Sunday, November 1, 2009

TALKING GOLF WITH GARY #049

VIKING CLASSIC CANCELLED
  PGA Tour officials canceled the weather-plaqued Viking Classic on Saturday because of unplayable course conditions.
  No makeup date has been scheduled and players will move on to the final event of the season, the Children’s Miracle Network Classic on Nov. 12-15 in Orlando, Fla.
  The course had received 1.75 inches of rain Friday and Saturday alone,this on top of about 20 inches 0f rain in the past six weeks.
  This is the first time a tournament has been cancelled because of weather since the 1996 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, which was canceled due to unplayable conditions. The last rainout came in Houston in 1991, though that tournament was rescheduled.
  The Viking Classic was important for a few dozen players who are chasing tour cards for the 2010 season. The top 125 on the money list pass through and most of the players hovering around that level were in attendance. They’ll have just one chance now to move up.


COOK WINS CLOSER- ROBERTS WINS CUP
John Cook won the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship by five strokes Sunday for his second Champions Tour title in three weeks, while Loren Roberts held on to win the season points title.
Cook, won the Administaff Small Business Classic winner two weeks ago in Texas. He finished today with a 3-under 69 to finish at 22-under at Sonoma Golf Club.
  Roberts had a 66 to tie for sixth at 13-under and win the points title and $1 million annuity for the second time in three years. He had to hold off a strong surge from Bernhard Langer), who also finished at 13 under.
Russ Cochran finished second in the tournament. Brad Bryant and Jeff Sluman were 15 under, and Phil Blackmar was 14 under.


CHOI WINS LPGA EVENT
Na Yeon Choi made birdie at the last hole for a 67 on Sunday, giving her a one-shot victory over Maria Hjorth and Yani Tseng at the Hana Bank KOLON Championships.
Choi and Hjorth played in the same group and were tied heading to 18, where they both hit nice tee shots. Hjorth hit a 4-iron into a water hazzard, while Choi laid up in front of the green. Hjorth managed to save par, while Choi chipped within inches for the tap-in birdie.
  She finished at 10-under 278 at Sky 72 Golf Club’s Ocean Course, where the LPGA was making its annual tour stop in South Korea. Choi won the Samsung World Championships in September in similar fashion, with an eagle at the par-5 last hole.


FISHER DEFEATS KIM IN MATCH PLAY CHAMPIONSHIP
Ross Fisher beat Anthony Kim 4 and 3 on Sunday to win the 36-hole World Match Play Championship final.
  Fisher eagled the 22nd hole and birdied the next to take a 3-up lead. Kim won the next hole before missing short putts at the next two, then squandering several chances to win holes down the stretch. Fisher never trailed his American opponent.
  Kim tried to rally on the second 18, putting his tee shot within 15 feet on the 24th hole and then making the birdie putt. But he couldn’t hold it together around the greens, lipping out from about a foot two holes later.

POULTER WINS SINGAPORE OPEN
Ian Poulter overcame a rough stretch in mid-round to fire a one-over 72 and win the Singapore Open by one shot on Sunday, finishing the $5 million event on 10-under 274 for a wire-to-wire victory.
China’s Liang Wenchong finished second on nine-under-par, with Australian pair Scott Hend and Adam Scott tied for third,a further shot adrift of Poulter, who won for the first time on the European Tour since the 2006 Madrid Open.
  The co-sanctioned event was troubled by weather delays on the three previous days but Poulter returned to the course under blue skies on Sunday and battled through 30 holes before limping over the finishing line having let slip a five-shot halfway lead.
  Australian players Scott Hend and Adam Scott finished two shots back in a tie for third. Phil Mickelson and Ernie Els finished six shots back at 4-under.



IN OTHER NEWS
Joey Sindelar remained hospitalized Sunday after having a pulmonary embolism during the third round of the Charles Schwab Cup Championships.
The Champions Tour said Sindelar’s condition had improved but doctors at Sonoma Valley Hospital wanted to keep the 51-year-old for further observation.
Sindelar withdrew Saturday and was taken to the hospital for dizziness and shortness of breath after playing the 204-yard, par-3 fourth hole. Sindelar rested in between holes and tried to play the fifth before withdrawing. Medical personnel attended to Sindelar at the course before he was taken to the hospital for additional tests.



The LPGA Tour picked Michael Whan as its new commissioner. Whan previously worked for TaylorMade Golf and Wilson Sporting Goods and most recently was president of Mission-Itech Hockey. He replaces Carolyn Bivens, who was forced out by players in July as the tour kept losing sponsors. Bivens had a strong business background but little experience in sports when she was hired in 2005.
  The number of official money events dropped from 34 in 2008 to 28 this year. The number of events for 2010 will be even less, but will be surprisingly strong. The complete schedule will be released in  mid November.
Whan will take over in January.


Have a great week and keep on swinging.

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