December 2011

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 Robert_Karrlson-9747Adams golf (aren’t they for sale?) today announced they have signed Robert Karlsson.  However the deal could yet turn sour if Karlsson cannot find a set of Adams club before the start of his season.  As of yesterday he had clocked up over 1,200 miles in search of a Swedish pro shop that stocks Adams clubs, which are currently not available in Sweden. It is thought the search may spread to other Scandinavian countries aswell as eBay in the coming days.

There was however some success for the two time Ryder Cupper yesterday when he managed to buy an Adams hat from a farmer near Stockholm.

“We think Robert is a  great fit for Adams golf” said Chip Fryer, CEO of Adams. “We now have a really tall guy to go with the old guy, the religious guy and the crazy two gloves guy.”

sony logo Sony Open in Hawaii Betting Preview and Tips, Thursday Jan 12 – Sunday Jan 15, 2012, Waialae CC · Honolulu, Hawaii
Odds on exchanges

Winner Alright

Last week we tipped 1st Steve Stricker, 2nd Martin Laird, T3rd Webb Simpson.
Also check out my

Steve Stricker 8/1

stricker After winning last week Stricks may well be untouchable in the betting ring this week as he has also performed well on this track in the past. Top tenned in four of his last five visits to Waialae Country Club, the best of which was in coming third in 2010 behind Ryan Palmer. It remains to be seen if the press commitments and inevitable tiredness after winning will be a factor, but for me Stricker just keeps on keepin’on.
 

Rory Sabbatini 30/1

rory sabbatini funny pic[5] Nobody wants to love old Sabbo anymore so I better give him some. The Honda Classic winner kindof hinted at turning over a new leaf after with young ball spotters and Sean O’Hair enjoying the new Sabbatini. The South African can play a bit and after a top 10 tune up last week will attempt to emulate his best of second here in 2008 and 2006.

KJ Choi 15/1

choi[3] Last season was somewhat of a breakthrough for KJ with eight top 10’s including the Players Championship crown saw him back to his very best. A brilliant 65 Monday at the Tournament of Champions elevated the Korean to tied fifth in the final standings and is sure to have him fired up for this week. He won here in 2008 and is flashing code red and yellow on my screens!

Zach Johnson 15/1

zach Will 2012 be the year of the Zach attack? Well if he continues holing out second shots like at the Chevron World Challenge it just might! Johnson won here in 2008 and possesses the game required for Waialae. The course is nothing like last week, with a premium on accuracy off the tee, shot making in the wind and quality putting. Expect Zach’s choppy follow through to work wonders here.

Best Of The Rest

Sonya-Toms-David-Toms David Toms (30/1) had a terrible week at the Hyundai but won here in 2006 and tied second in 2009. In theory he has the taylor made game for this course; accurate off the tee, good greens in reg and a solid putter. Theory and practice are two different things however and lets hope he can shrug off last weeks cobwebs and contend.
I know some of you love to have a long odds winner and sure don’t we all. If you want to stick a small flutter on a really long odds shot this week, consider Brian Gay (approx 100/1) who played well here last year and has a best of tied fifth in 2009.
marino headcover[6] There’s also one of my favourite players Steve Marino (35/1). He played great here last year and at the Arnold Palmer. There’s no doubting he’s supremely talented but is as unpredictable as an Alex Ferguson press conference.


 ron flash The Sunshine Tour was rocked yesterday when it’s newest champion Louis Oosthuizen was arrested on suspicion of stealing a child’s bicycle near East London, South Africa. A quick thinking mother snapped a picture of Oosthuizen making his getaway on the bike and promptly reported it to  police.
Rumours had abounded about Oosthuizen’s cleptomaniacal tendencies since a children’s car seat went missing from the player’s car park at Royal St Georges in 2011 and one matching that description was subsequently spotted restraining a small sheep (lamb) on the South African’s farm in South Africa.  louis bike
The owner of the children’s bike Mornay Kobus Kruger Stayne (4) was said to be distraught over the incident having only received the bicycle as a present from Santa (his parents) on December 25th last.
Pic: Oosthuizen’s grin’s menacingly as he makes his getaway.
"Louis always seemed like the sweetest man," said Tour boss George O’Grady following the arrest. "He looks just like Shrek, but who could have believed he would turn about to be a different kind of Ogre?"
A follow up search of Oosthuizen’s home in the wake of the arrest, revealed seven further stolen bicycles, two car seats, a small drum, a plastic spade and a packet of Match Attax trading cards.  The case is due before the courts in February.

An in-depth interview with Irish professional and Ryder Cup hero Paul McGinley.  McGinley gives his honest opinion on Tiger Woods about 35 minutes in.  You have to admire Paul’s honesty on how he and most of the other players view and interact with Tiger Woods.  There’s also some great insights into the pro life with a great set of questions from Shaun Doherty on Highland Radio. I especially liked “How do you (pros) stop yourself becoming a spoiled brat?”

paul mcginley radio interview, shaun doherty highland radio, tiger woods, ryder cup

"Not being in the mix this weekend makes me miss the game that much more!! #KNEEhab is in the rearview mirror," is the message coming from Dustin Johnson as he confirmed he is on the mend after arthroscopic knee Surgery.

Though affected since last July, Johnson had the surgery scheduled for late November to repair damaged cartilage in his right knee brought on by the extreme forces generated in golf swing. The procedure involved small incisions in the skin through which a small “arthroscope” guided by a lighted scope attached to a television monitor was inserted and used to repair the cartilage.

Johnson spent a week on crutches after the surgery before beginning that ‘kneehab’ over the Christmas period.  He is scheduled back at the Farmer’s Insurance Open one week before the At&T at Torrey Pines, a place which holds for DJ the very best and worst of memories!

2012 Joburg Open
Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club, Johannesburg, South Africa 12 Jan 2012 - 15 Jan 2012
Early odds on the exchanges

Winner Alright

Last week we tipped Louis Oosthuizen at 5/1 (Winner) and Jaco Van Zyl at 16/1 (fourth)

Charl Schwartzel 5/1

Charl Schwartzel Funny Pic[5] Swap one superstar for another this week as Louis takes a rest and lets Masters Champion Charl Schwartzel take the limelight. Untouchable in winning here for the last two years running, by four shots in 2011 and by six in 2010. With top fives in the WGC-HSBC and the Dubai World Championship, his last events of 2011, it’s hard to see past the threepeat.

Tjaart Van Der Walt 44/1

tjaart His second place cheque of €115,000 sees 37 year old Tjaart already almost surpass his Tour earnings from last year and there may just be something inspiring from seeing yourself second on the 2012 Race To Dubai that will see another strong performance this week on a course where 20 under is a realistic target. Held his nerve impressively for the most part last week and I can see Van der Walt improving on his tied seventh here last year.

Danny Willett 30/1

willett Being a co sanctioned event with the Sunshine Tour, the leaderboard is dominated by South African names but a traditional fast starter in this part of the world is Englishman Danny Willett. Dan has improved his result in each of his last four events culminating in a seventh last week. He still searches however for that elusive stress free final round where everything goes right and he will know that his Sunday 73 last week opened the gap to let several players past him on the run to the line. Fingers cross so that it happens this week on a course where Willett tied fourth in both 2010 and 2009.

Garth Mulroy 18/1

mulroy.625 Another man who seems to have the measure of the Royal Johannesburg golf course is Garth Mulroy who finished second behind Schwartzel last year and also tied second back in 2008. Recovered after an ill fated four tournament trip to the PGA Tour last year to win the Alfred Dunhill Championship in late November and also score a top 10 in the South African Open. After a tune up last week Garth will be worth watching come the cut Friday evening.

Best Of The Rest

Branden-Grace-Melbourne_2383671 I was very impressed with the strength of character shown by Branden Grace (46/1) last week. He could have let his shoulders drop after carding a first round 77 but instead turned it around by shooting a super 63. In the end he tied 14th and this week with a clean slate has the talent to come into a place. Another man strong in talent but weak in his lower vertebrae is Richard Sterne (23/1). He won here in 2008 and finished sixth last week. If his chronic back problem can be controlled there’s no doubt that he can add to his five European Tour titles. This week will be Jaco Van Zyl’s 66th on Tour and he’s increasingly at home high on the leaderboard. Made money for us last week with a great fourth place finish to go with his tied third at the Alfred Dunhill Championship. He’s 18/1 on the exchanges and good value for it.

Helpful Tournament Top-10 History

Less than two years into their marriage, Chadlene Campbell twin sister of PGA Tour golfer Chad Campbell, has announced she is filing for divorce. Chadlene married elite US marine Woody Beanpole following a whirlwind romance in  2010 after the couple met at a Paris fashion show where Campbell was starring.

The couple, pictured here on their wedding day, insist they remain good friends. “Chadlene is more of a man than I could ever be” said Woody adding “her commitments to the world of top modelling have made it impossible for us to be together. You could say her looks that brought us together are now driving us apart.”

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from the European Tour site.

oosthuizen-africa-openLouis Oosthuizen and Tjaart van der Walt both birdied the last to share the lead after a fascinating third round of the Africa Open.
Defending champion Oosthuizen began the day with a two shot lead, but with favourable scoring conditions once again prevalent at East London Golf Club, the former Open Champion was soon caught.
The 28 year old actually birdied his first three holes, but his lead was halved when van der Walt matched that feat and then went one better at the next.

kim jong oon funny PYONGYANG, NORTH KOREA—In his first major move following his father's death, Kim Jong-un, has defied the North Korean army by insisting on styling himself on PGA Champions Tour player Kenny Perry.  The young dictator, has fuelled speculation that he may not in fact be bonkers enough to run North Korea as badly as his father by deciding to break with the long tradition of looking like Tom Kite.

“Thlis has clome as a huge disglace and dishonour” said Tom Kite. 

Kim Jong-un told the state run news agency that while he loves golf as much as his late father and recently shot a round of 41 including 12 holes in one with a borrowed set of ladies graphite shafted irons with slippy grips, he just thought he needed to style himself on someone more colourful.  “I just haven’t got Tom Kite’s puppet lips”, he said “but Kenny Perry I can do”.

Kim-Jong-Il-Team-America “It’s vitally important for me to look absolutely crazy like my dear old Dad” he continued “and while Tom Kite was indeed a wacky looking chap, I needed someone more youthful that today’s generation can relate to, but still gives the impression of being not all there.  That blank vacant stare that Kenny has is something I’m working very hard on. I said “hard on” get it huh huh. Dont print that or you die.”

Phenomenally funny viral website GolfCentralDaily.com has made a sensational bid to replace FTI as Padraig Harrington’s chief sponsor after the business advisory company confirmed they would not be renewing the three time major champion’s deal.  GCD boss Donal “Doc” Hughes (not a real doctor) launched a bid said to be in the region of $10 million over five years but does not involve actual money.  It’s believed that Doc is willing to hand over his five year old son as part of the deal.

Pic: Padraig tries on his new hat with Donal. The first embroidery run did not go so well.

“He’s a good young lad with a sweet right foot. He’s from good stock too, I can assure you of that. His mother was a trained sniper from Monaghan.  Padraig could mould  this lad into a fine footballer, Ajax scouts have already been over to have a look at him,” Hughes said earlier today from his ranch in Mayo. He added “the young lad is also very handy if you ever need boxes to be put into the attic. Rather than risk one of his own kids, Podge can just sit my fella up there pass up the boxes and let him work. He has a gift for it, never bangs his head off the rafters or anything.”

GolfCentralDaily say negotiations are at an advanced level with Harrington’s management company IMG.  Hughes said “I’m friends with his brother Tadhg on facebook and I’ve sent  IMG a connection request on Linkedin outlining my terms, so it’s pretty much a done deal.”

irresponsible headline The GolfChannel  was today under fire after the normal headline writer guy went on vacation and was replaced was an 18 year old Scandinavian hating Tiger Woods fanatic.  The intern went straight to work making Elin Nordegrin (best approximation of her name) appear to be some kind of  “crazed lunatic she devil”. 

The certified sane six iron swinging Swede was simply knocking to the ground a $12.3 million 17,000-square-foot mansion in Palm Beach in order to do some restoration work.

According to The Golf Channel spokesperson Kelly Tilghman, “The sensationalist headline is currently being corrected. Any offence to Elin Nordegren or Tiger Woods was unintended.  Needless to say the headline writer has been taken down a back alley and lynched.”

I just got my B&B booked for the 2012 Irish Open at Portrush and time of writing, there are still loads of rooms.  The B&B is called Beulah House and is literally 5 mins walk from the golf course.  The rate is a very reasonable £32.50 per person per night for bed and breakfast and the owner’s name is Rachel.  Parking for guests is guaranteed at the rear of the house.  Contact number is 00-44-28 70822413 and website is http://www.beulahguesthouse.com/ 

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DARREN_CLARKE_000 But a shot in the head for Leo Varadkar. Could this be the Minister for Tourism and Sport’s  worst decision yet?  The 2012 Irish Open is heading across the border to Royal Portrush and a while privately the Irish Government will be glad of not having to shell out supplementary sponsorship funding as in previous years, they may very soon rue their decision.

Leo and co seem to be oblivious of the millions in tax revenue from tickets, tourists, sponsors, food and beer posted in by venues like Killarney over the past two stagings, easily swamping whatever money the Irish government had been investing to prop the tournament up. The Stormont Executive has said it would provide "substantial financial backing" for the event, but is privately set to teach their Southern counterparts a lesson in how to put on a show and make money doing it.

The 2012 Irish Open is sure to be reinvigorated by its move to Royal Portrush.  Aswell as the lure of the three local major champions in Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell and Darren Clarke will come the massive and knowledgeable Northern crowds keen to see an event played on a classic links layout.  The Open Championship was played at Portrush in 1930, 1936 and 1951 and will celebrate its 125th birthday in 2013.

RoyalPortrush1 Tom Cotter may very well have been right when he hinted the 2012 Irish Open would not be at Carton House but few had figured on Royal Portrush, which now looks highly likely to stage the event this year.
A press conference with the European Tour is to be held there tomorrow afternoon. Portrush staged the 1951 Open, the only time it was held outside England or Scotland  and is closely linked with Darren Clarke and GMac whith Rory McIlory also a big fan. More as it emerges.

Just three months after being attacked by a flying wiener on the golf course in California, Tiger Woods has revealed his new four man security team for the 2012 season.  The four were plucked from the football team of his old alma mater Stanford College, who incidentally play and look like wieners themselves.

A statement from Woods management company said “As we all know golf is a dangerous sport with fans that can become very aggressive.  Sometimes even, the little blue rope around the course is not strong enough, and one gets through.  After suffering a near fatal “airborne hotdog” towards the end of last season, Tiger has enlisted some help to beef up his own security.”

The Stanford linebackers have been instructed to seek out and destroy any mouthy spectators, all cameramen, photographers, Jimmy Roberts, Stevie Williams, Adam Scott, Charles Barkely and Hank Haney.

Combined, Tigers four new bodyguards add up to  a whopping 95.

Sky News Sky News With Dermot Murnaghan 05-31 10-26-40 Sarah Stirk is to become the new Sky Sports TV PGA Golf anchor stepping into the heels of Di Dougherty who left at the end of last year.  Regular panellist and Italian stallion Denis Pugh had to be restrained, such was his excitement, on hearing the news.  Sky sources revealed a defibrillator is being fitted in the Sky PGA Tour studios, as a precautionary measure this season to protect the over enthusiastic Molinari brothers coach from a coronary after reports that he has been “jumping up and down like a puppy at feeding time” since hearing the news. Stirk is to make the journey of 15 metres down the corridor from the Murnaghan studios at Sky.

<VLUU L830  / Samsung L830> A senior Sky Sports executive said, “Of course we could have taken the easy option and stuck another gorgeous full figured blonde in the presenter’s chair after Di Dougherty left, but we feel David Livingstone’s schedule is already packed with his European Tour commitments.  We’ve gone for Sarah Stirk instead because of her knowledge of the game. She may not have Livingstone’s looks, but that’s something we will just have to deal with.  You could say we’ve brought in the SS to bring a bit of discipline to the prisoners Pugh, Holmes and Hawksworth.  Sarah is already showing great promise with her ability to give a sneaky smiley glance into the camera whilst listening like only Sky anchors can do.”

Pic: Born Survivor- Stirk Makes It Through Interview with Vijay Singh in 2008 

One of those left most disappointed with the decision was regular anchor Robert Lee, who bosses revealed was deemed ‘too sexy’ for the position. The Sky executive said “We all know Robert comes to life after dark, and he’s damn sexy, but we cannot risk losing valuable viewers from our sister stations such as “TVX” and “Red Hot Over 40 Presenters” by putting Rob up against them on late night TV.”

Sarah Stirk is a former Setanta Golf presenter on their ill fated PGA Tour coverage and is no stranger to working with celebrities having shared a studio in the past with luminaries such as Ronan Rafferty.  According to urban legend, during her time with Setanta, Stirk was able to identify a staggering 37 PGA Tour players using only their photographs, beating the previous record of 33 for a panellist set by Peter Oosterhuis.

Pic: Leaving the glamorous world of showing off caddy cars to 118 viewers

Direct Golf TV for whom Stirk has been working of late are said to be inconsolable at the news.  Their CEO said “Our Sarah Stirk motocaddy review had 118 views, we’re going to miss her so much.  By the way, you wouldn’t happen to have Diana Dougherty’s mobile number?”

shotlink2 According to shotlink statistics a record 68.3% of PGA Tour professionals had sexual intercourse over the Christmas period.  Of that percentage shotlink recorded  63% as having scored with women, 3% with men and 2.3% with animals and dolls.  A further 10.4% of Tour pro’s got within one foot of the hole in regulation but failed to convert from close range.

Pic: No rest. Shotlink statisticians hard at it over the Christmas period

“The main purpose of ShotLink is to gather pertinent data information with regards to the players, like getting yardages, stats and sexual habits that we can archive and have for future years,” said Jack White, director of ShotLink for the PGA TOUR. “The side benefits are that it also makes for cheap toilet humour blog posts by twisted bloggers in Ireland.”

Other interesting shotlink stats from the Christmas Season

  • Over 20% of the field were recorded as have knocked more than one out on the practice ground.
  • 5% of the field were disqualified for playing with headcovers still on.
  • 0.8% could not be considered as part of the shotlink stats as they were deemed to be playing the wrong hole.

merkel funny German chancellor Angela Merkel has sensationally banned the Africa Open just one day before it is due to begin as part of the 2012 European Tour season.  According to a spokesperson for the German government, meddling Merkel noticed the Africa Open after mistakenly stumbling across the European Tour website whilst looking for women’s business suits.

Frau Merkel immediately issued a statement which read “With the current stagnation of the Eurozone and the massive financial crisis on our hands, there’s just no way we can invite Africa to be part of Europe.  If you think we are broke, you haven’t seen the half of it, they haven’t got a red cent.  George O’Grady had no right inviting Africa into Europe. I’ve spoken to him earlier today and he’ll just have to go back and tell Africa he’s sorry but they cant play with us.”

2012 Africa Open Betting Preview and Tips

Africa Open,  East London GC, East London, South Africa 05 Jan 2012 - 08 Jan 2012

Louis Oosthuizen 5/1

Louis-Oosthuizen-r_1680480c Far and away the favourite for this season opener, the bookies have Shrek at 5/1 to defend the title he won in a three way playoff last season. And who could doubt him with six top tens in his last seven events in 2011. Even more amazing is that Louis compiled those far far away lands such as Scotland, Georgia, Malaysia, China and the Emirates! Back on home turf this week it’s hard to see past the ogre in his home swamp.

Jaco Van Zyl 16/1

  jacoJaco tied fourth last year in a group alongside Charl Schwartzel and finished 2011 very smartly on the European Tour. It all started after a dismal run leading up to the Nordea Masters which was played in terrible conditions. After finishing 13th there Jaco went on to finish in the top 25 in all but one of the next nine events with highlights including tying third in Crans sur Sierre and the Alfred Dunhill Championship.

Jbe Kruger 20/1

krugerI felt sorry for Jbe at the Alfred Dunhill Championship when, following rounds of 64 and 67, he let head drop and could only add a pair of 73’s to eventually tie for ninth. That might have affected his performance in the South African Open the following week where he finished 25th. Has done well at East London in the past tying eighth last year and finished third in 2010. Deserving of a good result.

Best of the Rest

andy George Coetzee is only 14/1 with the bookies, an indication of how highly he is regarded after only 59 events on the European Tour. Not sure how much young George indulged over the Christmas but this guy is so talented he’s sure to be value for money. Looking for value further down the field I come to Steven O’Hara at 66/1. Now there’s a man that finished like a train last year with a 66 to shoot into a tie for fourth. The Scot is also coming off a super performance at Q-School so there is a bit of value there. Finally how about rookie Andy Sullivan pencilled in at 150/1. After the Walker Cupper breezed through Q School in Catalunya last month in third, he’s sure to be psyched for the first event of the season. Personally I think those odds are daft, but it all remains to be seen.
Fivers in the back pocket and off we go!

News just in from Sam Elder of PING who today officially unveiled the i20™ driver, fairway woods, hybrids, and irons.
Here’s all the techno details and specs.
i20 driver_beauty_1
Relying on innovation and custom engineering to ensure that every design attribute helps to optimise performance, right down to the colour of the clubs’ finish.
“In the i20 series, we’ve combined workability, distance and forgiveness with the goal to make any golfer a more versatile and complete player,” said John A. Solheim, PING Chairman & CEO. “We’ve engineered the i20s with a solid feel and generous forgiveness but also a degree of workability for the player who wants full command of the clubface for controlling trajectory and shot shape. Anyone who is passionate about their game is going to be very confident and capable with this game-improvement technology.”
The matt-black finish of the driver, woods, and hybrids is more than eye-catching, Solheim emphasised -- there’s a real performance benefit. “The non-glare finish absorbs light, allowing the player to focus without distraction,” he said. “Our tour pros are very enthusiastic about the finish – but even more so about the i20s’ performance. Players are able to execute any shot they want with confidence.” The 460cc driver head is highly aerodynamic to reduce drag, which generates clubhead speed and ball velocity for maximising distance. “The i20 driver is incredibly long but also highly accurate,” Solheim said. “We gave the fairway woods and hybrids the same matt finish, and their designs offer the high-launching forgiveness that makes them reliable from all turf conditions and from the tee.”
In the multi-metal irons, a progressive set design features long irons that are slightly larger, high launching and more forgiving. The smaller short irons feature less offset and provide exceptional control. Distance control, a key to consistent iron play, was a priority in the irons’ design, Solheim said. “The stabilising bars and the thicker face offer great feel and ensure that golfers can hit to precise yardages. Distance control is an absolute must for better players, but precision is going to help anyone lower their scores.” 
To emphasise the importance of a proper fit with any i20 product, PING offers two stock shaft options. In the driver, fairways, and hybrids, golfers can choose PING’s TFC 707 series, or the Project X Black from True Temper. “Both shafts deliver a solid, stable feel and consistent performance,” Solheim said. “Our TFC series is slightly heavier, stiffer and generates lower launch and less spin than Project X Black.” In the irons, PING’s CFS (Control, Feel and Stability) shaft and the TFC 169i are available. 
New product descriptions and technical specifications:

You want Woods versus McIlroy?  Picture the scenario. James Bond sitting opposite Largo in “Never Say Never Again”. Between them is the game – Domination where you must learn fast and mistakes are rewarded with the equivalent magnitude of electric shock. Just when it all seems to be over, a broken Bond insides half fried, suggests to Largo “one more game for the rest of the world?”

nsna_domination So here it is folks. Mark the date in your calender, because January 26th is the date when the truth will finally out. Let the battle for world domination begin.

There are no excuses anymore. Tiger Woods has zipped up his flies, fixed up his knees and tightened up his swing.  In his absence Rory McIlroy has done a Tim Tebow on it and stepped into the breach and won over the crowds. Like the Bronco’s QB, McIlroy has stumbled on occasion but always managed to find a way to get back up and be a winner.

Now the two will meet, fully fit and ready to see just who is the best.  Of course there will be many other great players at the Abu Dhabi Championship, Luke Donald and defending champion Martin Kaymer but for now let’s pretend they’re just extras.

So they say the world of golf “needs” Tiger Woods.  But do they mean the world of golf “loves” Tiger or is it really more a case of the world “grudgingly admiring his ability”?  Tiger is the greatest player of our generation, of that there is no doubt, but there’s also no doubt that he doesn’t have the same public appeal as a Nicklaus or Palmer, the greatest players of the last generation.

They wanted to give an asterix to Padraig Harrington when he won Major’s without Tiger, yet there was no mention of the irritating little star, asterix I mean, when Charl, Rory, Darren and Keegan mopped up the big trophies last season.

Asterix’s to one side for a moment and Woods kicked off the season by turning over a new leaf and inviting the press to his house and giving a full and frank fireside interview to one and all where he laughed and joked and recalled locker room stories from famous victories.  Did he heck!  He issued a friggin’ email that reads like a sleeping tablet.

“The lowest moments (last year) came from the fact that I wasn’t healthy and couldn’t put in the time on and off the course that I wanted and needed to, and that was frustrating,” Woods typed. “I was playing with pain and that isn’t fun. The last couple of months have been really fun and that is mostly because I am feeling healthy again and building week on week.”

Holy smokes Batman, for a man that talks about having “fun” all the time, he doesn’t ever seem to be having any of it.

When Tiger gets back, for me it will be like those films where the the cryogenically frozen hero is thawed out sometime in the future.  The golf world however has not waited for Woods’ while he has been in status, it has found a new hero, one that doesn’t curse, spit, slam or scowl, one that just gets on with gettin’ on and is happy to spend five minutes talking about it after.

Whatever happens this year, it promises to be a great spectacle.  Two top sportsman playing for the highest prize. I’ll leave the last words to Largo. “As the stakes increase so does the pain.  Rather like life”.

 

Nike over the years have produced some great TV adverts in the world of soccer and basketball and even a few controversial golf ones, I’m thinking Tiger talking to his father’s spirit, but of late some of them have been so bad they belong more in the incinerator than in The Oven.

Thus in a bad to kick off 2012 with an Oscar winning advert for their new Dunk shoes, Nike have wheeled out the heavyweights, the Pacino and deNiro of the golf acting world, Paul Casey and Anthony Kim. Such is their mere presence on the stage alone of the world’s number 20 and 78, Nike thought it also wise to dispense with any effects whatsoever.

Here is the result. Prepare to vomit! 

 

ni major champs 2011Major Golf Championship Dates 2012

The Masters Thursday, 5th April 2012

We’ll be just getting over the conclusion of the 6 Nations rugby when Masters time comes around.  Promises to be a super scrap with a fully fit Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy on a Major demon exorcizing mission at Augusta.

US Open, 14th June 2012

It’s set to be a sizzling summer with the US Open returning to The Olympic Club in San Francisco, California.  The powers that be will be hell bent on making sure there’s no repeat of the embarrassing 16 under par winning score that Rory McIlroy posted last year at Congressional. Lee Janzen won at the Olympic Club in 1998 with a score of level par!

The Open, 19th July 2012

After Royal Ascot and Wimbledon, The Open returns to Royal Lytham St Annes in Lancashire, 11 years after David Duval claimed the Claret Jug.  How the mighty have fallen.

PGA Championship, 9th August 2012

Smack bang in the middle of the Olympics we’ll all be treated to the final Major of the season at the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.  Its gonna be one hell of a golfing year.

The Ryder Cup, 28th September 2012

ryder cup dates Need I say anything!

2012 Hyundai Tournament Of Champions

Bubba Watson 16/1

watson If there’s one man whose form everyone knows about over the Christmas it’s Bubba. The man tweets about what he eats for breakfast for God’s sakes! Among some of his more interesting tweets last week however was his account of a course record 58 he shot from the back sticks at Estancia in Arizona during a social game. With Sherlock Holmes playing in the cinema you’ll excuse me for saying if he keeps playing like that this week it will be ELEMENTARY for Watson!

Webb Simpson 15/2

bart-putts If Webb Simpson can pick up right where he left off last season he’s going to be one of the main forces in US golf in 2012. Wins at the Wyndham and Deutsche Bank were part of seven top-10’s from his last nine events. If you’re one of those guys who bets on long odds Major Champions at the start of the season, you might like the look of Simpson at 40/1 for the Masters or 60/1 for The Open!

Steve Stricker 8/1

steve stricker funny[4] The Tournament Of Champions event title this week is stretching it a bit with the absence of many of the world’s elite, but nobody can argue that Steve Stricker isn’t a Champion. A two time winner last season, Stricks has been quick out of the blocks for the past two seasons with three top-10’s at Kapalua in the last four stagings. Tied fourth last year behind Jonathon Byrd after a poor final round.

Best Of The Rest

imgbraveheart5 I like the look of Scotsman Martin Laird at 16/1. He’s another good early season performer, last year he had four top-10’s racked up before the Masters including a win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational which got him into this week’s event. Laird also played well at the Chevron World Challenge and finished tied fourth at Kapalua in 2010. Finally keep an eye of Bill Haas at 16/1, after his amazing end of season antics at The Tour Championship I’m really excited about his chances of jumping into the world’s top 10 this year. He starts the year in 27th.

2012 Hyundai Tournament of Champions Betting Preview and Tips, Betfair golf betting tips, boylesports golf tips, pga tour top tipster, European tour top tipster

Bubba Watson is at it again!  During a Christmas knock around with mates at Estancia Club in Scottsdale Bubbaclaus cruised around the 7,314 yard track in 58 shots.  And he did it all with the same ball.  And he managed to do it whilst tweeting to his faithful followers all the way round.

Bubba was taking part in the club’s Black Rock Game, held twice weekly so the record is official and means Watson holds the course record on all three men’s tees at the course.

Pic: Bubba tweeted pics of his ball, the course record plaque and his final putt

The feat even grabbed the attention of manufactured teen pop icon Justin Bieber who took time to come down off his pedestal and congratulate Watson on the twitter machine, tweeting "Atta boy @bubbawatson shooting a 58!!! What a beast."

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