October 2010

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west-coast-links-up Congrats to the good folks at North & West Coast Links Golf who had cause to clink their glasses of San Miguel together in Valencia, Spain last week as they accepted the award for “European Golf Destination of the Year 2011” from the International Golf Tour Operators. 350 international golf tour operators from 52 countries chose the North and West over competition from the world famous Old Course at St. Andrews aswell as Spanish and Portuguese venues.

North & West Coast Links Golf  comprises the 12 golf courses :Connemara Championship Links, Carne Golf Links, Enniscrone Golf Club,Co. Sligo Golf Club, Donegal Golf Club, Narin & Portnoo Golf Club,Rosapenna Golf Links, Portsalon Golf Club, Ballyliffin Golf Club (pictured), Portstewart Golf Club, Royal Portrush Golf Club and Ardglass Golf Club.

 

The Irish Open will appear on the European Tour’s 2011 Race To Dubai schedule when it is unveiled this evening.  The date pencilled in is July 28-31.  In the venue column on the Tour’s website will appear TBA, but after the enormous success of the 2010 staging and the fact that the infrastructure is already in place, it seems highly likely that Killarney will again be the venue.  The Kerry venue was unanimously judged by the players as being the best stop on this year’s Tour and adding in the fact that spectator numbers spiked in the region make it the obvious choice for a second staging. Watch this space.

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Winner Alright: Last week we tipped Ian Poulter at 15/1.  That’s two in a row. Can we make it three?  Here are my betting tips for the 2010 Dubai World Championship, the European Tour finale.

Dubai World Championship presented by DP World

Jumeirah Golf Estates

Dubai, United Arab Emirates 25 Nov 2010 - 28 Nov 2010

Lee Westwood 8/1

I would love nothing more than to give you a long odds winner to make it three in a row to finish off the season, but there is just no way you can ignore Lee Westwood from 8/1. The Race To Dubai may be between major winners Kaymer and GMac this season, but Westwood lies third even having missed a chunk of the season with injury. He showed no ill effects from his injured calf at the recent HSBC Champions where he finished second for his ninth top-10 of the season. The man from Worksop “bullied the field” here last year and his final round 64 saw him win by six after a legendary putting display. A similar dose would decimate the field this time around.

Rory McIlroy 15/1

Rors came into this event last year with a lot on his mind. The pressure from sponsors, and the weight of expectation to win The Race To Dubai (where he had four top fives in the build up to lead the rankings coming in) was too much to expect the young man to shoulder. The Earth course however suited McIlroy last year where he found the new putting surfaces very much to his liking; so much so that he canned his way to third. If you were to call anything a frailty with Rory, it’s his driving accuracy; his GIR stats belie the fact that he’s rarely inside the top-30 players off the tee. And tour rough makes it tough to get close to pins, even for the best. A good week with the Big Dog is the key to victory for McIlroy. The Holywood man comes into the event this year on the back of two decent finishes of sixth and fifth in Hong Kong and the WGC respectively.

Francesco Molinari: 24/1

Italian golf is on the up and up with brothers Francesco and Edoardo Molinari and now Matteo Manassero dominating the Tour. Francesco is my pick for this week as I think he possess all the attributes to contend. Okay he may have finished 30th here last year, but the Francesco who will tee it up this RCValentinaMolinariFRANCESCOweek is a vastly improved player than then. Straighter and longer off the tee (where he ceded the guts of 15 yards to Westwood last year), more accurate than ever with his irons, more confident on the greens with his new ghost putter and having shed that top weight of the winning monkey off his back at the WGC-HSBC recently it all makes for an irresistible concoction.

Pic: Francesco is’nt doin’ a line with Minister Mary Coughlan is he?

Long Odds Shout- Anders Hansen: 130/1

Even though Peter Hanson has had a cracking season and even top 10’d in Dubai last year, we’re plumping for Dane Anders Hansen to produce a podium finish this week. Hansen was impressive in Singapore two weeks back when he surged to finish second behind behind GMac and kept up his form in Hong Kong placing 11th. His form with the flat stick has been the difference of late and if he can bring his stroke to Dubai, where he lead the field in driving accuracy last year, a real sting at 130/1 is in prospect. A proven winter performer.

Irish Value- Gareth Maybin: 90/1

maybin Four top-10’s this season say Gareth Maybin is steadily improving. Shares the same problem of getting over the line with the Irish rugby pack but it will happen. A tough final round of 76 cost him a win at Valderrama and that destructive tendency resurfaced in Singapore when a Saturday 79 spoiled the week. However Maybster got some good advice on the range last week and finished with a storming 61 in Hong Kong for a top-10 finish. The difference on Sunday? Straight off the tee. If he can keep it going this week, a podium finish is not beyond the realms of possibility.

 

Betting tips 2010 Dubai World Championship

carol_vorderman_countdown_103 (1)  With just this week’s Dubai gold encrusted World Championship left on the European Tour’s 2010 calender we enlisted the help of our office cardboard Carol Vorderman (pre facelift) cutout to help us deciphor just who the hell can win the Race To Dubai in the final event.

For Martin Kaymer To Win The Race he needs to:race prize fund

Earn €291,000 more than GMac for the week.  If he wins, he’s guaranteed the Race win. If he comes second to anybody but GMac, he wins.

For Graeme McDowell To Win The Race he needs to:

Basically, win the event.  The 303 grand difference between first and second would be enough to overcome the 291 grand difference.Other than winning, it gets tougher for Graeme as the prize fund decreases rapidly from third down (it’s still sickly big but you get my drift).

For Lee Westwood to win The Race he needs to:

Wait until next year, play more events, mind his calf and win a bloody major!

Race To Dubai Rankings

race to dubai rankings

from Jay Busbee at Devil Ball Golf.

Early Thursday morning, Tiger Woods joined ESPN Radio's Mike & Mike for about 17 minutes of conversation. Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch reported that Woods' camp placed several restrictions on the interview, including no callers and no references to certain touchy events. But we at Devil Ball have discovered* an email which seems to indicate that there were far more restrictions than that. Now, for the first time, we can reveal just how much Tiger Woods controlled this interview:

1-tigers-interview-demands

ian poulter ubs hong kong open third round leaderboard  Ian Poulter won the Hong Kong Open today with a solid final round of 67 to win by one shot from a surging Matteo Mannasero and Simon Dyson.  Poulter was without a nervy moment, taking only his second bogey of the week on the last hole, but in truth he was always in charge.

Another winner from our weekly tips.  Make sure to check our Dubai tips next week.

 

 buddy darby road to recovery conferenceWe’ve spent the day (with the hard men) down the back of the The Golf Business “Road To Recovery” conference in the new Dublin Convention Centre.  Organized by Carr golf services the event brought together 250 frontline golf personnel from all around the country for the first time to discuss the ‘cause of’ and ‘solution to’ Irish Golf’s problems.

Pic: Charles P. “Buddy” Darby III; a close relative of Davis Love III and Charles Howell III

The conference heard first from Dermot Desmond; what he talked about, I still don’t know but it definitely had a low carbon footprint- it could be used again and again for a variety of purposes. That may be a bit unfair-  he did mention golf at the beginning and the end, which was nice! 

He was followed by Kiawah Island’s Buddy Darby who highlighted some of the ideas used in Doonbeg to return to profit. Buddy came up with the quote of the day, “You can lead a horse to water, but you cant make him ………..a duck!”.

Mark Nolan from Dromoland Castle did a brilliant Brian Lenihan impression on it and allowed delegates to roleplay being members of the IMF, inviting us to view his business books over the past 10 years and gave his projections “going forward”.

Amid the charts and arrows, doom and gloom, a couple of serious points arose from the conference.

  1. An all encompassing Irish Golfing Body is desperately needed.  Such a body would represent everyone in the Irish golfing business.  It could and would lobby the government with a unified voice.  It could grab the airline bosses, and wedgie them, until they agree to flying in the golfers again. 
  2. Golf clubs need to share in order to survive.  This could be anything from ideas, to staff, to machinery, but hey, we all just need to get on.

So well done Roddy and Marty Carr, good stuff.  Just make sure ye take Buddy’s advice and now that we’re all lead to water, help make us ducks!

ubs hong kong open 2010 second round highlightsHalloween may be over but there’s a Poultergeist on top of the leaderboard at the halfway point of the UBS Hong Kong Open. Poults shot a super round of 60, seven shots better than his opening salvo to set the target at 13 under.  The Englishman should have been joined at the top by Rory McIlroy but his round of 66 was blighted by a double bogey on the last which left him two shots behind.

Poulter’s round of 60 contained ten birdies - including five in succession from the seventhUBS hong kong open 2010 second round leaderboard

UBS Hong Kong Open 2010 Second Round Leaderboard

Here it is. Tiger’s new $50 million singles pad comes equipped with chipping and putting areas, pools and a gym complete with an oxygen therapy room.

The l0,000-square-foot, two-story home at the south end of the Island town, sits on 12-acres. He purchased the land for $44.5 million during 2006 and 2007.

There’s even appears to be one tee box in the southeast corner to hit drivers.

Electronic Arts Inc. announced plans for EA SPORTS PGA TOUR Golf Challenge, a new, casual golf game for Facebook that launches later this year.

PGA TOUR Golf Challenge will features real-time 3D gameplay on Facebook. The game will allow participants to play rounds of golf to earn experience and level up through their career while also unlocking world-famous golf courses.

Daily challenges will allow players to compete against their Facebook friends, with weekly champions crowned as players vie for golf supremacy on Facebook.

Tailored to a casual gaming audience, the game features accessible, easy to master game play mechanics, including one-click swing, easy aiming with a mouse or keyboard, an assortment of custom clubs, and a variety of shot types.

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No soon had Ian Poulter swished his white Cobra ZL light-sabre in Singapore but pics of the new Taylormade R11 driver have been sent in by a reader to mygolfspy.com.

Black sole and white crown, as my local car dealer says “she’ll be hard to keep clean”.

Dont expect too much tech talk from Taylormade about this driver as they’ve already max’d out the science bit with these R series drivers.

It also looks like the first driver ever from Taylormade to come without a shaft!

 

 

traxion lite Dear Santy, please could you give me season 2 of The Wire and a pair of those Adidas Traxion Lite golf shoes.  They look deadly.  Like a pair of runners with permanent grips on the shoes.  Cant wait until a committee member tries to kick me off the practice green for wearing sneakers or for wearing them on the good carpet in the clubhouse.  Pic: Can I have a pint of cider please?

ubs hong kong open round 1 leaderboard Rory McIlroy, who’s come close during the last two stagings,  fired a seven under par 63 to lie just one shot behind Mark Brown after the first round of the UBS Hong Kong Open.

In perfect scoring conditions the highlight of round one was a hole in one from Simon Dyson on the par three 12th.

US Open champion Graeme McDowell – on a mission to reel in Martin Kaymer shot a five under 65 and is alongside Ireland's Damien McGrane, with Shane Lowry solid at two under on the leaderboard.

Donal mugshotIf you’re involved with a club, have a product, if you’re involved in Tourism or work in the golf industry and are heading to the “Road To Recovery” Golf Business Conference this Friday, then please rock up and shake hands.

Golfcentraldaily.com is 100% Irish is the top golf site in Ireland and has a growing UK and US readership.  It strives to be informative, humorous and fresh and exists to promote golf especially in Ireland. During the regular season I team up with the Irish Examiner as the “SpinDoctor” to bring the fun to the broadsheets.

There’s loads I can do to promote your club, product, or business through golfcentraldaily’s social media.

Our “Doc’s Dawn Raid” club testing mornings in association with Golfbidder are hugely successful in promoting the host clubs and we’re planning a Pro tips video series over the Winter months where Pro’s can get PR for themselves and their clubs, again in association with Golfbidder, who reach a massive Irish, UK and European audience through their newsletters.

We love covering new products, golf fitness, doing what’s in the bag articles for Irish amateurs and Pro’s and promoting products through weekly quizzes which add value for our readers.

 More importantly all these things cost nothing!

Tonnes of ideas waiting to be explored by a captive audience, so see you Friday!

adam scott barclays singapore open winner 2010

Winner alright- a message from Doc:

Last week we brought home Adam Scott in Singapore at an impressive 21/1.  It may be our 12th cash in of the season but we still await a betting partner.  Here are our UBS Hong Kong Open 2010 Betting Preview and Tips.  Odds quoted are early and may improve closer to start of event.  We’d love say where the odds came from and put their logo and link here for thousands to see, but hey, the brilliant marketing minds that work for betting companies must think their money is better spent throwing it at Sky Sports for TV ads!

UBS Hong Kong Open

Hong Kong GC

Fanling, Hong Kong 18 Nov 2010 - 21 Nov 2010

Graeme McDowell 12/1

gmac funny pic GMac is grinding so hard right now because he knows a win in Hong Kong this week would see him overtake the absent Martin Kaymer in the Race To Dubai heading into the Tour Finale. What a season he has had with a US Open sandwiched in between a win in Wales and Valderrama, not to mention holing the winning Ryder Cup putt. McDowell has, like Jimenez, a chance to win a fourth title of 2010 but for him the stakes are much higher. I believe GMac deserves to win the Race To Dubai and even if this course is a hell of a lot easier than some he has won on of late his form last week is too good to ignore. Among the top five best players in the world just now? And has destiny on his side?

 

Ian Poulter 15/1

ian poulter funny The straightest driver pretty much all week in Singapore, Poults paid the price for a bad tee shot on the 15th in the final round leading to a double bogey that sent him sliding down the leaderboard. After winning in Singapore last year Poulter came to Hong Kong and tied fifth so has to be worth another fiver given that the press commitments will be fewer this week. Notwithstanding his slip to tied sixth last Sunday, Poults has still managed to finish in the top-15 in four of the last five events and is to be written off at your peril for the title again this week.

 

 

Miguel Angel Jimenez 21/1

miguel angel jimenez funny A stunning five under par closing round in Singapore last week saw Miguel bag another top 10 finish and with it fire a shot over the bows of the rest of the field heading to Hong Kong this week. With wins in Dubai, France and Switzerland already under his belt, the vino swilling Spaniard has the unique chance to go truly global with a another win on a course he has tasted victory on twice in the last six seasons. Can he do it all over again? A pint of San Miguel says he can.

Thongchai Jaidee 44/1

thongchai jaidee thai paratrooper Its showtime for ex-paratrooper Thongchai Jaidee as his season kicks off around this time. The Thai who never sleeps in a bed was unlucky not to win in 2008 when he tied second behind Jimenez. Add to that two other top tens albeit before 2008 and his record here is impressive. Caught the eye in Portugal recently with a top-10 and hasn’t been outside the top-30 in his last two events. Best run-in since 2008, now can Jaidee swoop in for his fifth tour win?

 

Peter Lawrie 65/1

peter and bag resized[4] Torn between Peter Lawrie and Soren Kjeldsen for this tip but I’m going with the stealthy Dubliner. Lawrie lies an impressive 35th in the Race To Dubai and is set to tee it up in the big money event next week. However the Castleknock pro likes to line up the smaller events and with the extra emphasis on putting in Hong Kong, this could be a big week. Seventh last season and a good bet to finish in the top 10 again.

 

They had to wait an extra day to complete the Barclays Singapore Open, but Adam Scott didnt mind as he claimed his third Barclays Singapore Open title at Sentosa Golf Club.

The Australian plotted his way to a closing round of 68 to finish 17 under par, three ahead of Anders Hansen.

Scott’s nearest challenger looked to be defending champion Ian Poulter but the Englishman’s title defence effectively ended at the 15th when he pushed his drive right leading to double bogey while Scott birdied.

Graeme McDowell claimed a tie for third and cut further Martin Kaymer’s lead in The Race to Dubai, living on his wits at times on his way to a courageous 70.

Robert Garrigus put his St Jude Classic disappointment firmly behind him as he claimtourn_logo.gifed the Childrens Miracle Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Network Cinderella Classic yesterday.  Garrigus pants were bone dry this time as he shot an 8-under 64 to win the event and keep his Tour card.

robert garrigus childrens miracle network classic 2010 Garrigus finished three shots clear of Roland Thatcher who squandered a four shot lead bogeying two of the last three holes. One grain of solace for was the news that a clutch par on the last from five feet secured second place and a cheque jumped him from 179th to 122nd to keep his playing privileges.

"You'll never see a happier guy who just vomited away a tournament," Thatcher said.childrens miracle network classic 2010 final round leaderboard

Thatcher joined Mark Wilson (123) and Michael Connell (115) as the only players to climb inside the top 125 after starting the week outside of it.

Troy Merritt also had reason to smile after he defeated Rickie Fowler and Aaron Baddeley in a playoff to win the $1 million Kodak Challenge.

 

stuart appleby Stuart Appleby emerged victorious in the JBWere Masters with two birdies on the closing holes, but Tiger Woods  stole much of the limelight with a superb final round at the Victoria Golf Club yesterday.

Appleby shot a six-unjbwere masters 2010 resultsder 65 to finish at 10 under, one ahead of Adam Bland who couldn't quite complete a wire to wire win.

Woods played the last six holes in six under including two eagles  to surge up the leaderboard and finish fourth.

Following his round Woods committed to return next year, and hopes next time to bring some more top US players with him.

 

Report from European Tour website:

adam scott barclays singapore open 2010 third round Adam Scott holds a slender one shot lead over defending champion Ian Poulter and Korea's Kyung-nam Kang at the Barclays Singapore Open after a dramatic third round at Sentosa Golf Club.

The Australian had started the day with a two shot lead but was dragged into an epic tussle with playing partner Poulter down the back nine of the Serapong Course, the 2005 and 2006 winner eventually emerging with the narrowest of leads.

The 30 year old signed for a round of 69 to sit 14 under par, while Poulter carded two birdies and an eagle in a round of 68.

World Number 567 Kang is also right in the frame having seemingly been out of the running when he ran up a double bogey seven at the seventh - only to respond with a brilliant back nine 30 which included five unanswered birdies.

Both Scott and Poulter opened their accounts with birdies at the par three second, the Englishman hitting his tee shot to within six feet.

barclays singapore open 2010 round three leaderboard

Full article: http://www.europeantour.com/europeantour/season=2010/tournamentid=2010078/news/newsid=131494.html#scott+retains+narrow+advantage

robbie-fowler Proud Chris Stroud had the crowd cheering aloud as he shot a 10-under 62 in the opening round of the Magical Children's Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Kingdom Miracle Network and Pluto Too Classic in Orlando Florida.

Margaret Thatcher’s son Roland was three shots off the pace, with four others tied for third including Rickie Fowler.
Globetrotting Fowler made eight birdies and two bogeys after returning from the HSBC Champions in Shanghai and held the clubhouse lead for most of the day.

Pic: Fowler after his 8th birdie of the day. He’s a A-league legend

The Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard caught up with Tiger Wood’s swing coach Sean Foley this week at the 2010 Magical Miracle Children’s Wonderland of Disney Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Classic, and quizzed him about Tiger’s swing.

“I don’t see this as a swing change. I just see that we can do some trimming. Take a minimalist approach to it,” said Foley, who spent the morning working with longtime client Sean O’Hair over at Disney. “It’s an ideal mick-foley-chair-307position to be in as a teacher to have that canvas.”

Although Woods is a renowned worker away from the PGA Tour spotlight, Foley said he hasn’t been closing the Isleworth practice tee with him.

Pic: Swing coach Foley. Takes no shit.

“People think intense and they think quantity,” Foley said. “The thing about Tiger is he’s obviously an expert at practicing. . . . He has an unbelievable ability to concentrate.”

Foley said his sessions with Woods are never longer than an hour and a half. “It’s not every day, seven hours a day,” he said.

Full golf channel article http://www.thegolfchannel.com/shag-bag/foley-dont-swing-change-40320/

Headline of the year??

tiger-woods-shhhh Tiger Woods sits nine shots off the pace after the second round of the 2010 JBWere Australian Masters at  Kingston Heath.

The defending champion could only manage a one-over-par 72 to lie on one-under for the tournament, nine shots behind leader Adam Bland who added a 67 to his opening 65.

Woods battled his swing in the strong wind suffering four bogeys.

"It was tougher today when the wind blows hard... I was struggling a little bit today but I was trying to be as committed as I could be, and it was a little more difficult than it should have been but I got through it," he said after.

Surprise of the day was Sergio Garcia’s name near the top of the leaderboard.  The Spaniard showed some sexy course management on his to compiling a 65 to climb to four-under. "We were making the right decisions at the time and (if you) put that with the way I hit the ball it was one of those rounds where everything was on.”

 

Adam Scott sits atop the leaderboard at the Barclays Singapore Open after consecutive rounds of 65. The champion of 2005 and 2006, leads Ian Poulter by two shots.

Like the Irish Open of two years back the field were affected by a four-hour delay caused by thunderstorms on the opening day, after which a section of the field were able to complete their second rounds in perfect conditions.

Scott had opened with a six under par round on the longer Serapong Course and started out with a 29 on the easier Tanjong set-up. He faltered somewhat on the back nine recovered late on to reach 12 under par at the halfway stage.

Ian Poulter produced a sizzling inward 29  on the Tanjong back nine to reduce a nine shot deficit to just two heading into the weekend.  The highlight was a crowd pleasing 80 foot left-to-right putt on the last to reach ten under.

Best of the Irish is Graeme McDowell  who lies third.

barclays singapore open 2010 round 2 leaderboard

 

tiger woods forestry Tiger Woods doesn't have many secrets left but one little known fact about the multiple major winner is that he spent a period of his youth studying Forestry Operations in Ireland.

Woods was apparently so good at the art of tree felling that he preferred a 2-iron to a chainsaw.  Little surprise then when Woods decided to chop down a tree at the HSBC Championship which he considered unstable.  The crowd roared with delight as Wood’s took less than four seconds to fell the lumber.

The American was in for a shock later when angry club officials informed him that the tree was actually a sacred 10,000 year old specimen, supposedly carrying some of fidelity curse.

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