ATT/Greenbriar tie - 2nd and 3rd week (out of 4)


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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 20 Jun 2013, 1:41 pm

There are going to be some pretty good golfers who will only retain their cards via the four-tournament series "opposite" the Play-Offs.
It will be interesting to see who participates, especially the dual-Tour guys, and who folds their Tour tent.
As expected months ago, it seems likely that we'll see a whittling down of borderline (not a flattering description of Hanson, Colsaerts, Fisher, Karlsson, even Immelman who will have full ET privileges)during this process.

Meanwhile, I see TPC River Highlands has stiffened up the 7th hole, which has hitherto been a featureless, boring, flat par 4, with the expectation it will play half a shot more difficult. Course not playing that easy so far this morning.

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Post by robopz Thu 20 Jun 2013, 1:48 pm

Kwini... I think you have it right on the Travelers.   In a way, I think that event is somewhat to the U.S. Open as the Heritage is to the Masters.  The organizers have put it together as much more "relaxed" cool down from the stress of a major.  And this event has it's history too.  Back in the early 2000's it used to play right after the U.S. Open and field strength wise it would compete very favorably with the Western Open (both averaged about a 58 for 2001-2003).  But when Hartford got jobbed out of it's post U.S. Open spot in 2004... it suffered a bit and even when it returned to it's post U.S. Open spot in 2007 it wasn't going to draw quite the field strength it did before (IMO for the reasons I've outlined to GPB above). 

And I agree with you about Greenbriar likely not being up to last year's "snuff"... although Phil is committed.  But that said... Justice is doing a pretty amazing job with that event all things considered, selling the family aspect to the players.... and many are responding.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 20 Jun 2013, 2:00 pm

Been reading a few news items about Mr.Justice and his non-Greenbrier interests. About as flattering as you'd expect from someone who apparently added a half-billion dollars to his wealth last year!


Not to reopen an old wound but I'd say some ET events could learn a thing or two about the way The Travelers run their event. Not just for the players but for the fans - last ET tournament I was at, it seemed as if no-one gave a toss about the fans, almost as if they thought it (Celtic Manor in this case) was their Field Of Dreams.
Complete contrast to Hartford where the fan experience is spectacularly good, everyone warmly welcomed, likely to pick up a useful trinket during the event, and equally warmly thanked for their attendance. Parking on site and every whim catered for.
Some great vantage points to watch tee shots from behind the golfers and the players' vibe is just as good - even Sabbatini in the gallery chatting last year.
The non-hardcore golf fan loves that sort of thing.

72 golfers on course right now bracketed by six shots!

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Post by robopz Thu 20 Jun 2013, 2:51 pm

Kwini... shocker of all shockers to most people... but I've found Sabbo to be a VERY nice and engaging guy over the years.  But he's a hot head... just don't catch him after a particularly bad round (which could translate as a high score or playing with Ben Crane... :-)

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 20 Jun 2013, 3:02 pm

robo,
Don't doubt it. Bit of a personal schism also these days apparently.
Possibly accounting for some of his recent poor form; she certainly doesn't have much good to say about Roary at the moment.

Hunner and Lee going nicely.

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Post by robopz Thu 20 Jun 2013, 3:06 pm

GPB: RE: "When he does play the Tour again, he should be automatic for Comeback Player of the Year, and maybe even rename it the Jarrod Lyle Comeback Player of the Year."
++++++

Yep... I've opined similar in other places. IMO the moment Lyle sticks that peg back in the ground on Tour... the CBPOY should be his... regardless of the outcome.  Not sure I agree about renaming it... but still... he should get it.

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Post by Shotrock Thu 20 Jun 2013, 7:10 pm

Wow. Get the feeling Hunter's a little upset about the way he finished Merion last Sunday ... and is taking it out in New England today? Hope he can keep it up.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 20 Jun 2013, 7:30 pm

Shotrock,
See my note 5). above and add the fact that Hunner is the leading career money winner at TPC River Highlands and it all makes perfect sense, so long as there was no Merion hangover.
As John Wood said when asked how easy his man's 62 was:
"Everything is easier here."

Except putting on the benign third green for four-putts Westwood.

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 20 Jun 2013, 8:33 pm

Three balls in the water on one hole for Poults - not a good start on a course he should thrive on. Similat to Memphis where he went four or five over on his front nine, only to haul himself back into contention. And then, having done all the hard work, slip back down the field.
What will this week have in store?

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Post by robopz Thu 20 Jun 2013, 10:17 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:robo,
Don't doubt it. Bit of a personal schism also these days apparently.
Possibly accounting for some of his recent poor form; she certainly doesn't have much good to say about Roary at the moment.

No doubt.  I think it goes to show us all... you can't judge these guys from what you see on television... or even what you see up close and personal some times.  I saw Sabbo with Amy quite a bit and didn't have a clue.  And while there are whispers and more around some guys... he wasn't on anybody's list as far as I ever knew.

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Post by McLaren Fri 21 Jun 2013, 12:40 pm

Rose has signed with Tiger's management agency.  Anyone know why he changed?

I assume this was planned even before he won the US open.
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Post by SmithersJones Fri 21 Jun 2013, 2:50 pm

McLaren wrote:Rose has signed with Tiger's management agency.  Anyone know why he changed?

I assume this was planned even before he won the US open.
Putting 2 and 2 together, with the news that Steinberg has signed the former no.1 amateur Chris Williams and got him a Nike deal, I guess JR will be leaving TM for Nike asap. Be interesting to see if he likes them as much as Rory does. Whistle
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Post by twoeightnine Fri 21 Jun 2013, 2:58 pm

Mac, I read that it was well in hand before the US Open.  Must be a right pain to lose a client who you took from ranking in the 100s to a major.  Just the point where his earnings will go sky rocketing.  Although I would guess that sponsors that they signed for him (like BA a few months ago) will have clauses in the contract that increase the payments for major wins and they will still get paid on them.

Strangely it was the old agent that put out the press release.  Maybe they feel that it looks like they are in some control that way.


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Post by robopz Fri 21 Jun 2013, 6:30 pm

So Nedbank is an official Euro Tour event now (30 players)...  guess the World Challenge is next...
http://www.nedbankgolfchallenge.com/article.aspx?id=1982024

PS... and does this signal they've lost hope for the Tournament of Hope?


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Post by robopz Fri 21 Jun 2013, 6:52 pm

SmithersJones wrote:Putting 2 and 2 together, with the news that Steinberg has signed the former no.1 amateur Chris Williams and got him a Nike deal, I guess JR will be leaving TM for Nike asap. Be interesting to see if he likes them as much as Rory does. Whistle

I kinda doubt the Nike angle... I suspect TM would pony up the necessary to keep Rose... whereas a Titleist (with Rory) is less apt to do so.

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Post by sirbenson Fri 21 Jun 2013, 7:30 pm

Go on Padraig!!!

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Post by GPB Fri 21 Jun 2013, 9:45 pm

I think Live Scoring at PGATour just threw a gasket!

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Post by pedro Fri 21 Jun 2013, 9:53 pm

GPB wrote:I think Live Scoring at PGATour just threw a gasket!
John Daly T1 at -6...... Shocked

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Post by GPB Fri 21 Jun 2013, 10:56 pm

pedro wrote:
GPB wrote:I think Live Scoring at PGATour just threw a gasket!
John Daly T1 at -6...... Shocked

So was Poultergeist!

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Post by pedro Fri 21 Jun 2013, 11:11 pm

Somebody is pranking us..

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Post by GPB Sat 22 Jun 2013, 12:01 am

T71 makes the Cut this week. Loophole in the PGAT bylaws says that 70 PROS have to make the cut. So since Justin Thomas (-2) is an amateur, players that are T71 make the cut.

Helping Westy and Fowler among others.

Little known fact about Tiger Woods consecutive streak. He was T71 at the 2004 Bay Hill tournament, and made the cut because of this loophole.

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Post by super_realist Sat 22 Jun 2013, 10:23 am

Outstanding fightback from Poulter. Since his horrendous 9 on his 8th hole of R, I dont think he's dropped a shot.

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Post by GPB Sat 22 Jun 2013, 2:48 pm

Looks like Westy has checked out of this tournament.

+3 for the day and DFL of players who made the cut. Unless he has a big turnaround, he will be a victim of the MDF cut today.

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Post by kwinigolfer Sat 22 Jun 2013, 3:29 pm

A fun day at The Travelers in great weather.
Followed Bubba for his morning round in perfect scoring conditions; that boy hits some extraordinary shots.
And dropped back at strategic moments to watch Colsaerts hit some drives. Different game, though the rest of his game was way off/he didn't seem to give a monkey's.
More difficult, swirling winds especially, conditions in the p.m.; followed Russell Knox and Gonzo for nine holes, Freddie Jac for the other nine.
Gonzo out of sorts, but Russell Knox was most impressive, fairways and greens and, the only time I saw him in trouble, he redeemed himself with a long par putt. Smaller and slighter than I expected, but certainly hits the ball far enough.
Love watching Freddie, not to mention his (well, someone's) lady. A 150 yd carry, never more than 3 ft off the deck, to extricate himself from trees a thing of beauty.

Watched Westwood tee off #1, but avoided the mob following him.
Only saw Harrington play one hole, which he bogeyed, so left him alone after that. Great round tho', perhaps the best of the afternoon - several groups of Ireland shirts out there, though most seemed to wilt as the day grew hotter and longer . . . . . ! As said before, Padraig is very popular at Hartford, and is great at acknowledging his support.

Dufner was playing with Bubba and clearly not at his sharpest - never seen him before, same on the course as he appears on TV though seemed intent on keeping Bubba and his caddie in stitches. Left one green and a young boy was watching Dufner walk by and the lad found that Dufner had dropped a ball in his hand so furtively he almost didn't realise where it came from. Fun to see from someone who really doesn't much respond to the gallery.

Great day out, wonderfully well-run tournament. Long may it continue.

PS: GPB, Re pgatour.com going on the fritz: The whole on-course scoring system pegged out for about forty minutes in the afternoon. Not sure which is the chicken and which is the egg there.

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Post by princedracula Sat 22 Jun 2013, 3:59 pm

Cheers kwini, great to hear you had a nice day. Can't wait for next week...

Paddy in a good position and starting to feel more comfortable, it would appear, with the silly stick. Slightly disappointed with Gonzo's decision to play this week over there, a bit of a waste of time by the looks of it... and all that at the expense of playing the Irish Open next week... Booooooooo...

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Post by GPB Sat 22 Jun 2013, 4:03 pm

Good Report Kwini:

Westwood and Dufner are let me down this week (take a look at the PGATour Fantasy Game and who is leading the OVERALL game Shocked, projected) I need Bubba to do well and casting a voodoo spell over Justin Rose because I thought he would be spent this week. Hopefully he is running on fumes and will be gassed this weekend.

http://fantasy.pgatour.com/Report/OverallStandings

Yes, when I checked live scoring yesterday and the leaderboard look like it was on a bad heroin trip.

Glad you had a good time, and as I check the leaderboard, Westy is making a comeback, 4 birdies on the back nine. he will be around for tomorrow barring disaster on the 18th hole.


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Post by kwinigolfer Sat 22 Jun 2013, 4:16 pm

Glad to see you're doing better on your pgatour fantasy trip than I am on yahoo GPB. A catastrophic US Open partly caused by their customary failure to properly register substitutions during the course of a tournament with interruptions of play!
Better this week (at least until this morning) though after a very good week at Memphis.

Looks like Westwood woke up just in time - but he needs some high finishes to better justify his full-time effort here.

Better field than I expected for Congressional . . . . .

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Post by GPB Sat 22 Jun 2013, 4:17 pm

Notables at the ATT Congressional.

Scott, Rose, Mahan, Fowler, Watney, Van Pelt, Day, Horschel, Furyk.

Ryo Ishikawa is also in the field, flying back from Japan (discussed in the OWGR thread)

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