November 2012

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the bag 2010 Rhys Davies what's in the bag 2010 Y.E. Yang what's in the bag angel cabrera What's in the bag ernie els what's in the bag Justin Rose what's in the bag Kenny Perry what's in the bag nick dougherty what's in the bag Rory McIlory what's in the bag ross fisher what's in the bag simon dyson what's in the bag stuart appleby What’s In The Bag 2010 Rickie Fowler winter golf special offers witb witb 2010 Ross Fisher witb edoardo molinari 2010 witb Francesco Molinari 2010 witb Jim Furyk 2010 witb matt kuchar 2010 witb Peter Lawrie 2010 witb rory mcilroy 2010 witb rory mcilroy 2012 Women's British Open Awards woody austin Y.E. Yang Yang's Hybrid

It was only a matter of time before things got messy with Rory’s existing sponsors as we all know Nike are not into sharing their stars. Oakley who have invested hugely into Rory and built their golf clothing collections around him have filed a lawsuit against both Rory McIlroy and Nike, claiming breach of contract.

rory

 

The case revolves around Oakley which used its right of first refusal to match Nike proposal and which they claim was ignored by the McIlroy camp, thereby breaching the Oakley-McIroy contract.

Reports say that Oakley offered about $60 million to McIlroy but the true figure wasn’t in the court documents.

Oakley now say their relationship with Rory is "irreparable",  which allows them the right to block McIlroy’s oakley-rory-mcilroyNike contract through the courts.

Oakley have completed all production and branding for the 2013 and spent $300,000 on a photo shoot for the 2013 apparel. They are seeking damages.

“Who the hell does he think he is coming in here and getting all brainy on us,” was the reaction of a long time member of the European Tour's all powerful Tournament Players Committee today to the induction of Peter Lawrie to their ranks. 

lawrie[5] The all powerful committee, previously known as the shorter European Tour Players Committee recently replaced Barry Lane and Richard Finch with the hyper intelligent Irishman.

The unnamed source inside the all powerful committee went on to say “Lawrie showed up in a suit, and had a laptop with Microsoft Word on it. A few of the caddies are saying he even knows how to use it.  We were getting along just fine deciding really important stuff like whose turn is it to wear white trousers this week until that skinny brainbox showed up at the top of the class.”

Lawrie, who studied Quantum Physics at University College Dublin didn’t take long to stamp his authority on the all powerful committee, immediately throwing a spanner in the  works of the 2014 Ryder Cup Captaincy debate.

“As someone who has yet to learn the workings of the committee, I have an entirely open mind ... but I might ask why is it only a two-horse race for the captaincy?” said the Dubliner peering out through a monocle and slamming a leather whip against a mahogany table.


”What is happening in America has really come out of the blue and maybe we'd need a third horse, a really big horse, to go up against Watson. I’m thinking Red Rum, Desert Orchid, Frankel or Shergar for European Captain. Are any of those still alive?  Hang on I’ll google them.”

The all powerful Players Committee are set to make an announcement on whether a third horse will be joining the Captaincy race after the 3.15 at Kempton tomorrow.

 

Hey, how are joo? I love the cooking, eh, at Christmas, I always cook the turkey. If joo wan to know to cook the perfect turkey, do this.

maj_santa Drive berry fast into Malaga to pick up the turkey about an hour before joo are ready to cook it so it comes up to room temperature before roasting. Give it a good rinse then pat it dry with some kitchen paper, joo don want it looking like Rory McIlory’s head eh?

Drizzle the meat with Spangish olive oil, add a few good sprinkles of salt and pepper and then rub this seasoning all over the bird, making sure you get in to all the nooks and crannies. I’n talking about the turkey no my wife eh!

Pull the skin at the neck-end back so joo can see a cavity and push about half of your stuffing inside.  Once done, pull and fold the skin over the opening and tuck it under the bird so it looks nice. I’n still talking about the turkey eh!

Cover the turkey with tin foil then put it in the hot oven and immediately turn the temperature down to 180°c/350°f/gas 4. Cook for about 35 to 40 minutes per kilo. The 5kg bird in this recipe will take about 3 to 3½ hours. That is roughly 4 bottles of Rioja time eh!

Have joor wife check on the turkey every 20 minutes or so and keep it from drying out by basting it with the lovely juices from the bottom of the pan. After 2½ hours, remove the foil so the skin gets golden and crispy.

When the time is up, tell joor wife to get out of the kitchen and take joor turkey out of the oven. If the juices run clear and the meat pulls apart easily, it’s ready. If not, pop the turkey back in the oven to cook for about another 2 glasses of wine. Once ready, cover the turkey with tin foil and a few clean tea towels for about the time it takes to smoke a cuban and let it rest before serving.

Joo are welcome.  Happy Christmas.

Fancy yourself as being in my league when it comes to useless information about golf. Here’s a series of questions to test you to the very limit.  Let me know how you get on and don't even think of googling the answers!

Scoring Guide

18/20 or better = Living legend

15/20 or better = Send your CV in to Sky

10/20 or better = Maybe some on course reporting

less than 10 = You need to read more GolfCentralDaily son!

Questions

clip_image0021. What is jungle Bird's real name?

2. What is the name of the kid Rory McIlroy cleavered at The Open?

3. Name the Swede who had 2 holes in one in one round this year?

4. Who drove it into a bin this year on the PGA Tour?

5. Who nearly lost his finger in a boat winch accident?

6. Why was Randal Lewis in the news this year?

7. Kevin Na got to cut down his '16' tree. At what event?

clip_image002[8]8. Name the Huntingdon golf coach who went berserk?

9. Who said 'you're shitting me' after watching a Kevin Na road shot?

clip_image002[6]10. The engraver nearly made a massive cock up of The Open medal. what was he about to engrave on it?

11. Whose caddie made made the world’s worst job at ditching a 15th club this year?

12. What record score did Rhein Gibson shoot in one round this year?

13. Name 3 golfers inducted into the Hall Of Fame this year.

14. What did Feherty compare Ernie’s putter to at the Tavistock Cup?

15. Who said “Leave the bag alone, you TV Muppet!” at The Open?

16. Who DQ’d himself from the US PGA C’ship after remembering a rules breach during dinner that night?

1clip_image0017. Name the Swede who got completely naked on the beach for ESPN’s Body issue this year.`

18. Who talked with Kelly Tilghman about smoking a few spliffs this year.

19. Who won $35,000 at a Poker Stars event in the Caribbean back in January?

20. Who’s twitter account was shut down after a rant during the US Presidential Election?

Answers tomorrow!

They say he once played a round of golf in Mount Juliet.  They say he was 15 under par after 12 holes and walked off, claiming ‘golf was piss easy’.

He’s Irish cycling legend and he’s coming to the West Of Ireland for the Cunga Christmas Party.  And in the absence of any better options, it shall also be the GolfCentralDaily Christmas Party. So technically speaking, two legends will be attending.  (I’m the other one by the way.)

If anybody is around Cong in County Mayo this Saturday night, do join us in Lydon’s Lodge from 7pm.  €20 quid at the door gets you a meal, front row seats at a Q&A session and a chance to buy me and Sean a drink after.  We’ve also arranged for Black Betty and Gangnam Style both to be played by the DJ until five past two.

Oh, I nearly forgot. Stock up on solpadeine too because we are all headed cycling with Sean on Sunday morning.

 

 

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Just saw this online and it seemed to be in the spirit of giving for Christmas so I’m happy to share it.

 

voucher small

Order a Christmas voucher TODAY ONLY (11th December) from Carr Golf and they will double the value of it.

Vouchers can be used at 8 golf shops throughout Leinster.

To order over the phone with a credit or debit card CALL 01-8609321 they will also post it to you free of charge. You can’t ask for more than that

Terms and conditions apply.

 

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The mood inside the Harrington house took a turn for the worse on Sunday evening after husband Padraig failed to record popular TV show ‘Love Hate’ properly on the Sky Plus Box.  According to sources, Harrington cancelled the recording after nine minutes when a viewing clash warning appeared on screen. It’s thought Harrington chose instead to watch Lee Evans Live on the Comedy Channel, leaving wife Caroline fuming when she returned home.

padraig“I came home, made a cup of tea and sat down in front of the TV; I was really looking forward to seeing what would happen Nidgey and whether Tommy would get wacked after banging the RA guy’s wife.  I was bloody raging when the ‘end of programme press back up to return’ message greeted me after nine minutes,”  Caroline told reporters.

“This having Padraig loitering around the house at Christmas really isn’t suiting me,” she continued. “There’s dribble on toilet seat, blobs of toothpaste left stuck to the sink and he never leaves the car keys in the same place twice. I really cant wait until the golf season starts and I get my house back.”

The situation escalated a few minutes later when a terse stand off between the Harringtons in front of the TV was suddenly punctuated by the sound of the home heating boiler on automatic timer kicking in. Caroline was first to go on the attack.

“The reason I pressed the bloody series link button was so as I could come home and watch the bloody programme.  You know well it’s the only bloody thing I watch on TV.  And, to add insult to injury, what did you cancel it to watch?  Bloody Lee Evans. That git is on every bloody minute on that bloody channel.”

The clearly irritated three time Major Champion was stung into action.

“How am I supposed to know how a Sky Plus box works anyway?” he said. “In case you haven’t noticed I’m usually too busy out on Tour trying to earn us a living so we can pay the bloody subscription.”

Clearly realizing he said exactly the last thing a working man should ever say to a homemaking wife, Harrington recoiled into the chair and waited for the killer blow to be delivered. 

“Excuse me?  Excuse me?  If you want to look to after the bloody kids from now on, that’s bloody perfect.  I’ll tell you what, you feed, bath and drive the kids half way around Dublin every bloody day next year and see how you get on.  I’ll go out and get a job; I’ll probably earn more than you made this year anyway.”

Not wanting to be the first to leave the TV room and admit defeat, both sat arms folded in silence for 20 minutes through an extremely long ad break and the second part of a Two and Half Men episode featuring Ashton Kuchar.

Flicking the remote control Caroline then discovered that her episode of Love Hate was actually just about to start on RTE+1.  Settling back into her chair she  let out an exasperated sigh as Padraig slinked off up to bed.

Here’s Rory new mansion complete with six bedrooms, nine bathrooms, a world-class gym, a private deep water dock, and a putting green.

After a period renting a house near the Loxahatchee River in Florida, Rory McIlroy will become a neighbour of Tiger Woods after coming close to the $10.9 million-asking price for 2380 Old Gate Lane. The Intracoastal-side property is in the Old Gate enclave of Pam Beach Gardens.Rory McIlroy Purchases Palm Beach Gardens Mansion

Lovable rogue Denis Pugh, might have us all fooled as the comic foil to his terminally miserable colleagues on Sky Sports Golf coverage but there’s more to him than meets the eye.  When Denis finishes giving millions of us a belly laugh by ballzing up a GMac swing demo live on air he becomes one of the most respected figures in the Music Industry.

Pugh, 84, likes to take time away from golf at Christmas and get back to his first love as one of the world’s leading Song Title Designers (STDs). He made his millions working with all the big record companies over the years, tweaking the names of songs in order to ensure mass appeal and more importantly, massive sales.

denis xmas funny “My first real success as an STD was with Fergal Sharkey back in the 80’s” says Pugh as he relaxes back in his kingly chair with a glass of port. “They were just about to release a single for Fergal called ‘A Good Pump Is Hard To Find’. I thought it didn’t feel right and changed the word ‘Pump’ to ‘Heart’ and it became a huge hit.”  That put me on the map and it snowballed from there.

Often now seen by day pottering around The Wisley, Pugh reveals he travelled extensively during his heyday. “I was responsible for Europe’s smash hit ‘The Final Countdown’” continued Denis, “Would you believe they wanted to call it ‘The Final Stopwatch’ before bringing me to California to step in!”

As he beckons one of the servants over to throw another cedar log on the blazing fire, Pugh also recalls his two years spent in Italy working with world famous Tenor Luciano Pavarotti.  “Such a dear dear man, but absolutely clueless with lyrics”, he laughs. “Pav was dead-set on calling this song ‘Nessun Doorknob’ before I convinced him that ‘Nessun Dorma’ was a bit more in keeping with the whole Italian vibe.”

Pugh eventually left Italy in 1983 shrouded in controversy after newspapers claimed he secretly fathered two sons.  “It was all nonsense” he says of the claims. “Those were the days when women were queuing up for me but to think that somewhere in Italy right now there are two 30 year old Italian brothers playing golf with a little Denis Pugh move at the top and I’ll hold my hands up!” he laughs. “It’s ridiculous!”

Tightening the silk sash on his robe, the multi billionaire starts to recall another memory.  “I remember being at a party with Elton John one night in Munich.  I had my hair tied back in a ponytail in those days, Elton was out of it on smack, and I found myself sitting at a piano at 3am with this German babe with the most hairy armpits I’ve ever seen.  She wanted me to listen to her song ‘107 Red Balloons’.  I remember telling her, ‘cut those balloons back to 99 Nena and you might have something there’. And sure the rest as they say is history.”

These days the record companies queue up at the Pugh mansion to tweak the titles of prospective Christmas Number Ones and Denis counts Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh as dear friends. “Back in 2005 Leona Lewis was hot property. But the only thing she hadn’t got and needed was an STD and a nosejob. I remember sitting in the studio with Simon, cup of coffee in hand, listening to Leona on the other side of the glass laying down the track ‘A Spanner Like This’, and thinking it didn’t feel right.  I tinkered around with a few alternatives like ‘A Gasket Like This’ and ‘A Suitcase Like This’ and to be honest I was struggling until one of the crew said ‘I’ll be back in a moment’ and it hit me like a train. Leona put down a few takes of ‘A Moment Like This’ and she never looked back.  And guess what? Did you see her nose recently? All fixed up with the lumpy middley bit gone.  Thanks to dear old Denis, the STD everyone wants!”

 

Next week: Christmas With Bruce Critchley In Pantomime as Widow Wanky.

So who, over the course of the 2012 season was better statistically; Rory McIlroy or Tiger Woods?

Stat piece pic

We painstakingly compared both players’ performances over 100 different stat categories spanning the entire gamut of the game to see just who comes out on top.

2012 Season Rory Vs Tiger Stat Table

We put each player head to head over each stat, declaring either Rory (R) or Tiger (T) the winner. The final score is shown under the table.

 

Rory (R)

 

Tiger (T)

  Winner

Driving Distance

310.1

5th

297.4

32nd

R

Driving Accuracy Percentage

56.61%

156th

63.93%

55th

T

Greens in Regulation Percentage

66.36%

60th

67.58%

29th

T

Strokes Gained - Putting

.087

82nd

.332

35th

T

Eagles (Holes per)

108.0

5th

301.5

134th

R

Birdie Average

4.20

1st

3.97

4th

R

Scoring Average

68.873

1st

68.904

2nd

R

Sand Save Percentage

56.16%

22nd

49.00%

83rd

R

Total Driving

161

54th

87

6th

T

All-Around Ranking

256

2nd

381

10th

R

FedExCup Regular Season Points

2,092

3rd

2,269

1st

T

Playoffs Points for the FedExCup

2,827

2nd

2,663

3rd

R

Money Leaders

$8,047,952

1st

$6,133,158

2nd

R

Par Breakers

24.28%

1st

22.39%

9th

R

GIR Pct. - Fairway Bunker

28.0%

190th

46.9%

120th

T

Par 3 Birdie or Better Leaders

17.59%

4th

17.47%

6th

R

Par 4 Birdie or Better Leaders

18.75%

9th

16.67%

51st

R

Par 5 Birdie or Better Leaders

53.05%

1st

48.34%

14th

R

Birdie or Better Conversion Percentage

34.68%

1st

31.66%

20th

R

Scoring Average (Actual)

69.63

1st

69.78

2nd

R

Scoring Average Before Cut

69.87

6th

69.24

2nd

T

Round 3 Scoring Average

68.83

3rd

70.25

45th

R

Final Round Scoring Average

69.83

11th

70.40

32nd

R

Total Eagles

9

30th

4

132nd

R

Total Birdies

227

132nd

266

91st

T

Career Money Leaders

$13,357,560

88th

$100,950,700

1st

n/a

Consecutive Cuts

7

20th

7

20th

-

Top 10 Finishes

10

1st

9

3rd

R

Ball Striking

114

51st

35

12th

T

Longest Drives

409

30th

387

166th

R

Scrambling

60.24%

33rd

63.17%

4th

T

Bounce Back

21.23%

58th

18.90%

117th

R

Par 3 Performance

-2

5th

+5

13th

R

Par 4 Performance

+10

14th

-4

3rd

T

Par 5 Performance

-84

66th

-92

43rd

T

Left Tendency

47.3

67th

54.9

168th

R

Right Tendency

52.7

123rd

45.1

24th

T

Average Going for it Shot Distance Yards

238.0

2nd

239.3

3rd

R

Total Putting

164.8

65th

115.3

28th

T

Approaches from > 200 yards

42' 2"

2nd

42' 3"

3rd

R

Scrambling from > 30 yards

34.29%

31st

37.21%

10th

T

GIR Percentage - 100-125 yards

75.53%

114th

76.14%

100th

T

GIR Percentage - 75-100 yards

66.67%

189th

76.92%

140th

T

GIR Percentage - < 75 yards

90.91%

32nd

92.04%

15th

T

GIR Percentage - 200+ yards

46.67%

73rd

50.42%

32nd

T

GIR Percentage - 175-200 yards

62.61%

7th

65.13%

1st

T

GIR Percentage - 150-175 yards

60.14%

159th

69.27%

12th

T

GIR Percentage - 125-150 yards

73.61%

46th

70.00%

111th

R

GIR Percentage - < 125 yards

81.82%

103rd

84.14%

48th

T

GIR Percentage - < 100 yards

86.13%

88th

89.21%

23rd

T

Approaches from 100-125 yards

18' 0"

24th

19' 5"

75th

R

Approaches from 75-100 yards

17' 7"

102nd

17' 1"

86th

T

Approaches from 50-75 yards

17' 10"

139th

15' 2"

83rd

T

Approaches from 175-200 yards

30' 2"

3rd

30' 1"

2nd

T

Approaches from 150-175 yards

27' 1"

65th

24' 8"

6th

T

Approaches from 125-150 yards

19' 9"

5th

22' 6"

67th

R

Approaches from 50-125 yards

17' 11"

53rd

18' 5"

84th

R

Approaches from 200-225 yards

34' 0"

2nd

35' 10"

6th

R

Approaches from 225-250 yards

46' 8"

24th

48' 2"

41st

R

Approaches from > 275 yards

71' 0"

16th

63' 4"

6th

T

Approaches from 250-275 yards

54' 7"

13th

53' 5"

9th

T

Putting from Inside 5'

96.86%

44th

97.07%

31st

T

Putting from 5-10'

57.32%

71st

55.79%

92nd

R

Putting from - 10-15'

31.90%

59th

30.99%

73rd

R

Putting from - 15-20'

21.79%

35th

17.71%

104th

R

Putting from - 20-25'

14.29%

39th

20.00%

3rd

T

Putting from - > 25'

2.44%

191st

6.60%

49th

T

Putting from 5-15'

46.52%

76th

45.18%

98th

R

Putting from 15-25'

18.90%

22nd

18.67%

25th

R

Putting from 3-5'

86.67%

103rd

91.67%

13th

T

Left Rough Tendency

17.99%

180th

17.27%

170th

T

Right Rough Tendency

19.42%

183rd

13.66%

59th

T

Driving Pct. 300+ (All Drives)

51.79%

4th

39.58%

17th

R

GIR Percentage from Other than Fairway

54.27%

29th

51.78%

80th

R

Going for the Green

75.38%

2nd

63.58%

21st

R

Proximity to Hole

33' 0"

5th

33' 6"

11th

R

Fairway Proximity

28' 1"

1st

28' 7"

5th

R

Rough Proximity

41' 9"

29th

48' 7"

182nd

R

Proximity to Hole from Sand

7' 0"

2nd

10' 1"

125th

R

Scrambling from the Rough

59.60%

27th

61.32%

16th

T

Average Distance of Putts made

71' 7"

119th

76' 4"

34th

T

3-Putt Avoidance

3.09%

96th

2.82%

71st

T

Front 9 Scoring Average

34.85

11th

34.69

1st

T

Back 9 Scoring Average

34.78

1st

35.09

6th

R

Lowest Round

64

67th

62

10th

T

GIR Percentage - 100+ yards

64.76%

26th

66.30%

8th

T

Average Distance to Hole After Tee Shot

163.3

11th

174.6

88th

R

Average Distance after Going for it Shot

19.8

3rd

19.6

2nd

T

Driving Pct. 300-320 (All Drives)

29.46%

4th

25.15%

21st

R

Driving Pct. 320+ (All Drives)

22.32%

7th

14.43%

19th

R

Rough Tendency

37.41%

190th

30.93%

133rd

T

Club Head Speed

120.21

10th

120.94

8th

T

Ball Speed

178.07

8th

177.69

10th

R

Smash Factor

1.481

100th

1.469

173rd

R

Launch Angle

11.25

75th

10.67

114th

R

Spin Rate

2,770.4

68th

2,391.5

175th

R

Distance to Apex

197.3

13th

198.4

8th

T

Apex Height

110' 11"

21st

102' 1"

62nd

R

Hang Time

6.4

30th

6.3

47th

R

Carry Distance

296.0

8th

296.7

7th

T

Carry Efficiency

2.463

50th

2.457

57th

R

Total Distance Efficiency

2.601

45th

2.554

125th

T

Final Score

Rory: 53, Tiger 47

Conclusion

Despite being shared over many categories, the stats do throw up an alarming fact. Equipment matters everywhere. If you consider that Tiger generates 0.73 mph more clubhead speed than Rory, yet Rory achieves 0.38 mph more ball speed than Tiger and drives on average 12.7 yards further, it all points to the difference in equipment both men were using.

Off the tee, the difference in spin rates, the height both men drive the ball and the fact that Tiger actually carried the ball through the air longer than Rory this year would suggest a highly likely tapering back of Rory’s distance stats with his new Nike equipment. Unless that is, that Nike can bridge the technology and performance gap to Titleist by the start of next season.

On the green, from 5 to 20 feet Rory clearly has the upper hand. His birdie conversion rate is the best on Tour, especially on par 5’s. It seems unthinkable that he would not bring his Scotty Cameron putter with him into his Nike bag.

 

Thanks to Barrie Trainor and all my facebook friends who asked me to pop something up about the Hi5 Futures Tour; I’m happy to get the word out.

logo_hi5_tour The Hi5 Futures Tour basically helps young pros who have an eye for life on the Major Tours to cut their teeth by putting them into competitive events, with similar players on golf courses set up under exacting tournament conditions.

So many good young players turn pro under the assumption that it’s easy to get onto the European Tour.  It isn’t.  There’s so much to learn about playing Tour golf, about figuring out if its for you, about discovering if your good enough.  That’s why a satellite tour such as Hi5 Futures Tour can help mould and direct the next generation of stars.

The goal of the Hi5 futures tour is to give young players the chance to earn prize money and progress onto the Challenge tour and then ultimately secure European Tour status.  Many of the events are held during the Winter months across South Eastern Spain where the climate and courses are excellent.

Top players who have competed on the Hi5 Pro Tour include: David Horsey, Romain Wattel and Carlos Del Moral

Check out the upcoming tournaments below.

28th Jan – 06th Feb 2013

Hi5 Futures Tour Oliva Nova / Galiana swing

07th Feb – 12th Feb 2013

Hi5 Futures Tour “ La Sella Fourball Pairs Challenge”

13th Feb – 22rd Feb 2013

Hi5 Futures Tour Panoramica swing

23rd Feb – 01 March 2013

Hi5 Futures Tour Castillon Open ( TBC )

11th March – 20 March 2013

Hi5 Futures Tour Egyption Open ( TBC )

 

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George Coetzee 9/1

Eight top 10’s this season and four of those since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship makes me believe George Coetzee could figure very prominently this week. Second in the South African Open just a month ago, Coetzee sparkled in the third round with a 63 on the Serengeti Course. Branden Grace will likely head the betting but George will be on my slip this week.

Peter Lawrie 34/1

A massive opportunity this week for Ireland’s Peter Lawrie to really perform.  The 6,800 odd yard Royal Durban is extremely short, wet and right up Peter’s alley.  What he lacks in driving distance Lawrie makes up for in accuracy.  Tied fourth in Hong Kong on a course remarkably similar in dimensions to this weeks and performed well at the DP World  Championship with a top 15.

Hennie Otto 34/1

Another veteran who won late last year in South Africa is Hennie Otto.  Put in a sterling defence of his title this year with a final round of 62 to claim ninth place.  Again, a man whose game may be more suited to this treeless Durban layout incased in a racetrack than many others.

Being-a-South-African

Charl Schwartzel 7/1

thai_securityLee Westwood steamed home here last year having almost shot a 59 on day one but given his current form it’s tough to see a repeat.  Not to say that Westwood wont contend, but my money will be on South African Charl Schwartzel who has found his groove recently clocking up a top five at the South African Open and a tied third at the DP World Championship.  Charl finished second here last year at 15-under par, seven shots behind Westwood. The 7,453-yard Amata Spring championship course sets up well for the former Masters champion and he’s tip here. 

Sergio Garcia 9/1

Are Asian greens that bit more suited to Sergio? I certainly think so and the Spaniard finishes out a successful year with a real shot at a win this week. Since his win at The Wyndham back in August El Nino has only played four European/PGA Tour events but crucially hasn’t finished outside the top 25 in any. Third at the Barclays and a top 10 in Dubai during an extraordinary week of birdies and bogeys mean Garcia’s odds are tighter than normal.

Simon Dyson 34/1

thaiWe’ve only seen flashes of the Dyson we know this season but the Englishman loves coming back to Asia where he plied his trade during the formative years.  A former winner of the Asian Tour Order Of Merit, Dyson will have no trouble adapting to the conditions having played played on the winning Royal Trophy team here in 2010 and tied for fourth in the inaugural staging of the tournament last season.

 

Chawalit Plaphol  & Masanori Kobayashi 151/1

These are long odds fun bets but not without a little nouse.  Chawalit Plaphol tied for fourth here last year and is a three time winner on the Asian Tour.  Form of late on the Asian Tour has been poor but you can never discount a player on his return to a happy hunting ground. Plaphol opened with a 73 last year, as opposed to Westwood’s 60, and still tied fourth, so is definitely worth a euro.

As is Japanese stalwart Masanori Kobayashi also at 151/1.  He won the Asia Pacific Panasonic Open during the year.

 

All through December, I’ll be having a look back at the funniest stories of the 2012 season on GolfCentralDaily.  Click on any link to open the full story!

Defibrillator For Pugh as Sarah Stirk Steps Into Di Dougherty’s Heels On Sky Sports Golf

clip_image001[6]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.

North Korean Dictator Breaks With Tradition-Styles Himself on Kenny Perry

clip_image002[4]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.

Chad Campbell’s Sister To Split From Elite Marine

Less than two years into their marriage, Chadlene Campbell twin sister of PGA Tour golfer Chad Campbell, has announced she is filing for divorce. clip_image003[3]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.”

Louis Oosthuizen Arrested After Stealing Tots Bike

clip_image005[4]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. 
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.

Adams Deal Could Go Sour If Karlsson Cant Find Clubs In Time

Adams 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.”

Defiant Finchem Vows To Reign Over PGA until 2016. Gets New Outfit on eBay

clip_image006[4]Bursting into a Steve Stricker press conference today at the Sony Open where up to seven journalists were sleeping soundly, Tim Finchem fired several RPG rounds into the walls and defiantly declared himself supreme commander of the PGA Tour until 2016. Happily none of the journalists present received serious injury during the incident, although some suffered shock after being suddenly awoken.

Later Finchem appeared in an outfit, shades and wig which he claimed to have recently bought “pretty cheap from eBay.lya” and spoke to a number of loyal supporters from the back of a pick up truck from his heavily fortified compound in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

Haney’s “Tell All” Book About Tiger Woods Will Not Be Called “Butch Stacked and on The Crack”

clip_image007[4]  Top Tiger Woods officials were today breathing a sigh of relief when it was discovered that Hank Haney’s upcoming book on Tiger Woods is actually going to be crap.  Rumours, fuelled by the book’s publishers Crown Archetype at Random House, had been circulating that Haney’s account of his six years with Tiger was going to be a “tell all” blockbuster entitled “Butch, Stacked and On The Crack” recounting explicit accounts of Tiger’s drug fuelled days and more worryingly, his nights.
"We are all very relieved around here that the book is so crap” said a senior Woods spokesman, adding “ It’s actually 200 pages of mind numbingly boring stuff about Tiger’s golf swing and all the stuff that was wrong with it. 

Magnum’s Moustache Comes Out Of Retirement To Help Wagner Win Sony Open

“Ronnie”, the moustache worn by Tom Selleck in the TV show Magnum P.I. was last night celebrating the most unlikely of victories after helping Johnson Wagner to win the Sony Open in Hawaii.  The 62 year old nut duster now lives in Malibu Beach living off royalties clip_image008[3]from the 80’s hit TV show and had been on the island by chance to film a 25th anniversary reunion celebration of the original Magnum cast.

“I was just here hanging with Magnum’s upper lip along with Higgins and TC” said Ronnie the tache. “Some of the guys were breakin’ my balls calling me a “nut broom” and “prison pussy” so I needed to get away.  I came across Johnson Wagner on the putting green at the golf course and he needed some help with his putting alignment so I jumped up on his lip and it seemed to help. When he looks down through my middle, it shows the line perfectly.  I’ve been dabbling in golf with Geoff Ogilvy lately also, it’s is an avenue I would really like to explore.  I’d like to see how far I could go in this business; how cool would it be to get under the nose Rory McIlroy.”

John Daly In Deep Trouble Again With Tour In Qatar

clip_image009[4]Intestinally restricted John Daly was yet again in hot water with the European Tour after this time ignoring specific orders handed down to him by big boss George O’Grady on Tuesday.  Daly shot an opening 67 to lead in the clubhouse in Qatar and was reportedly “an absolute gentleman” throughout his round; a clear violation of his terms of employment with the Tour.

Pic: Daly alone in the locker room in Doha with smelly socks left to contemplate his latest breach.

“We are very disappointed indeed with the conduct of Mr. Daly”, supreme commander O’Grady said today. “It was clearly outlined in John’s contract that he was to hit five balls into the lake on the 11th, break a chair over a marshals head on 16 and storm off the course on 17.  Yet again he has let us down.”

New Jersey Police, investigating the death of notorious crack addict say they have recovered an illegal belly putter from the scene.

sleeping rough“It was a grizzly find, very difficult for our officers,” said staff sergeant Alonzo Morning at the scene. “We are not looking for anyone else in relation to this death.  We’ve recovered an illegal belly putter alongside the body.  It’s pretty clear the deceased had been anchoring shortly before his death.”

The county coroner confirmed the cause of death following a post mortem. “It seems the victim was attempting to get an illegal high by pushing a belly putter into his abdomen. It looks like he pushed it just a little too far and the euphoric effect of the illegal putting caused his heart to explode. It’s an all too common sight nowadays.”

The dead man has been named locally as Timmy Rimmer, and was described as “a nice but nervous guy who lived rough on the streets.

“He started out with hash but moved quickly to crack,” said his ex dealer Marlo Stanfield.  “He was always looking for something to get an even bigger buzz.  Lately he had been getting a hit from banned titanium drivers but nobody ever expected him  to graduate to abusing belly putters.  He should have stuck with the sh*t he knew.”

Detective Morning finished his statement by again urging members of the public to be vigilant against those more vulnerable members of society who turn to belly putters.  He warned against heckling them on the streets  which could diminishing their already ailing confidence levels and lead to further incidents.

Less than five minutes after the USGA and the R&A jointly banned anchored belly putting methods, Odyssey Golf released what they claim to be a new line of putters designed to help cheating golfers cheat legally.

arm lock putterThe new ‘Arm Lock’ putters are designed to be attached to the forearm.  “It’s physically impossible to anchor this new putter in the belly” said Odyssey’s Chief Designer Rollie Exhaustieson as he pushed the new Arm Lock as far away from his body as possible.

However avid golfer Simon Webster, 38, wasn’t convinced after trading in his illegal odyssey belly putter for a new legal Arm Lock version at a golf shop in Wigan.  “They’ve given me the exact same putter back again, it’s the same length and even has the exact same grip.  The girl at the till said to just hold it against my arm.  Are you shi**ing me?” said Webster.

Responding to this criticism Rollie Exhaustieson said “Unlike other Odyssey putters, which come with 3° of standard loft, the Arm Lock putters have 7° because pressing the top of the grip against the forearm creates a forward press. We’ve achieved this subtle loft change by throwing a whole bunch of belly putters into a giant car crusher, turning it on for a few seconds, then fishing them all back out again.  We’ve even added the words "Arm Lock" to a red area in the section where the club should be fastened against the arm. It’s hard to believe Mr. Webster missed that.”

More as it emerges.

 

Almost nine-time major winner Tom Watson says golf has no place at the Olympic Games in 2016.

tom watson "I still think of Olympics as track and field and not golf to be honest with you. I don't want to pour cold water on it, but I don't think it should be in the Olympic Games."

Tom’s obviously never seen the exciting battle for the gold for the lazer class in the sailing, the wonderful artistry of the gymnastics floor routines with the ribbon or the excruciating spectacle that is Olympic walking. 

If he had, dare I say, he might have a rethink.

Here’s the list of Golf Digest Ireland Top 100 Courses 2013.  What do you think?  I’ll have my say later when the heart palpitations die down.
The rankings are based on seven criteria:
Shot making/variety 20 points
Design variety 10 points
Memorability 10 points
Wow factor 10 points
Condition 10 points
Playability 10 points
Degree of difficulty/fairness 10 points

1. Royal County Down (=)
2. Portmarnock (=)
3. Royal Portrush (=)
4. Waterville (=)
5. Lahinch (Up 1)
6. Ballybunion (Old) (down 1)
7. The European Club (up 1)
8. Tralee (Down 1)
9. County Louth (Baltray) (=)
10. Adare (=)

After pushing the GMac ‘mashed potato’ cry to the limit yesterday at the Tiger Woods World Challenge,  security officials finally apprehended the serial heckler responsible following a protracted investigation.

GMac Kristin He has been identified as PGA Tour electrician Tom Wazowski, 49, originally from Iowa.  The net had been closing in on Wozowski after a joint USGA/ PGA operation which saw officials work together and figure out the same guy was travelling to and heckling at every tournament the length and breadth of America.

Released after an hours ‘Tackling’ in a  room alone with the USGA’s Mike Davis, a bloodied and bruised Wazowski emerged defiant telling the assembled media he never really planned to become a heckler.

Related story: GMac Facing Life Of Marriage Hell After Subtle Break Up Comments Get Horribly Misconstrued

"It started around the year 2002, I had all the electrical work for the tournament done so went out to watch Sergio Garcia play a few holes.  He was messing around with his grip so much I just got fed up and shouted ‘Hit the f*cking ball for f*ck sake’.  All of the crowd cheered and really liked it so it started there.  I’ve heckled several players successfully over the years including Ben Crane and Rory Sabatini and I even travelled to France on vacation one time where I heckled Colin Montgomerie.  That was one of my most memorable heckles.  This year was the first year I decided to concentrate on heckling one person.  I knew I was taking a big risk but wanted to mark 10 years as a heckler with something big.”

“I cant claim to have invented the phrase ‘mashed potatoes’. I just heard it on some cookery programme on TV and jotted into my heckle book.  I couldn’t have imagined that when I used it with GMac it would become such a massive hit.  Watching him get so pissed off and even do the tosser symbol at me yesterday made it all worthwhile.”

 

Now banned from the PGA Tour forever, Wazowski spoke of his future plans, “I think my heckling days are over now.  It’s a bit too early too decide what I’ll do next, I think I deserve a break to spend some time with my family and just have a think.  I hear there’s an opening for a madman to knock cyclists off their bikes at next year’s Tour de France, but as I said I wont be making any decisions until after the Christmas break.” 

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As part of the BBC Christmas schedule announced today, R&A chief Peter Dawson is set to reprise the role of host of the hit game show Blankety Blank held for many years by his late brother Les.

Speaking to reporters outside television centre whilst trying to stop a blue skittle falling out the side of his mouth Dawson said “I’m really happy to be taking over from Les, even if it is for just for a one off Christmas special. Our younger brother Matt, the ‘Question of Sport’ guy, has been really great at helping show me how to act like a complete fanny on TV.”

New BBC director general Worzel Gummage who took over from the guy who knew Jimmy Saville was kiddie fiddling for years and said nothing about it said “We’ve been trying to get Peter to do this for ages.  He’s really well known for entertaining gentlemen in the private members bar at St Andrews with his impromptu gurning displays when all the pole dancing finishes around 2am.”

Dawson agreed to do the Special after the BBC said he could personally choose the six celebrity panellists who will help with the traditional fill-in-the-blank statements.

“Obviously we needed someone funny looking so I chose Mike Davis from the USGA.  Someone drove a flymo down the middle of that guys head, it’s hilarious!  We needed a know-it-all: Ewan Murray, a complete and utter bullshitter who himself is completely oblivious to the fact: Bruce Critchley, a really good looking woman: Laura Davies, someone who can talk the hind legs off a donkey: Padraig Harrington and someone who just looks really really pale and creepy but who you cant help feeling sorry for: Robert Lee.

separated Blankety Blank became famous for it’s double entendre questions, a tradition which Dawson hopes to keep alive.

“I’ve been busy working on questions all week,” the portly frontman said out of the corner of his mouth.  “So far I’ve come up with

‘Did you catch a glimpse of Colin Montgomerie on the tee?  He has to have the world's biggest pair of  _________.’

and

‘I met Keegan Bradley yesterday.  He wanted to shove his belly putter so far up my _________________ I’d be tasting grip for a week.’

Contestants on the Christmas Special are set to be wealthy businessmen flown in from Asia and The Emirates.  In a subtle tweak to the original show, when presented with the Blankety Blank cheque book and pen, they will  be required to fill in the cheques and present them back to the European Tour.  The biggest cheque wins.

The Blankety Blank Christmas Special will be shown on Christmas Day on BBC1 before Cat hits gouged in the face with a broken bottle in Eastenders and Del Boy and Rodders do Batman and Robin in Only Fool ‘n Horses.

Today sees the start of the 2012 Seve Legends Tournament at Pebble Beach.  Over the years the great man has been honoured in many ways but this year to coincide with the event which helps raise awareness and funds for the Seve Ballesteros Foundation, expert cocktail waiter and Seve fan Damien Higgins has created a very special Seve cocktail.

How to make Seve Ballesteros “Al Rojo Vivo”

Al Rojo Vivo Seve Ballesteros Cocktail

Ingredients: 150 ml Rioja Crianza, 15 ml PX Sherry, 15 ml Apple Brandy , 2 bar spoons Seville Orange Marmalade, 3 dashes Spanish Bitters

Add all ingredients into a Boston Shaker and fill with cubed ice. Shake well for about 10 seconds and then strain into a red wine goblet. Fill with cubed and then crushed ice and garnish lavishly with orange, red apple and mint.

Social and Cocktail says:

Especially constructed in the memory of Seve Ballesteros, the fiery spice of the good quality wine is complimented by the sweet, raisiny, mixed spice of the sherry and the chamomile, citrus and raspberry of the small batch Spanish bitters. To give balance and texture the marmalade gives a sweet acidity and the brandy brings strength and balances the bitterness of the marmalade and bitters.

The drink itself is based on the Spanish Sangria and the traditional mixed drink the Cobbler. The deep red colour reflects Seve’s passion and fiery nature, and the lavish garnish his flamboyance and skill. The garnish itself has meaning; with the orange represent the orange influence in the cocktail as well as a famous Spanish export, like Seve. The apple also tells you what you will find in the drink as well as representing his home region of Cantabria. The mint represents the fairways and greens he was so proficient on and gives the drink aroma. The drink as a whole is imposing, just as Seve was, with great height and colour.

 

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English prankster David Lynn, runner up at the US PGA Championship just a few short months ago, is this evening left facing the prospect of a future without golf thanks to a heretofore glossed over paragraph in yesterday’s R&A anchoring ban communiqué.

david lynn ben crane_thumb[1] The final part of the letter bans, from January 1st 2013, any player whose shoulders, tip to tip, exceed one metre in length.  Players with outrageously large shoulders resembling those of a cow, are deemed to have a decided advantage when putting, as opposed to normal human beings.

R&A Chief Peter Dawson, who always looks like he’s lost control of something in his mouth, like a polo mint, said “The only player that this ban is going to affect is David Lynn and if you take into account the world’s entire population of golfers, that’s really nobody. Not calling Mr.Lynn nobody for a second.”

Lynn was born with a disease called “Linebackers Syndrome” which manifests itself in the form of shoulders resembling an NFL players’ when fully kitted out.  Other symptoms include being just a small bit daft.

If he wants to continue his golf career, the only option open now to Stoke’s third most famous over 38 year old is an excruciatingly painful scapular reduction operation followed by up to a year of rehabilitation.  Even then the risk is large, with 50% of patients unable to ever shrug again let alone play golf.

“It’s like a huge weight has been placed on my, what’s the word, oh yeah shoulders”, said Lynn “all that’s left for me is to send in the old CV to Sky Sports and see if they’ll give me a job.  Then again, a life sat next to Bruce Critchley makes me think I should chance the operation. Oh I don't know what to do, I’m a mess.”

More as it emerges.

 

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