Posted on: July 29, 2011 3:32 pm

Woods off sidelines, signs up for double duty

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Looks like Tiger Woods, after sitting on the bench for most of the summer with injuries, plans to play in a golfing double-header right out of the chute.

Not only has Woods committed to play in next week's Bridgestone Invitational, he already has booked a spot the following week in the final major of the season, too.

A PGA of America official on Friday said that Woods has also committed to play at the PGA Championship, to be held Aug. 11-14 at Atlanta Athletic Club.

Woods finished T29 the last time the PGA was staged at AAC, when David Toms won by a shot over Phil Mickelson.

Woods, who has played only nine competive holes since finishing T4 at the Masters in April, has won the PGA title four times.

Woods announced on his website Thursday that he was returning to the game after a more than two-month layoff dating to his withdrawal after nine sloppy holes at the Players Championship in mid-May.

Category: Golf
Tags: pga, tiger woods
Posted on: August 15, 2010 5:32 pm

Woods completes Slam season, looks ahead

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. – Maybe it’s the power of positive thinking, or perhaps it was just delusions of grandeur.

Despite the incredible tumult in his life since last November, Tiger Woods thought he had a chance at winning one of the major championships in 2010.

“I thought I could,” Woods said Sunday. “I thought I could, certainly -- just got to play well at the right time. Just four days. I just got to put it together for four days and I never did that.”

He never came close, really.

Finishing off his second consecutive season without a Grand Slam title, Woods finished with a 1-over 73 and was T27 as the leaders finished the final round the 92nd PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.

After finishing fourth and having an outside chance at the first two majors of the year, Woods was a non-factor at the last two, adding to his season of angst.
“Disappointed, certainly,” he said. “In order for it to be a great year you have to win a major championship. I won six times last year and it was a good year, yeah, but it wasn't a great year.”

Barring a massive rally in his few remaining starts, this represents his worst season, by any personal or professional yardstick.

Sunday’s effort marked his 11th consecutive round without breaking par as Woods limped into the so-called FedEx Cup playoff series in a projected 108th place in points. Unless that position improves, Woods will only be eligible for the first of four FedEx events, The Barclays, two weeks down the road in New Jersey.

Just as uncertain is his status for the Ryder Cup team, since he failed to clinch one of the eight automatic berths that were cemented Sunday night. Woods must now rely on one of four captain’s picks to be issued in three weeks by Corey Pavin.

At least after last week’s career-worst debacle at the Bridgestone Invitational, Woods felt like he might be able to contribute if picked.

“I think I got a chance of maybe helping out in singles,” cracked Woods, who is 3-1-1 in that portion of the competition in his five Ryder trips. “Save me to singles. I mean, no, I feel like my game is a lot better than it was obviously last week, and given a little bit more time it's starting to head in the right direction now, which is good. And I'm looking forward to it -- hopefully Corey will pick me on the team.”

Given his FedEx Cup status, he might have one chance to make an impression at The Barclays. Woods said he was heading home for a week of practice, which might include more  work with his newest ally, swing coach Sean Foley.

While the pair don’t have a formal client-pupil relationship yet, Woods said he was intrigued what he has seen from the Canadian, who also coached Sean O’Hair, Justin Rose, Hunter Mahan and a couple of other tour veterans.

There’s one huge benefit for Woods, whose personal life is in serious transition: Foley is based in Winter Garden, Fla., just a few minutes from the back gate at Woods’ home outside Orlando.

“I asked him to take a look at my swing this week and give me some ideas of what he sees,” Woods said. “I like some of his, some of the things he had to say about my golf swing and where I needed to go. I like the direction because I was able to hit the shots that I used to be able to hit feel-wise. 

“So when you get that kind of contact again it's good. As far as working down the road, I'm sure I'm going to see him a little bit more. 

“I still want to pick his brain a little bit more. I don't really have all of his whole concept yet.  But I would like to get to know him a little bit more before I fully get into it.”

Category: Golf
Posted on: August 13, 2010 9:09 pm

Phil lurks on PGA periphery, literally

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. – For 27 holes, Phil Mickelson took the route less traveled on a punitive golf course that isn’t fit for man or mountain goat.

He paid the price.

“This is a penalizing golf course to not play from the fairway,” Mickelson said. “And I certainly explored a lot of areas here.”

The globetrotter act aside, he finally found what he was looking for on his back nine on Friday, rallying to finish with a 3-under 69 that left him six strokes behind Matt Kuchar at the 92nd PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.

The low point for Mickelson, still trying to unseat Tiger Woods as No. 1, drove into a hazard on the 18th and made a double bogey. Looking like it might be another meaningless week, Mickelson finally put something together on the back nine with four birdies in a 3-under 33.

“First 27 holes, for me to keep it around par was a feat, and I drove it better the last nine holes,” he said. “Hit one bad drive and of course, I bogeyed that hole. But other than that, the holes that I drove it well on those last nine I was able to attack the pins. 

“The greens are receptive, if you can get the ball in the fairway, you can go after the pins and once you're on the green you can really make a lot of putts. There's not too much break.”

Mickelson cut down the length of his driver shaft by one inch last week and installed a heavier shaft in an attempt to rein in his wildness off the tee. So far, it hasn’t worked much -- he found 7 of 14 on Friday. He never contended on the weekend last week at the Bridgestone Invitational after heading into the third round in second place.

“A lot of that [reasoning behind the driver change] was for Whistling Straits because I didn't feel distance was critical off the tee,” he said. “I felt it was more important to keep the ball low and out of the wind.  And so this driver launches a lot lower and stays in play. Should stay in play a lot more -- but that wasn't obviously the case.”

Still, when he won the Masters in April to collect his fourth major title, he wasn’t exactly lighting up the world early, either.

“I grinded pretty hard just to get in and you just never know what can happen in a major and I shot 10under on the weekend at Augusta and was able to leapfrog everybody and was quite a ways back,” he said. “I just want to be in a position where if I play like I know I can, I can make up some ground.  And I feel like I'm within striking distance.”

Perhaps the best news is that while Matt Kuchar’s lead over Lefty is six, there are only 17 players ahead of Mickelson on the scoreboard.

“It required a lot of patience to not force the issue today,” Mickelson said. “I obviously didn't have it all today. I wasn't putting myself in great positions off the tee, to where I could attack. Because of that, I had to be patient and try to just keep myself in position to where I could maybe make up the ground over the next two rounds.”

Posted on: August 12, 2010 11:52 am

Smile and say cheese -- no, really

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. -- Fog delay at PGA Championship into third hour.


I am not the only one. Ryder Cupper Ian Poulter in the locker room:

<img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/twitpic/photos/full/144437169.jpg?AWSAccessKeyId=0ZRYP5X5F6FSMBCCSE82&Expires=1281628874&Signature=tJM91qiEq96G3dKu9ns%2BWsTbdN0%3D" alt="Me with a cheese head on take s look what a laugh. #TwitPict" id="photo-display" class="photo" />
Category: Golf
Tags: cheese, pga, poulter
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