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Steve Stricker Wins Barclays

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Tiger Woods may not have been in the Barclays field, but what it lacked in star power, it more than made up for with exciting final round play as Steve Stricker birdied four of the final five holes to win the Baraclays and take the initial lead in the first leg of the FedEx Cup playoffs.

The past six and a half years have not been easy for Steve Stricker. Nor has the past year. After finding himself poised to win both the U.S. Open and Open Championships, only to be betrayed in the final round as pressure began to build. Yet Sunday would be Stricker’s day alone to shine. "I’ve put in a lot of hard work at the end of the 2005 season. I went back to TOUR School and I think that was a big wake-up call. I put a lot of effort there and I think I missed my TOUR card there by a couple of shots. I just worked real hard at it at the end of the 2005 season. I came out with I think kind of a fresher attitude and I caught on to many things during the winter in Wisconsin hitting a lot of balls," said Stricker.

Much like his road back to contention on the PGA Tour, Stricker’s victory on Sunday was an uphill battle the entire way. The goal of the FedEx Cup was to bring the best players on the PGA Tour in contention for a series of weeks, and it appears they did just that. On the back nine of the final round, ten players were within three strokes of the lead including Phil Mickelson, Geoff Ogilvy, and Ernie Els. However, towards the end, it was clear the tournament would come down to the final pairing of K.J. Choi and Steve Stricker.

K.J. Choi who is having the best year of his career began the round in an uncharacteristic fashion, bogeying three holes before finally making his first birdie on the ninth which seemed to turn the momentum in his favor. After collection two more birdies on 10 and 12, Stricker began wondering if he would be able to stop Choi’s charge, "I thought, here he goes. I was in contention there at AT&T and he holed it out of the bunker at 17. I thought, ‘Well, here he goes.’ He made a bomb and then he made one earlier, too. You know, I just had to pay attention to myself and I didn’t really worry about what he was doing. I just tried to stay focused on what I was doing and trying to do."

It would have been the perfect time for Stricker to fold, for the pressure to overcome him. Clearly it came close to doing just that. Bogies on 10 and 13 after wayward drives brought Choi and Stricker very close. Then Stricker erupted with four birdies on the last five holes: "You know what, I felt good. I was thinking that after birdying 16, I’m like, you know, I finally — you know, I got deeper into the round having a chance to win. Those other tournaments, it kind of — piddled it away there mid-round. So I felt like, you know what, I’m deep into the round; anything can happen."

Perhaps Stricker’s success at the Barclays was because of, and not in spite of his earlier disappointments this year. Despite the difficulties he experienced Stricker took the positives from the previous tournaments and used them to fuel his victory on Sunday. He said, "I didn’t see them as disappointments. I think that’s the first thing. I didn’t see those as a negative deal. I thought that was another building block in what I was doing. Even though I didn’t finish them off, you know, the way you’re supposed to, I still felt like those were positive things for me. I was moving in the right direction."

FedEx Cup Standings 
Pos Player Points
1 Steve Stricker 104,950
2 K.J. Choi 102,900
3 Rory Sabattini  100,650
4  Tiger Woods  100,000
5 Phil Mickelson  99,613
6  Vijay Singh  99,000
7 Jim Furyk  98,850
8  Zach Johnson  97,350
9 Adam Scott  97150

 

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GolfWRX Spotlight: Golf Drawn’s custom golf art

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I recently converted an extra bedroom in my house into a home office (golf-themed, of course). In my search for stuff to put up on the walls, I came across a company that was doing something different. They had a booth at this year’s PGA Show showing off some of their unique work, and when I dug in a bit more, I realized it was a really innovative product for the golf community. So, I reached out to the people at Golf Drawn to see if they could help me create a piece for my office.

Golf Drawn is a custom design and illustration service that specializes in creating original, hand-drawn course routing designs of your favorite club. Any club. That’s the best part. They can draw any course in the world using the wonders of satellite imaging.

Goat Hill Park

Brooklawn on Wood Canvas

Streamsong

“We began just as we still do now, by drawing up folks’ home tracks,” said Anthony Malky, Owner and Creative Director at Golf Drawn. “Whether it was a par three, municipal course, top-100, or whatever. Our whole deal was that we would draw any course….and we still do. There’s yet to be one that we couldn’t execute.”

If you’ve spent any time looking around for golf art or memorabilia, you realize how big a deal that actually is. The top-100 courses get all the love. Golf Drawn is filling a void out there and providing custom art focused on your favorite local course.

“We receive the course request from you and get to work on creating the design,” said Malky, “Once the design is complete, we send you proofs, and then you choose background color, labeling, frame and any additions.”

Popular additions to the framed prints include images of the scorecard table, compass to show direction of the course routing, alternative club logos, etc…

And Golf Drawn can then put that routing design or logo on a tee-shirt, sticker or other items if you like as well. Every new design requires a one-time design fee to get the work completed. But once that design is done, it is free to put on any framed print or tee in the future for anyone. Tee-shirts are becoming a rather popular item on the website.

If a course has been renovated or simply no longer exists, Golf Drawn has worked directly from old photos or original course plans to recreate the old track you remember. And, of course, Golf Drawn can do the famous courses as well. It’s a great way to commemorate a favorite round, hole in one, or once in a lifetime score.

My local club is Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas. They already had a design drawn of Colonial, so it wasn’t hard to customize what I wanted and finish the order. I added the columns logo to the top left corner and script location on the bottom right.

So how did this all begin? Anthony Malky grew up in Oakmont, Pennsylvania. He caddied at Oakmont Country Club for over a decade…and even got to play the course on some Mondays. He loves golf, just like we all do. And he started drawing courses as a hobby.

“I began drawing up the clubs that meant a lot to me,” Malky said. “After some time, at the urging of others I made an Instagram. I had a ton of course designs done and figured might as well post them for folks. From there, the Instagram took off, that turned into a website…then the custom orders started coming.”

Fast forward a couple of years, and Golf Drawn now has an entire wholesale catalog of unique products, over 250+ club accounts, and products stocked in shops around the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada. That is pretty impressive for a business that does everything in-house with a fully customizable product. And keeping prices low has always been a goal for Malky, as he remembers a time when he wanted to buy golf art himself but found everything to be overpriced and low quality.

Sticker Variety Pack

“We’ve tried to keep our prices, minimums at wholesale, all low and cost effective,” Malky said.  “That was part of the initial start too, allowing people to get their course drawn up, framed, etc. for a price that anyone could pay. Not some outlandish design fee or commission type setup.”

Prices per print with framing included

The supply is working hard to keep up with the demand. Golf Drawn is still a small operation and Malky does all of the designs himself. There is a team that helps with operations and a few sales reps across the country, but the business definitely remains small. That is intentional. Malky believes that allows Golf Drawn to offer a personal, high-level service to each individual customer. And it allows the company to remain focused on the reason they got started in the first place.

“It’s always been about shedding light on and propping up courses and places that otherwise wouldn’t be,” Malky said.  Giving attention to and making that local municipal course look as good as a top-10 track. Getting the par-3 course by your house designed, framed and up on a wall, highlighted in a way that many people have only seen the big courses like Pebble, Pinehurst, Oakmont. It’s always been about highlighting the places and the memories that mean so much to people.”

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Report: 2020 Open Championship set to be cancelled; R&A releases statement in response: “continuing to work through options”

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This year’s Open Championship will be cancelled outright by the R&A due to the Coronavirus pandemic, according to a report from Golf Digest.

Per the report, an unnamed source has divulged to the publication that the championship will next take place in 2021 with St. Andrews hosting the event. Royal St. Georges, due to host the 2020 Open Championship, would instead host the 2024 edition.

According to Golf Digest’s source, insurance has played a pivotal role in the decision making. As with Wimbledon, the Open Championship has an insurance policy that protects itself against a global pandemic if the event is cancelled by a specific date.

On Wednesday, the R&A officially announced that the 41st Curtis Cup would be played in 2021 while the organization also moved the British Amateur and British Women’s Amateur from June to August.

Though unconfirmed, this would mark the first major championship of 2020 to be cancelled outright, with the Masters and PGA Championship having been officially postponed.

*UPDATE*

On Thursday morning, in light of the speculation surrounding this year’s Open Championship, Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, released a statement where he said the R&A are “continuing to work through our options for The Open this year.”

“We are continuing to work through our options for The Open this year, including postponement. Due to a range of external factors, that process is taking some time to resolve. We are well aware of the importance of being able to give clear guidance to fans, players and everyone involved and are working to resolve this as soon as we can. We will give a further update as soon as we are in a position to do so and thank everyone for their support and understanding in this challenging situation.”

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Report: Woods-Mickelson Part 2 likely to happen in May and will feature two other sporting superstars

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Earlier this week, Phil Mickelson teased “The Match” Part 2 on his social media, and according to a report from CNBC the exhibition, though unconfirmed, is likely to take place in May and will include both Tom Brady and Peyton Manning.

On Monday evening, golf journalist Robert Lusetich stated that the potential “The Match” Part 2 would likely involve NFL legends, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning in a two on two contest.

Now per CNBC’s report, who claim that “a person familiar with the negotiations” confirmed the story to them, the contest is organized by AT&T’s WarnerMedia and the PGA Tour, and would likely take place in May with the proceeds going towards coronavirus relief charities.

The report also claims the event would likely not be a pay-per-view contest, with plans also in place to feature big names throughout the PGA, NFL, and National Basketball Association.

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