Saturday, December 3, 2011
A third round 67 gave Alvaro Quiros a one shot lead over Peter Hanson at the UBS Hong Kong Open.
Quiros, who on both previous days had shared the lead with Rory McIlroy, carded three birdies in a bogey-free effort which took him to ten under par.
World Number Two McIlroy, however, had to fight back from consecutive bogeys on the front nine to sign for a level par 70, leaving the 22 year old in fifth place and in danger of missing out on the top-two finish he needs to stand a chance of catching Luke Donald in The Race to Dubai.
Ryder Cup star Hanson signed for joint-best-of-the-day 65 to charge firmly into contention, while his score was matched by former US PGA Championship winner Y E Yang, who shares third place with Thailand’s Pariya Junhasavasdikul (67).
Tiger leads at the halfway point of the 2011 Chevron World Challenge. Here are Second Round Highlights.
Friday, December 2, 2011
Rickie Fowler, a Titleist club staffer since he began on Tour is now a racing certainty to make a change to Cobra next year. An announcement is imminent after the news has filtered through golf forums worldwide.
Titleist and Cobra were once under the same Acushnet umbrella but are now two separate companies. Cobras 2012 clubs feature the AMP (Advanced Material Placement) line of woods which feature Fowler’s trademark orange flash and grips. The AMP woods are due out on Feb 10th 2012 and are designed for the better player.
We hope to bring you the full updated Rickie Fowler Cobra what’s in the bag as sson as it becomes official.
It’s like the final day of the Premiership season with as many eyes on the relegation battle as on the top. It’s not quite relegation on the cards for Peter Lawrie and Stephen Gallacher, more the chance to earn some serious bucks at next week’s Jumeirah Golf Estates where $7.5m is on offer.
With only 60 players in the field and €17,000 odd between them on each side of the cut off point, it’s all to play for in Hong Kong. Lawrie, in 60th and with an automatic qualifying spot as it stands cemented his advantage in Asia this morning after a second successive 69 today while Gallacher’s two over par 72 saw him just scrape under the cut line by one.
As it stands now, the Dubliner is all but guaranteed his spot in Dubai having made the cut. He’ll most likely overtake Scott Jamieson and Christian Nilsson on Sunday evening and punch his ticket to Dubai.
Gallacher on the other hand has 36 holes to break the half million mark and join the Irishman at the end of rainbow.
The pair are one ahead of Thai Panupol Pittayarat and Scot Richie Ramsay with Miguel Angel Jimenez one shot further back.
2011 UBS Hong Kong Open Second Round Highlights
2011 UBS Hong Kong Open First Round Highlights
Click below to watch day one highlights on the European Tour site. Opens in a new window.
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Charl Schwartzel got angry and got more than even as he scorched through the back nine to claim a share of the first-round lead in the Nedbank Golf Challenge at the Gary Player Country Club at Sun City on Thursday.
The South African was one-over-par midway through the round after a double-bogey at the ninth, his third shot finding the water. But his troubles ended there as he blazed through the back nine in just 31 shots, picking up five birdies to finish with a four-under-par 68.
I had a word with Dustin Johnson as far back as 12 months ago about this. It was in Adare Manor at the JP thing. Ronan Flood had just left me in charge of PodRig’s bag for a few minutes while he went off for a toe rub or manicure or something. There I was as proud as punch having a sneaky rummage through the side pockets (Ro you need to empty the banana skins out of there mate, they’re rancid) when up rocks Dustin Johnson.
We chatted. Or rather I chatted, he was just kindof standing beside me. I know he could hear me though and that’s all that matters here. I said to him (or in his general direction), "Dusty mate, those one step dunks might look great for the cameras on Inside the PGA Tour but you’re not a basketballer, you’re a golfer. If the world wanted to watch NBA stars play golf, then why was the Haney Project with Charles Barkley such a shocking failure? Listen to me DJ, the Doc says you keep one step dunking and you are going to wreck your knee”. Totally in denial, Dustin said something like “Hey there little baldy buddy, did you enjoy the golf today, you want my autograph?”
Pic: Barkley reminisces on his Tiger friendship days.
Did he take my advice? Did the big man listen? Read the headlines. Dustin Johnson is today recovering in hospital from knee surgery and is expected to be out of Tour golf for six weeks. Get well soon man, and hey, next time the cameras start rolling just stick to the John Wayne glare thing.
Rory McIlroy gave Ireland a double boost by firstly announcing that would definitely play in next years Irish Open then taking the clubhouse lead on six under par during the first round of the UBS Hong Kong Open. In tough and windy conditions Rors made four birdies on his back nine on his way to a 64. After struggling on the practice range, Rory told reporters he found his concentration as soon as he hit the golf course. "Six birdies and no bogeys is always a nice way to start the tournament.
Fellow Northern Irishman Gareth Maybin is also starting well in his bid to retain his card and avoid a trip to Q School in two weeks. He was 4 under after 15.
Hot on McIlroy’s heels is the Spanish pair of Miguel Angel Jimenez and Alvaro Quiros.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
2 of 4: Spiderman 4 axed. Harrington blamed.
3 of 4: Discovery Channel documentary on Nativity reveals identities of the The Three Wise Men.
4 of 4: Bad Santa!
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Here’s John Chisholm from Muskerry Golf Club with his brand spanking new GolfBuddy GPS that he won on GolfCentralDaily. He reckons he going to be pretty much impossible to beat with all this extra GPS technology behind him and is now actively campaigning in his club to have the yardage markers removed.
For more info on bagging yourself a GolfBuddy GPS for Christmas check out http://www.gpsgolfbuddy.eu/
We salute you John Chisholm!
Golfbidder GiftsIf you’re looking for any kind of golf club new or used then www.golfbidder.com is THE place to find it. Aswell as having Europe’s biggest collection of used clubs as knockdown prices Golfbidder have loads of excellent smaller gift ideas like Range Finders, Bags, Training Aids and more. Golfbidder have a nominal postage charge all over Europe so you really cant go wrong!
It’s the hottest thing to hit the golf world in ages and set to become mega in 2012. During coverage of golf on The Golf Channel you may have noticed the way they can now superimpose a blue line on the screen showing the exact line of any putt? That’s done using Aimpoint and now anybody can learn the science behind green reading and how to figure the exact break of every putt. Qualified instructors with clinics in Ireland include Andrew Norrby +44 7740973180 (Northern Ireland) and Donal Scott (Southern Ireland) and you can log on to www.aimpointgolf.co.uk for loads more info. A list of clinics for Ireland and the UK is available on www.aimpointgolf.co.uk/clinics.
To see all the gift ideas click here
Forget your Sabbatinis or your Montys, your Sergio tantrums or your Spencer Levin goes berserk. It looks like the golf world has a new bad guy, or rather an old bad guy who’s been round a long time but we kindof forgot about.
It’s probably fair to say Robert Allenby has had his “bell-end” incidents over the years that haven’t exactly endeared him to the golfing public. He is well known for being like the Shawshank prison warden to several caddies over the years with one, Matthew "Bussy" Tritton even walking off the course on him in the BMW Championship in 2007.
Now it seems in the run up to Christmas old Grinch Allenby is falling foul of his fellow pros too, after being cheered OUT of the Greg Chalmers victory party on Sunday when he threatened Geoff Ogilvy with a broken glass and ordered him outside for a fight. Their argument stems from the President’s Cup where Allenby blamed everybody but himself for his own poor performance.
In interviews Allenby blamed Retief Goosen for missing several putts after "I hit it inside 10 feet" during their foursomes match and then said Y.E. Yang made him feel like he was “playing alone” in their fourball. He then dragged his ‘friend’ Geoff Ogilvy into the rant saying he "hit me in the tree three times off the tee and I had to chip out three times" when they were paired in foursomes.
When Allenby was then closing in on leader Greg Chalmers at the Aussie PGA on Sunday, Ogilvy sent out a seemingly sarcastic tweet that said "Nice to see Robert playing so well this week!"
Needless to say Grinch Allenby’s mood wasn’t made any better when he lost the playoff to Greg Chalmers blaming a spectator for his failure. And when he came into the winner’s party at 9pm that night Allenby went straight over to tackle Ogilvy.
Allenby broke a wine glass and shouted “do you want to go?”, stunning the entire room into silence. Ogilvy stood up and tried to calm things but then demanded an apology which let’s say wasn’t forthcoming from frothing Allenby and he again challenged the younger man outside for fisticuffs and some broken glass face gouging.
In the end Allenby stormed out of the room to loud cheers as Ogilvy sat back as the victor. The Grinch has been defeated for now, but he will be back at the JBWere Masters and he’s not a happy monster.
This year the SPOTY winner will be decided by a public vote to take place during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year show on Thursday, 22nd December. Lines will open at 8pm with voting numbers given out only on the night. It is thought this change in voting is designed to make it fairer after the huge amount of electioneering that went into last years campaign when jockey Tony McCoy scooped the top award.
McIlory and Clarke will face tough opposition if they are to scoop the award with Andy Murray, Amir Khan and Mark Cavendish considered by many as this years favourites. No women have made the shortlist.
The 2011 BBC Sports Personality of the Year award shortlist chosen by UK Sports editors (in alphabetical order) is: Mark Cavendish (cycling), Darren Clarke (golf), Alastair Cook (cricket), Luke Donald (golf), Mo Farah (athletics), Dai Greene (athletics), Amir Khan (boxing), Rory McIlroy (golf), Andy Murray (tennis), Andrew Strauss (cricket).
The show will be held at MediaCityUK, Salford.
How To Vote For Darren Clarke and Rory McIlroy For 2011 BBC Sports Personality Of The Year
Monday, November 28, 2011
Hong Kong GC, Fanling, Hong Kong 01 Dec 2011 - 04 Dec 2011
Rory McIlroy 5/1If there's one man that's coming to Hong Kong determined to win this week it is Rors. And Tiger like odds of 5/1 show the bookies are afraid of their lives too with former course favourites like GMac, Dyson and Francesco Molinari not playing. With seconds in 2008 and 2009 and sixth last season, the big question is will Rory's putter cooperate to fulfil his Hong Kong destiny? The season has been Mega for McIlroy with 11 top tens including the US Open win but you can’t help but wonder how many more titles he could have bagged if the crucial putts had dropped.
Gregory Bourdy 40/1Returned to form with a top 10 at the Iskander Johor Open recently and is this week returning to the site of his win in 2009. Tied 11th when defending last year. Bourdy has come close twice this season in Kuala Lumpur and Wales but it seems that late in the season is when his form is best. Two of his three wins on the European Tour have been in October and November.
Miguel Angel Jimenez 32/1Three wins last year, but alas nothing yet for Miguel Angel Jimenez in 2011. But before you go feeling too sorry for the genial Spaniard, let's remember his three seconds in 2011 at the Volvo Golf Champions, Ballantine's and just recently at the Andalucia Masters. Twice a winner at Fanling in the 2005 and 2008 seasons and to be written off at your peril. Can Miguel keep the best wine for last?!
Thongchai Jaidee 60/1You just cant have a Hong Kong Open without everybody's favourite Thai paratrooper Thongchai Jaidee. Okay he hasn't had a top 10 on Tour this year and nobody really considers him a threat this week but I've been following his progress since Portugal and been pleasantly surprised to see that he's been in the top 30 in five of his last six starts. Jaidee just loves Hong Kong, he's not been outside the top 20 here in years and has a best of tied second when Jimenez last won.
Best of the RestJustin Rose 9/1 and Ian Poulter 12/1 teamed up for England last week at Mission Hills and after a stunning final round there, both will fancy their chances this week. Poults is defending champion having nearly produced a 59 in the second round last year. He'll be looking for a good end to a strange season which produced another matchplay win, but only one top 10 besides. Rose on the other hand has top 10's in his last two starts in China and Singapore to go with his playoff win at the BMW Championship and looks very dangerous.
Here’s what’s in the bag of Spaniard Sergio Garcia as he heads into the 2012 season renewed, reinvigorated and back in love with the game.
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There were rumours that the TaylorMade 2012 driver was going to be called RocketBallZ but after it proved a bit too “testicular” in market research it was apparently abandoned. However good sources around the interweb suggest that this is the shape of things to come from TaylorMade in 2012.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
Greg Chalmers made it two big wins from two by winning the Australian PGA Championship after a playoff. The left-hander won the Australian Open in Sydney two weeks ago and beat Marcus Fraser and Robert Allenby in the playoff.
Allenby had a fearsome playoff record but lost his concentration when a spectator with a camera put him off before a shot and when Marcus Fraser found a pond, a par was good enough for Chalmers to claim the win.
The 56th Omega Mission Hills World Cup of Golf has just seen a smash and grab raid by Team USA Matt Kuchar and Gary Woodland. They shot a foursomes 67 to end on 24 under as Ireland and Germany watched down the fairway.
A good putt for par on the last from Alex Cejka on the last saw Germany secure a tie for second with England who were men of the day with Rose and Poults ripping out a 63. Ireland finished tied for fourth on 22 under after a 72.
It’s the 24 win by team USA but the first since 2000. Gary Woodland was unanimously crowned in the press room as the player of the tournament.