Sunday, February 21, 2010

TALKING GOLF WITH GARY #69

POULTER WINS MATCH PLAY EVENT
Ian Poulter won for the first time in the US with his victory over fellow countryman Paul Casey. Poulter put on a short-game clinic Sunday and led over the final 28 holes on his way to a 4-and-2 victory over Casey at the first World Golf Championship of the year.

Poulter seized control in the morning session with two solid chips for birdies, then effectively closed out Casey with a deft pitch up the slope—with mud on his ball, no less—that settled inches away for one last birdie.


Casey tried to make a charge, winning the ninth hole with a par and the 10th with a 15-foot birdie. Poulter had a 2-up lead with eight holes remaining, momentum on Casey’s side.


But Casey couldn’t make up any ground on the par 5s, and Poulter seized control for good on the 307-yard 15th, where both players drove to the right of the green. Poulter nearly holed his chip for eagle, while Casey pitched just onto the green, and his birdie putt to halve the hole caught the lip.

It was a long day for Casey who had to go out in the morning to finish his marathon match with Camillio Villegas to see who would face Poulter in the finals. Casey won with a par after Camilo Villegas hooked his tee shot into the desert. Casey won in 24 holes, the longest match of the week.


But the finals was all Poulter's. All in all it was all a rather lackluster event with most of the higher seeds being eliminated early in the tournament and without Phil Mickelson or Tiger Woods playing the tourney lost alot of its's interest.



BECKMAN WINS IN MEXICO
Cameron Beckman won the Mayakoba Golf Classic for his third PGA Tour title, closing with a 3-under 67 on Sunday for a two-stroke victory over third-round leader Joe Durant and Brian Stuard.


The 40-year-old Beckman, three strokes behind Durant at the start of play Sunday, finished at 15-under 269 . Beckman also won the 2001 Southern Farm Bureau Classic and 2008 Frys.com Open.

Beckman bogeyed the sixth, got the stroke back with a birdie on the par-5 eighth and added birdies on 13 and 17 before closing with a par.


Next  week the Tour reunites in Arizona for the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Kenny Perry is 2009 Champion.




LANGER WINS IN A PLAYOFF
Bernhard Langer holed out from a bunker to win the Allianz Championship defeating John Cook on the first hole of a playoff.

Langer's ball was plugged in the bunker about 45 feet from the hole. He holed the shot for an eagle to edge Cook on the first extra hole. Cook missed a 30-foot eagle putt on the hole.

Langer and Cook closed with 5-under 67s to finish at 17-under 199 on The Old Course at Broken Sound Club. Langer earned $255,000.


Langer lost the lead when he missed a 4-foot par putt on No. 17, but rebounded with a birdie on the par-5 finishing hole to tie Cook, recovering after his tee shot landed in a bed of crushed shells.

Joey Sindelar  finished third, a stroke out of the playoff. Gene Jones  was fourth at 15 under, and Mike Reid Loren Roberts,Tom Lehman and Tim Simpson were another stroke back.





LPGA STARTS 2010 SEASON WITH A BANG
Ai Miyazato,  who started six strokes behind Suzann Pettersen going into the final round, was 6 under in a six-hole stretch midway through the round coming on to win the season-opening Honda PTT LPGA Thailand on Sunday, holing a 30-foot birdie chip on the final hole for a 9-under 63 and a one-stroke victory over Pettersen.

Miyazto birdied three of the last six holes to match the tournament record of 21 under set by Pettersen in October 2007.

Pettersen finished with a 70. She had a chance to force a playoff on the par-5 18th, but missed a 23-foot eagle try.

Taiwan’s Yani Tseng  was third, six strokes back at 15 under. Karrie Webb  and Cristie Kerr followed at 13 under, and Laura Davies, Maria Hjorth , Momoko Ueda and Song-Hee Kim  were 12 under.
Top-ranked Lorena Ochoa, the winner last year, had a 72 to tie for 18th at 6 under, while Michelle Wie closed with a 69 to tie for 22nd at 5 under.

Miyazato began her  mid-round run with a birdie on the par-4 sixth, then eagled the par-5 seventh and added birdies on Nos. 9-11 to cut Pettersen’s lead to a stroke.

Pettersen dropped a stroke on the par-4 ninth with her first bogey of the tournament, but birdied the par-5 10th for the fourth straight day to push her advantage back to two strokes. Miyazato answered by birdieing the 13th to again pull within one, and making another birdie on 15 to tie Pettersen at 20 under.

Pettersen fell back with a bogey on 16, missed a 6-foot birdie putt on 17, then settled for a birdie on 18 after missing her eagle try.

Next week the ladies move to Singapore to play the  HSBC Women's Champions.  Jiyai Shin defends



IN OTHER NEWS
Tiger Woods spoke to the world for the first time Friday since the news of his affairs were made public . He took full responsibility for his actions and vowed to be a better person and role model.

Woods, confirmed he received therapy and was headed back for more on Saturday.  He gave no indication when he would return to golf but did not rule out this season.

For a complete transcript  of Tiger's statement click here

And so the saga continues .



David Duval was unable to follow up his second-place showing last week at Pebble Beach with a good tournament this week in Mexico. Duval missed the cut at the Mayakoba Golf Classic after a second-round 79.

Duval opened with an even-par 71,  His 79 included  four bogies, one double-bogey and two triple-bogies.



That's it for this week.

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Until next time.


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