May 2011

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By stand in reporter Lanod Sehguh

Doc in his "kitchen"
Distinguished golf internet sensation Donal Hughes (aka Doc) today strongly (and unequivocally, if that’s a word) refuted claims that he was engaging in excessive alcohol consumption during the final round of the US Open.  Regulars at Hughes’ local pub reported the star as “acting bananas with a Rory wig in front of the TV” during the final round.

We have also received this exclusive photo which appears to back up the claims.
In a statement released this morning from the gable of his house, Dr. Hughes said “Yes, I can confirm that this is me, but there was no drink involved whatsoever, and this picture was taken right here in the kitchen of my house.  I admit things like the potted plant, collection boxes, a club lotto poster, KP peanuts and the dim lighting makes it look like a pub, but trust me it’s my kitchen.  I’m into that sort of thing.”
More as it emerges.

In a statement released today by officials patrolling the Mexico-US border, they described as “the best news in the world” the return of Andres Gonzales after his US Open exploits.  Gonzales had been working at the busy border crossing for the past five years where his no-nonense approach to dealing with drug running hoodlums has become notorious.
Known at the border as “Dog” because he styles himself on TV’s bounty hunting  Duane “Dog” Chapman, Gonzales became extremely proficient at the game of golf through years of pelting pinnacles at nasty low down gringos from the back of 1980 Toyota Landcruiser.
 Gonzales US Open participation brought mixed emotions from work colleagues.  Chief border police officer Julio Cesar Chavez said “We were delighted to see Andres on dee TV, but dee cree-mee-nals went loco at dee border”.  Gonzales was today back at his post, in sweltering heat, drinking tequila, taking bribes and fighting cree-mee-nals.

You may have heard about Phil Mickleson, Bubba Watson and Davis Love going to visit the President of the United States on the eve of last week’s US Open. Well, the trio presented Mr. Obama with some golfing gifts.
Incoming Ryder Cup captain Davis Love gave Barack a customized Scotty Cameron Studio Select Newport 2 putter and an invite to the Europe/USA clash in Medinah next year. Phil Mickelson presented the President Obama, who is also a “leftie”with three Callaway X Forged wedges and a 9.5° Callaway Diablo Octane driver. The wedges (a 56°, 60° and 64°) was crafted by Roger Cleveland himself and embossed with PREZ "44" on the back. Speaking about the wedges Roger Cleveland said, "I weighted them so they wouldn't go any further left!" Bubba Watson’s gift was a replica of his own driver, a Ping G15 (7.5°) with a Grafalloy Bi-Matrix shaft.
A white house spokesman said after “The President is now fully stocked sportswise. He owns two drivers, wedges, a putter and a hurley”. Good man Enda!

2011 BMW International Open Betting Preview and Tips, Golfclub München Eichenried

Early odds on Betfair

Francesco Molinari 25/1

francesco Missed the cut last week at Congressional but could that be a blessing in disguise this week? This Eichenreid layout may well suit Molinari’s short but accurate driving and iron game. Got his first top 10 in Italy two weeks back, his best result since the WGC Cadillac and he will be looking to build on that this week. The USGA did him no favours with the all Italy draw at the US Open.

Anders Hansen 44/1

andersjpg Anders has finished in the top 20 in his last four events including two second places at the Open de Espana and last time out in Wales. The in form Dane has close in the past here in Germany. After tying fourth in 2007 he lost out in a playoff to home favourite Martin Kaymer in 2008. Great chance of a fourth Tour win.



Henrik Stenson 44/1

henrik-stenson_1400217c Okay I’ve had my fun slagging Henrik but if he can drive anywhere like he did last week at Congressional he is sure to be in shake up come Sunday. It’s easy to highlight his inadequacies but an in form Stenson is a six time proven winner on the European Tour and claimed the 2009 Players at Sawgrass. Bound to be buoyed by his Congressional form and don’t forget he won here in Germany in 2006. Picked up an injury in the final round last week, let’s hope it’s not serious.

Pablo Larrazabal 70/1

larrazabal Pablo wears his heart on his sleeve and can be his own worst enemy at times but he’s still a serious golfer. Larrazabal had this event in the bag last year before messing up the final three holes to fall into a tie for third. Showing good recent form too, after finishing fourth at Celtic Manor and 11th in Italy last time out.

Niclas Fasth 160/1

fasth Sky Sports Radar describing Fasth’s professionalism says “Niclas eats lettuce and drinks water”. The 2007 winner here has really put his game through the ringer in the last few years but we began to see signs of an improvement last time out in Italy where he tied sixth. You can bet your bottom dollar that nobody will be better prepared this week.


Check out Brian Keogh’s brilliant website for everything about Irish golf.  Here’s a link Brian’s report on Rory McIlroy’s win from Congressional.

rory first round close up “Celtic Tiger” Rory McIlroy roared to an incredible eight-shot US Open victory last night to give American golf the hero it badly needs.

The 22-year old Holywood idol brushed aside all doubts about his ability to close when fired a two under 69 to decimate the field with an amazing 16 under par total and smash the US Open scoring record of 272 held by the likes of Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus.

Lets just break it down. Rory McIlory is a Major Champion. I’m not a journo but:

  • youngest winner in 88 years (taking into account 88 years ago they were not that great)
  • finished at a record 16 under (that’s just criminal)
  • beat the living lard out of Tiger Woods old records
  • Won by 8 from Jason Day
  • Big hug for Dad Gerry on Fathers Day

And for all you Americans out there, this is the 63 mile route your US Open Trophy will be taking across the tiny but huge in character island of Ireland!


US President Barack Obama’s pockets were bulging yesterday as he and his big Bohner beat the bejaysus out of VP Joe Biden and some other old fart just put there to make everyone else look good.

Bohner was rock solid throughout, helping Obama, useless at golf, to win the cash.  “We played for 13 trillion dollars” Obama said after the round.  “I checked out Bohner’s shaft and it inspired me.  It’s just so long, straight and firm” the Commander in hankerChief added.

There had been rumours that Speaker of the House Bohner had gone a bit soft on Obama, but after rubbing some cream on his head, Bohner really came to life in the sweltering conditions.

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rory 3rd round Rors is set to land his first major after another imperious performance in round three of the US Open.  This is the fourth straight Major he has lead but this time, there can be no catching his eight shot 54-hole lead, the second largest in 111 years. McIlroy leads by eight shots from YE Yang and by nine from Westwood, Day and Garrigus.  This is a script written in Holywood and Rory just has one scene to shoot.

So where did Rory McIlroy go after his record breaking second round at Congressional?  To the range to work on his swing? To the putting green to groom that new stroke? To the tour truck for a back massage? To the physio truck? Answer: none of the above; Rors went off to see the Hangover 2.

"It's amazing. Incredible," said Steve Stricker, who finished 13 shots behind McIlory.

“If it’s anywhere near as good as the first one, it will be class” replied Rors.

We salute you, oh unTigerlike king.

Not even a double bogey finish put could a dampener on what was truly one of the most remarkable rounds in US Open history from Rory McIlroy.  Rors had it to record 13 under with one hole to play but his double bogey at the last saw him finish with a 66, 11 under.

Two birdies and an eagle on the way out and three birdies over the last five with only the poor 18th saw McIlroy take this Open by the horns.  By the end of today he may well have the biggest 36 hole lead ever in a US Open, even eclipsing Tiger’s 6 shot lead in 2000.

rory card

rory Rory McIlroy is set to break a whole host of records by the halfway stage of the US Open.  Nobody have ever been better than nine under after two rounds.  Rory is currently at 11 under.

Six shots has been the biggest lead after two rounds; Rors currently leads by eight

Only two people have ever got to 12 under during the US Open, Tiger Woods and Gil Morgan; it now look odds on that Rory will.

An eagle two on the eighth is the highlight of a phenomenal day so far.

rory card

National-Lampoons One week ago Robert Rock had no US visa and no intention of playing in the US Open.  Now the Italian Open winner sits on one under par after round one.

Rock only arrived at Congressional at 3:30 am yesterday after shelling $1000 for a rental car and embarking on a road trip.  US homeland robert rock officials almost blocked Rocky’s visa because of an almost  20 year old driving-under-the-influence charge.  They eventually returned his  passport on Tuesday evening leaving just three hours to get to the airport and on a flight  to Newark .  He then drove to Maryland, exhausted and jetlagged.

Makes the achievement of going under par without US golf experience or a practice round all the more remarkable.

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"Out here, you went out with the mindset of, you know, I know it might sound quite negative, but not to make doubles. You can deal with bogeys out here, but a double is quite hard to take. Anytime I hit it out of position on the tee, on the fairway, I left myself a number, try to leave 10, 15 feet for par and hole it from there. If you're leaving yourself 10, 15 feet for par, it takes double out of play, really." -- Shane Lowry

"Yeah, it was -- well, you kind of think -- you reckon we start out the day at No. 10, but I've been thinking about 10 for three days, knowing that I was off at 7:44 the first day. It didn't help that it was raining. ... It is a tough start, and I'll be happy to not have to do it again." -- Padraig Harrington

Rory McIlroy produced a golfing masterclass at Congressional to storm to the top of the leaderboard at the 2011 US Open.  Rors, armed with a new low to the ground putting stroke, shot a six under par 65 to lead by three from YE Yang.

As McIlroy and co finished their first round, the heavy rain started to fall sparking rumours that tomorrows early starters may get, by far, the best of the softening conditions.

No one ever won a major after one round, but many have lost it.  All four Irish players remain perfectly placed after day one.

henrik Washington police were today trying to identify a mystery player who lies at one under par after the first round of the US Open.

The unknown golfer arrived at Congressional wearing only a pair of boxer shots and calling out for “Fanny”. 

He did not know his name or where he came from.  If you can help identify him please email the USGA at


The Irish early starters put aside their mental problems, their inexperience and the weight of being defending champion to all fare excellently in the first round of the 2011 US Open.  Overnight rain may have softened the greens a little, but they also softened the fairways and the Congressional proved as brutal as expected.

GMac lies T6 after a driving exhibition which produced a 1 under 70. Padraig is just one further back after a level par 71 and first off Shane Lowry, with little experience of US golf proved his class with a 72.

Irish round one 

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US President, Barak Obama last night met with Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson and American Ryder Cup captain Davis Love “eye eye eye” at the White House.

The President spoke with Bubba about his ultra hairy chest as revealed yesterday in the new . Obama then became one of the few people ever to feel Davis Love’s enormous head.  The trio then went outside to the garden where he and Phil Mickelson pelted pinnacles at reporters.

After the meeting, the Presidents official photographer snapped this photo of Obama thanking Phil.

kaymer from noren Alex Noren speaking on his excellent blog “Golfer On The Move” spoke yesterday of his practice round with Germany’s Martin Kaymer who he says is in great form.

“He is a stunning player. Jesus. I was impressed today. I forgot to play my own game. At least I acknowledged it and got back into it. But it was great to play with him to see that this course is not a beast. It's playable.”

10th hole impossible

Players having to start on the 10th hole at Congressional face a “nearly impossible” challenge according to on course reporters who watched the hole being played during practice.

The 200 yard carry to a 14.5 stimp green just 18 paces wide on the left hand side with bunkers and run off set to be a tough ask for players who have already played nine holes but set to be a bogey hole for those who have to play it straight out of the blocks. A large crowd of 2011 US Open Fans gathered last night outside Bethesda General Hospital where inside doctors battled to save Congressional’s Greens.  The Greens were rushed to casualty after players noticed them turning a weird shade of brown.  One green, the 14th, spontaneously combusted after briefly hitting 18 on the stimpmeter.

Surgeons managed to stabilize the greens, but not before a titanic 8 hour theatre battle where 1 million gallons of water were administered by IV.

“To be honest, we’re behind,” said Stan Zontek, the USGA’s agronomist and former Bond villain who has kept a bedside vigil with the ailing Greens.  “I’m not sure we can make up for lost time. We may have to go ahead without Greens”

“We looking at having the players aim at a pin in a patch of dirt with a white circle around around it.  It’s all we can do if the Greens dont make it” added Zontek.

“I think the course is in great shape,” said Dustin Johnson. “It’s a pity there are no greens. But then again at a U.S. Open, they always try to shock us a little.”  More as it emerges.

Well its crunch time and here is my betting slip for the 2011 US Open.  If you have read my post you wont be surprised to see I’ve gone with Hunter Mahan at 23/1.  I just cant get that 62 he shot at Congressional out of my head.

The best odds I could get for KJ Choi, the 2007 winner of the AT&T at Congressional were 34/1.

I’m going with the “players that have a new caddy always do well” theory with Adam Scott who is borrowing Stevie Williams for the week.

Brandt Snedeker won at The Heritage, top tenned twice in US Open’s and has played great at Congressional in the past.

I just think the odds on Sergio at 61/1 and Ernie at 76/1 are just too long.  I will probably lay them on betfair so there’s no real gamble there.

Camilo Villegas is a shock, to even me.  I got a sneaky email that said he had turned his game around somewhat, and the guy was right, he tied third last week; that’s the only reason I’m on board with spiderman.

Alex and Shane are bets purely out of personal interest.  Alex Noren has the best blog of any Tour player, its a great insight into the behind the scenes of a players life.  Shane Lowry is a fellow Irishman and hugely talented player.  Both have massive character and I’ll have my fingers and toes crossed for them!

Reader’s Prize: Golf and Dine in Bantry Bay

Our prize this week is a fourball followed by a meal and drink in Bantry Bay golf club, the best value for money golf course in the South. Check out all Bantry’s special offers on or call 027 50579 for details of special offers.

To enter answer the question below with your name and address to

Question: Where did GMac win his US Open?

Congrats to last weeks winner Ronan Cullinane, Douglas, Cork who wins a My Golf Major exemption from mygolfsociety.

With top Irish PGA pro John Kelly of Harrington Golf and St Margerets. To book a session call John on 086-8155248.

back One of the key shots you will see this week at Congressional is the 200 plus yard long iron. Many amateurs nowadays are afraid to hit long irons and trust hybrids instead. They look at face of, say, a three iron and the lack of loft does not inspire confidence.

Instead of committing to the shot and hitting down onto the ball, many people hang back and try to compensate for the lack of loft by scooping the ball into the air. Two outcomes are likely with this swing, a high weak shot that drifts to the right, or failure to get the ball airborne at all, aptly termed the “scutter”.

To hit a long iron you need to trust the club and sweep the ball of the turf. The key to doing this is good timing and tempo in moving the weight onto the right side during the takeaway and through onto the left side and a full balanced finish. When you have hit the ball, your right toe will be the only point of contact with the ground on that side, with all the weight on a strong straight left leg.

Karl Morris: The Red Dot Major Key

I will be watching this week’s US Open with great interest, but I’ll be especially interested in Louis Oosthuizen. If you remember his win at The Open last year, you might also recall the red dot on his glove, that I was responsible for. Now I know you are asking ‘could a little RED DOT on a golfers glove help him win the ultimate Major’. Well possibly it did and I feel that a seemingly insignificant dot COULD have an impact on YOUR game.
Before we get into that though let me ask you all a question: Did you ever get told to ‘just concentrate’ when you where at school? I am sure that the answer to the above is a resounding YES. It is almost a universal human experience to be told to concentrate or to tell others to concentrate. Yet have any of us ever been told HOW to concentrate, or what concentration actually is? ‘I just lost my concentration on that one!’

Here’s a link to a really excellent shotlink stats feature for every hole at Congressional Country Club from the Washington Post. The data was compiled from the 2007-2009 AT&T National events staged at the venue. You can view a before and after graphic for every hole to see the changes made for the 2011 US Open.  Just cick on the pic of follow the link below.

Steve Williams was busy dusting off his sideburns and sticking them back on for a trip to Washington where he is set to caddy for Australian Adam Scott. Mark Steinberg, Tiger Woods  agent said Williams’s job with Scott doesn’t mean Woods is looking for a new caddie.

“When Adam found out Tiger couldn’t play, Adam called Steve, Steve called Tiger, Tiger called me, I called Adam and Steve called me. Then I got cut off, so Steve called back, but Tiger was already on the line so Adam texted Steve and confirmed the gig via facebook.  As far as I’m concerned, it’s just for the U.S. Open.”

Scott and Williams, 47, completed an 18-hole practice round at Congressional at 5 p.m. Saturday; Scott practised the course and Williams practised staring down spectators and having heavy breathers ejected.  

2011 US Open Betting Preview and Tips: Congressional Country Club

Betting Preview And Tips: Early odds from paddypower

Ernie Els 66/1

Though his form shows absolutely nothing of note since his win at the South African Open back in January you just cannot write off Ernie Els when it comes to a US Open. Els always had that southern hemisphere knack of being able to handle tough course set ups and fast greens. Came third last year at Pebble having missed the cut at Memorial and won the last US Open to be staged at Congressional in 1997. It would be a shock, but then again the US Open is always full of shocks. The biggest shock is his price at 66/1.

Hunter Mahan 22/1

I’ve log been of the opinion that the US Open is the Major most suited to Hunter Mahan. He has played in five, missed the cut last year and finished in the top 20 in every other. His best finish was tied sixth in Bethpage in 2009. When Congressional was on the regular season roster Mahan tied eighth at the 2007 AT&T and narrowly lost out to Tiger in 2009 after a final round 62. Hunter has been in the top 16 in each of his last four events and I believe a top 10 or better is on the cards this week.

Brandt Snedeker 50/1

Brandt Snedeker is having his best ever year on Tour. A fourth in Texas was quickly followed by a playoff win over Luke Donald at The Heritage. After a solid return at the St Jude last week, he returns to an event and a venue that have been kind to him in the past. Snedeker tied eighth in last years US Open to add to his tied ninth at Torrey Pines in 2008. In 2007 he top tenned at the AT&T and tied fifth at Congressional in 2009. Look for odds to finish in the top 10.

Sergio Garcia 50/1

Sergio went 78, 69 last week at the St. Jude to miss his very first cut of the season. Could it be a blessing in disguise for the Spaniard who can now head to Congressional before the rest of the field to get acclimatized? Before last week Garcia had played 11 times, made 11 cuts and had a worst finish of 35th. Without a win since the HSBC Champions in 2009, Congressional could play to his accuracy and long iron strengths whilst masking his weakness on the greens. El Nino has been at the business end of Majors in the past but the wind has always contrived against him.

Luke Donald 10/1

This is less a tip than an infomercial on Luke Donald. Including the Tour Championship at the end of September, Donald has played 15 times, finishing in the top 10 in all but one event. That staggering run of results still didn’t satisfy his knockers who pointed to his lack of wins, another stat Luke but right at Wentworth a couple of weeks back. The Englishman has an abysmal US Open record but with a report card as glowing as the one he has, you just cannot rule him out.

Dustin Johnson 22/1

The record shows that Dustin Johnson tied eighth last year at Pebble Beach, including that horrific final round of 82. That might have broken lesser men but DJ bounced back to win the BMW Championship at Cog Hill later in the year. At six foot four inches Johnson is prodigiously long off the tee, an invaluable asset in this event over any other, his approaches will be shorter than others to Congressional tough new greens. A year older and wiser and coming off improving form with a fourth place finish at The Memorial, you get the feeling this event owes him something.

KJ Choi 28/1

choi KJ Choi has fared well in the past at The Masters, but hasn’t ever really featured in the US Open form book. Until now? The winner of the 2007 AT&T National at Congressional is having a vintage year having already racked up five top 10’s including golf’s “Fifth Major”, winning a playoff against David Toms. They reckon Congressional demands a “special” winner and they don’t come more special than a Korean power lifter turned golfer and all round nice guy.


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