Sunday, January 10, 2010

TALKING GOLF WITH GARY #62

OGILVY DOUBLES UP
Geoff Ogilvy rallied from a two-shot deficit with 10 holes to play to gain a one-shot victory over Rory Sabbatini at the U.S. PGA 2010 season-opening SBS Championship.

Ogilvy played short of the par-4 14th, where most players were hitting driver, and pitched to 4 feet for birdie. And he took the outright lead with a 5-wood into 25 feet for a two-putt birdie on the 15th.


Sabbatini, who started the final round six shots behind, ran off five straight birdies on the back nine to seize the lead and closed with a 63. He couldn’t reach the green on the 663-yard 18th in two, however, and missed a 10-foot birdie putt that ultimately cost him
.
Ogilvy parred the17th , then laid up on the 18th to take trouble out of play on the left and closed with a par. He finished at 22-under 270 and moved back into the top 10 in the world with his seventh career PGA Tour victory.

Lucas Glover, who had a share of the lead the first three rounds,shot a 76 and fell  back to finish in 14th place. Matt Kuchar continued his strong play and finished in third place.

Next week is the Sony Open in Honolulu.



SCHWARTZEL WINS AFRICA OPEN
Charl Schwartzel won the Africa Open by defeating countryman Thomas Aiken by one stroke, despite bogeying the final hole.

Schwartzel had a 6-under 67  at the East London Golf Club in the tournament co-sanctioned by the Sunshine Tour and the European Tour.

Aiken led going into the final round with Trevor Fisher Jr., and  double-bogeyed the fifth hole. That let Schwartzel open up a lead he never relinquished. He had a three-stroke advantage on the 16th and then had to wait things out as Aiken made a birdie on 15 to get within two shots. Schwartzel thought Aiken had birdied 17 to draw even, but the leaderboard was wrong .

In the end, Aiken just missed a 15-foot birdie attempt that would have forced a playoff.

Jbe’ Kruger of South Africa shot a 70 to finish third and Fisher had a 72 to fall into a tie for fourth another shot back with Rick Kulacz of Australia, James Morrison of England and Chris Swanepoel of South Africa.

It was Schwartzel’s fourth European Tour win .

Next on tap is the Joburg Open in Johannesburg, South Africa.


EUROPE BEATS ASIA IN ROYAL TROPHY

Europe was victorious against Asia in a tightly fought Royal Trophy match play event, with Henrik Stenson picking up a shot on the final hole for an 8 1/2 to 7 1/2 victory.

Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand came up just short on a 15-foot putt at No. 18 that would have given him a win over Stenson, squared the three-day event at 8-8 and forced a playoff. The Swede then sank a 7-footer to square the match and give Europe a victory in the three-day event.

The roller-coaster competition saw Asia take the early lead Friday, but fall behind after Saturday’s four-ball competition.

Asia entered the final day a point down, but appeared poised for a victory after claiming 3 1/2 points to 1 1/2 for Europe over the first five singles matches.

Billed as "The Battle of the Continents" the Royal Trophy is a relatively new event, using the Ryder Cup as it's model.




 IN OTHER NEWS
Rory McIlroy has been voted the Professional of the Year at the 2009 Irish Golf Writers’ Association Awards evening, sponsored by AIB Bank, which took place in the AIB Bankcentre in Dublin.
  The 20 year old ,not only broke into the world’s top ten last year, but claimed his  first European Tour title– at the Dubai Desert Classic in February – and notched 14 top ten finishes, including third place at the US PGA Championship.



John Daly will be playing in at least three PGA Tour events during the first two months of the season. He will start at the Sony Open next week in Honolulu. He said he also received an exemption to the San Diego Open, and that he was in the 156-man field at Pebble Beach.
  Daly was serving a 6 month suspension in 2009 and his play was limited to tournaments in Australia and on the European Tour. But, this year he is back reportedly 115 lbs. lighter and with some new equioment. We will get to see next week.



Electronic Arts Inc. said Monday it will stand behind Tiger Woods -- at least for the release of a new online golf game featuring the embattled athlete.
  The relationship between EA and Woods stretches back more than a decade, and Tiger Woods-branded games have pulled in hundreds of millions of dollars for the company over the years.



Jack Nicklaus says 2010 big year in majors for Tiger. Nicklaus said "If Tiger is going to pass my record, this is a big year for him in that regard,” Nicklaus said on Friday. To read the entire statement see link below.
http://tiny.cc/bxY8Q


That's it for this week'

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