Tuesday, June 30, 2009
SpinDoctor 30th June: What’s In Anthony Kim’s Bag, Bloggy- Duval, Barnes and O’Gara, TM Balero Putter, Rules of Golf Quiz, France Open Tips, AT&T Tips, Cheyenne Woods, Allen Stanford and Vijay and more...
Under The Microscope: Anthony Kim
Born June 19, 1985 (age 24)
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, USA
Height 5 ft 10 in
Residence Dallas, Texas, USA
College University of Oklahoma
Turned professional 2006
PGA Tour Wins: 2
Watching this week’s defending champion Kim and our own Rory McIlroy playing together in Bethpage, it seemed almost like a dress rehearsal for the battles these two are set to fight in years to come. Now 24, Kim admits to having gone about life on tour completely the wrong the way in the beginning. His penchant for partying was garnering more headlines than his stellar talent. “I tied for second at the Valero Texas Open in my first tournament and said, ‘This is a piece of cake. I don't even need to practice’. Why should I listen to the older guys?" With valuable lessons learned since, Kim is now firmly pencilled onto the timesheet for future golfing superstardom.
In May 2008, Kim won his first PGA Tour tournament at the Wachovia Championship, defeating former British Open champion Ben Curtis by five shots. That July, he won the AT&T National, hosted by Tiger Woods, defeating Fredrik Jacobson by two shots. Other highlights of Kim’s career to date are his mauling of Sergio Garcia 5 and 4 in Ryder Cup singles and his amazing 11 birdies in the second round of this years Masters at Augusta.
What’s In Anthony Kim’s Bag
Bloggy Underfoot: Pressure Is For Tyres
Deep depression followed by anger, followed by a period of monk like contemplation was the order of the day last Saturday. As soon as Ronan got the ball, everyone around me roared “Don’t kick it away”. Instead, up the ball went, and ROG unfortunately timed his run perfectly to tag the Bok. If only he had stuck to his word. He promised faithfully that in pressurised situations he would stop and take a sip of Lucozade Sport; surely the delay involved in taking on board a few mls of liquid energy would have seen him arrive at the crime scene just a after the Bok landed. A draw would have resulted and we would all be psyched for a decider next week. Just what makes people do the daftest things under pressure?
Take the US Open and Ricky Barnes, the former US amateur champion. As an amateur, I remember Barnes as being naturally brilliant with a swing all his own. During the backswing there were elbows flying and knees buckling and during the downswing there were wrists breaking and hips lunging, yet the ball went perfectly straight every time. When he turned pro, all the moving parts of Barnes swing, fell out of sync and his game left him. What resulted was a couple of years of complete swing rehabilitation, which brought him into contention in Bethpage. However in the rarefied atmosphere of the final group on Sunday in Bethpage, the swing he worked so hard to build deserted him again resulting in that painful frittering away of shots we have become so used to watching.
I was especially happy for David Duval. When he was at the top, I did my usual thing and judged the book by the cover. I decided back then there was something sinister about a man who always wore shades, never smiled and walked liked he had a poker up his bum. He was world number one, shooting 59 and winning every week. He didn’t even have to look at the ball when he was hitting for God’s sake! In my defence, I was much younger then, and wasn’t alone in wanting anyone but Duval to win. It’s all different now. Duval is no longer aloof and distant. He is now a tragic hero who fell from the very top, with some weird form of vertigo. Of course there was more to it than that. While he was at the top, Duval hated the circus around him and his competitive instincts dwindled. He simply craved family life. His golfing slump coincided with his marriage to Susie and the fulfilment of his deep desire to be a normal family man. Inheriting three step kids from his wife’s previous marriage, just added to the requirement to be more full time a father than any top professional golfer could ever afford to be. But now David Duval is back and just about successful enough that everyone loves him. His fellow professionals are delighted to see him too, the most ringing of endorsements coming from former European Ryder Cuppers who provided glowing character references for the Shaded One. You know the way when an Irishman describes a fella as being “Sound”, it has to be immediately followed by a story about drink, in which the subject displays his sound-ness by either buying or drinking lots of it? Well, to a man, every former member of the European Ryder Cup team declared Duval as being “sound”. Apparently he was the only American to embrace the pear and party until dawn in the European team room whatever the manner of drubbing received.
I actually feel a bit guilty about the manner in which I have dealt with Lucas Glover’s win. My kids called him “Mucous Blubber”. I am already transferring the dislike I had for Duval all those years ago to poor old Lucas. When he sunk the winning putt there was a muted sigh from the huge crowd. He didn’t help his cause by seeming about as happy with his major win as one of those trade union officials going in to those make or break talks. Actually screw the guilt. I feel my Lions anger resurfacing again. I want Duval or Barnes to win the British Open. Anyone but Glover. And remember, if you ever find yourself in a situation where you have the ball in your hands with seconds left on the clock, whatever happens don’t kick it away!
Dr. and The Medic: Spinning Your Chips
You are a short distance from the hole, the greens are fast and you want to create spin to control the ball.
To help generate spin, cover the ball with your sternum at impact to create a steeper swinging plane.
Always keep your chest above the ball during your short shots. You do not need to lean back away from the target to apply spin. Set the ball behind the centre of your stance with most of your body weight on your forward leg. Open your stance and set the clubface square. It might help to think of rocking your shoulders back and through the ball to help you stay on top of it. It is critical to have the centre of your chest just above or slightly ahead of the ball as the clubhead at impact.
The Doc’s Rules Quiz
Do you really know the rules of golf? Try these questions and text your answers to 087-3140467. The winner will receive a Kartel shirt just in time for Captain’s Day!
Q.1 - In stroke play, Tony looks into Donal’s bag to determine which club Donal used for his last stroke. What is the ruling?
Is it A: Tony incurs a penalty of two strokes, B. Tony is disqualified or C: There is no penalty.
Q.2 – True or False: A ball is in a bunker when any part of it touches the bunker.
Q3 – True or False: A player has fourteen clubs in his bag. At the first hole he slices his drive out of bounds and in frustration snaps the shaft of his driver over his knee. The player may run to his car and get a replacement driver.
Thanks to all who entered last weeks Caption Contest and congrats to the winner Johnny Downes, Ballinlough, Cork who wins a classy Kartel shirt compliments of Golfstyle Galway. All the best captions are on the blog.
I Want One Of Those: Taylormade Balero Putter
The very latest in smooth-rolling AGSI-technology, this is the forgiving Rossa Monza Spider Balero Putter from TaylorMade.
To maximise your confidence and performance on the greens, TaylorMade have introduced a Ball-in-Cup design on this putter. This visual aid makes it simple to line up the clubface with the intended line at address. Additionally, the appearance reinforces the image of a golf ball against the centre of the back lip of the cup for a firm, accelerating stroke while discouraging deceleration. Impossible to miss with this! €175 in Golfstyle, Galway.
Bet Your Balls-
Odds with thanks to Boylesports
Open de France ALSTOM
Le Golf National
02 Jul 2009 - 05 Jul 2009
Graeme Storm: 20/1
Englishman Graeme Storm is coming into form just in time for his favourite event of the year in Paris. Tied fourth last week with a five under final round in the wet conditions in Germany. Storm’s top 15 driving and putting stats mean there still is a little room for improvement. Won the event in 2007 edging out Soren Hansen by a stroke.
Soren Hansen: 40/1
Soren took a deserving rest after his superb, if somewhat under the radar tied sixth finish in Bethpage. The wily Dane has three top-three finishes in Paris since 2005; he finished third last year behind Larrazabal and Monty, second in 2007 and third in 2005. His cumulative earnings over that period in Paris alone are over €1 million. Surely a win must be coming soon for Hansen who lies 25th in the Race to Dubai.
Richard Green: 33/1
I’m torn between Green and Niclas Fasth for this last Paris pick. A win is on the horizon for last week’s best final round putter Fasth, but he still needs to iron out some kinks with the driver. Thus I’m plumping for lefty Richard Green, the hardworking journeyman from Oz. Le Golf National has been a happy hunting ground for Green since coming second behind back to back winner Remesy in 2004. He has since managed a seventh in 2006 and fourth last year. Nice final round 66 for a top ten finish last week made me sit up and take notice.
Monday Jun 29 – Sunday Jul 5, 2009
Congressional Country Club · Bethesda, MD
Jim Furyk: 16/1
It’s an all star field this week at Congressional with Tiger hosting. Since we never bet on Woods, my pick of the top players is Jim Furyk. A victim of the weather at Bethpage, Furyk failed to fulfil the promise he showed in coming second at The Memorial. He has however finished in the top three in the last two stagings of this fledgling event.
Robert Allenby: 25/1
The moons are aligning perfectly for Allenby to make his usual few quid in the Summer months. Missed the cut in Bethpage after a top five at the St Jude signalled form. Tied third last year and went on to tie seventh at The Open. Top tenned also in 2007. An educated each way chance.
Rod Pampling: 66/1
After a number of years on the US Tour, Pampling is back plying his trade in Europe this year. He returns to the US for this week by virtue of having finished tied third in 2008. Pampling obviously likes the Congressional layout, he finished in the top ten at the 2005 Booz Allen Classic which was also held at this venue. Each way shot only.
Former US president and World War II general, Dwight D. Eisenhower has been elected to the World Golf Hall of Fame. The general will go in along with other members of the Class of 2009, having been selected in the Lifetime Achievement Category. One can only imagine who his competition was in the category. The best we can come with is Bill Clinton in dodgy woollens in Ballybunion.
Tiger’s Niece Misses Cut
Cheyenne Woods, carded rounds of 75 and 74 in her first-ever appearance in an LPGA Tour event at the Wegmans LPGA. She missed the cut by four strokes. Cheyenne is the daughter of Earl Woods Jr., Tiger's half-brother. How does Cheyenne's debut compare with her Uncle Tiger's? Tiger Woods was 16 years old when he played his first PGA Tour event, the 1992 Nissan Los Angeles Open at Riviera. He finished on four over, one better than Cheyenne but also missed the cut. Watch this space.
Singh Bats For Stanford
Vijay Singh offered to help pay the $500,000 bond for troubled financial and cricketing mogul Allen Stanford, but US law would not allow it because the three-time major champion is not a U.S. citizen. Stanford is accused of swindling investors out of $7 billion but has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Singh has an endorsement deal with Stanford Financial reportedly worth $8 million and though no longer being paid continues to wear the Stanford logo on his visor and shirt. “Vijay’s opinion is that Stanford has yet to be proven guilty and until then has chose to act supportively,” said Dave Haggith, a spokesman at IMG, the management company that represents Singh.
Ricky To Cash in
Who says nobody remembers who came second? Ricky Barnes, who tied second at Bethpage was the big winner when it comes to sponsorship endorsements. Verve, the energy drink, who had a logo on Ricky’s muscle-bound shirt, are set to pay $3 million for the privilege. Barnes who also wore a tiny Wilson Golf logo on his painter cap (or train driver cap or Cuban rebel leader cap) more than made up for the disappointing showing of their supreme leader Padraig Harrington, resulting in a certain Wilson future contract renewal. Wilson have also had to ramp up production of the Ricky style hats to cope to meet the huge demand. Personally I think Ricky is a dead ringer for Lynette from Desperate Housewives!