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PGA Tour: Rising from the Ashes in Phoenix?: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 28 Jan 2015, 4:41 am

First topic message reminder :

1).Sound familiar? Turns up at his press conference in Phoenix just a week or so from appearing in mug shots looking, shall we say, not his normal self, back after his face has undergone, as Shawn Colvin might sing, "A few small repairs", out of contention for more than a year and no Majors since 2008, and moaning at the press for making too much of a slight rearrangement:
Press: "So many people are not believing your story."
Golfer: "Dude, you guys, it's just the way the media is. It is what it is."
Press: "It's not just the media."
Golfer: "It is just what it is."

2).But enough about Tiger Woods, I'm more interested in Robert Allenby. And the script is pretty much the same. Who knows what to believe, but Aussie Allenby has been a pretty good player, a sometimes entertaining pro to follow, friend, mentor and benefactor to Jarrod Lyle, and author of one of the finest shots ever to win a PGA Tour Play Off, this time in pouring rain at Riviera. Six golfers set out from the 18th tee, a motley crew including Tway, Sluman, Chamblee, Izawa and Paulson. (No coincidence that two of them are broadcasters now.) And Allenby, in a downpour, laced a 2-iron to within tap-in distance to win the tournament.

Four shots off the winning score was the son of a professional footballer who is in the Stockport County Hall Of Fame! (And it's a curiosity that four of the Football League teams that Dad played for are now in the Conference, or worse!!)

3).But one shouldn't digress. Very happy to see Bill Haas win the final "Humana"-sponsored tournament in the California desert, and won't be surprised if he goes on to have a terrific year, which he'll probably wrap up as a member of his Dad's winning Presidents Cup Team.

4).Also at "Humana", Phil Mickelson tied for the tournament lead in birdies, perhaps a sign that the nearly-45-year-old might be fit and ready to go for 2015? Phil will be playing Phoenix and the "Farmers" at Torrey Pines, skip Pebble Beach and Riviera, and be back in the saddle by the WGC:Cadillac.

5).He also announced his intention to play the WGC:MatchPlay at Harding Park, in May. So far then, Mickelson will be competing in the MatchPlay but Donald will be taking the week off, so we're talking the Top 65 in the owgr rankings, at least, to tee it up in San Francisco.

6).Also notable from "Humana" is the performance of three "anchorers": Brendan Steele finished T2, Webb Simpson was T7 (leading the field in putting), and Carl Pettersson was cruising well inside the cut-line until closing with a 3-hole, four-over par flourish to miss the cut by one. All with short putters.
Keegan Bradley is flip-flopping between a regular stroke and anchoring, while Tim Clark and Kevin Stadler are among the few anchoring hold-outs. When they're healthy.

7).They all want to play in Phoenix, probably the most over-subscribed tournament of this year's Tour. Wheatcroft tied for 2nd last week and is an alternate as his Top Ten exemption is gazumped, as is Colt Knost's.
Mansfield's Greg Owen is 34th alternate, Richard Sterne about 40th. No-one said it was going to be easy Richard.

8).The second biggest cheque won by a European golfer last week was the $300+K banked by Miguel-Angel Jimenez as he won the season-opening Champions Tour event in Hawaii. Bernhard Langer, anchoring as usual, finished five shots back despite taking a TEN on a Par-5, duffing one shot after another in the lava, getting himself into a lather. One-time "Humana" and Phoenix winner, Jesper Parnevik, turns 50 in a few weeks and it'll be interesting to see how he does. (Talking about golfers remodelling their bodies; not you Greg Norman.)

9).The LPGA Tour kicks off its season this week in Florida, with lots of eyes focussing on Lydia Ko who is still just 17. Amazing talent, 5 career wins already, and physically transformed from the 14-y-o who burst onto the scene three years ago. Jodi Ewart Shadoff is the leading GB golfer competing.

10).And so to Phoenix. It's fashionable to say that the season proper doesn't get underway until the boys reach Florida. Don't you believe it. The 2014/15 season will be more than 25% complete by the time the circus returns to California next week. Those who've played poorly (Casey, Donald, Gonzo, Harrington, etc) or not at all, will find they have a lot of catching up to do.    
The TPC Scottsdale has undergone some restoration/redesign work since we last saw it, Tom Weiskopf happily vacating the TV booth to enhance his design. So, it will be familiar to the pros, but slightly different.
The European contingent on hand is small but hopefully Molinari can continue last week's good work. Davis, Knox and Laird lead the GB&I competition and can build on recent good results, whilst Harrington makes another cameo.
But all eyes will be on the guy with the recently disfigured appearance, almost like watching a NASCAR race these days, the audience compelled to watch in case of a "wreck". Not you Allenby, the self-described "brown dude".


Last edited by kwinigolfer on Fri 30 Jan 2015, 1:08 am; edited 2 times in total

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Post by pedro Fri 06 Feb 2015, 8:42 am

hend085 wrote:at what point does woods start getting penalised for his WD's? would be interested to see where he ranks in terms of all time WDs if anyone has that stat.
I guess his handicap goes up .1. laughing

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Post by Bob_the_Job Fri 06 Feb 2015, 9:15 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Some clarification on the Tour's agreements with the caddies, from Finchem:

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/finchem-mum-lawsuit-talks-player-caddie-relationship/

A friend who used to caddie on the E.T. lives a couple of doors down the street and knows several of the PGA Tour caddies, including Jimmy Johnson who's named in the suit as a plaintiff. I'll be interested to see what his perspective is.

Interesting. Given the approach Finchem is taking in the article, I guess the tour are saying that the revenue from the advertising on the bibs feeds into the prize fund etc. so the place the caddies should go to look to recover some of it is from their employers - the players. But the big flaw in that logic is that the players don't have the right to tell the caddy not to wear the bib. For me it comes down to this - if the tour mandates that the caddies wear the bib, natural justice suggests they should get some of the benefit, and it should be the tour that pays that. If the tour then choose to reduce prize funds for the players as a result, that is their business decision.
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Post by lorus59 Fri 06 Feb 2015, 10:13 am

I think it's time to stick a fork into Woods, he's done.

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Post by Davie Fri 06 Feb 2015, 1:56 pm

Davie wrote:The retirement of Woods from the professional game can surely not be far away

Bad form I know to quote one's own posts .. but this from 1 week ago earlier on this thread is looking more and more likely

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Post by SmithersJones Fri 06 Feb 2015, 2:09 pm

I've been thinking that for quite some time now. After the year he had in 2013 but still didn't get another major, I don't think he believes any more.
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Post by McLaren Fri 06 Feb 2015, 2:10 pm

Davie

If he is actually injured then you are correct. But do we have any reason to believe he is injured and not just in a terrible run of form? If it is just a form issue then I would predict that we will see tiger trying to play until all his exemption have run out. Which I assume is pretty much never.


If injured to the extend he seems to be then I can see him calling it a day. His Navy seal mentality will count retiring injured as an honorable end to his call of duty. A wounded hero figure if you like.
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Post by McLaren Fri 06 Feb 2015, 2:21 pm

In addition to the wounded hero tag, if he retires injured then he can try and spin history to have the "if tiger wasn't injured would he have matched jack" question mark added. If he continues then it is pretty obvious he won't match jack and no one ask "if" because there wouldn't be an "if".
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Post by kwinigolfer Fri 06 Feb 2015, 2:22 pm

He'll doubtless demand a Purple Heart to persuade him to step aside.

Much as I detested the persona that he adopted and all the sycophantic sucking up that went with it, it'll be a sad end to a great career.
And I doubt he'll go so meekly, he'll surely be competitive enough to reinvent himself with a swing befitting his age and physical condition?

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Post by navyblueshorts Fri 06 Feb 2015, 2:24 pm

That may be true Mac, but retiring because he can't engage his glutes doesn't sound great to me! That's not very heroic. Amusing maybe, but not heroic. I'm sure Audie Murphy wouldn't have let a lack of glute-engagement keep him out of the action...
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