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Oh, The Drama! Martin Kaymer Wins The 92nd PGA Championship

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Martin Kaymer Wins The 92nd PGA ChampionshipIn a finish that a Hollywood script writer could not even imagine Martin Kaymer of Germany won the 92nd PGA Championship in a three-hole playoff with American Bubba Watson – two players with styles of golf games and personalities on opposite ends of the spectrum. When all the drama was over – rulings, playoff, et al, all that was left for 25-year old Kaymer to win his 1st major championship was a two foot putt for bogey that he ran smoothly into the center of the cup. 

But the two-man playoff looked to have another participant, Dustin Johnson, before a ruling left him on the wrong end of two stroke penalty. It was a shocking situation that received a lot of criticism from fans who watched but Johnson himself knew that the blame fell on him; not the officials who made the call. “Yeah, I just thought I was on a piece of dirt that the crowd had trampled down. I never thought I was in a sand trap. It never once crossed my mind that I was in a bunker. Obviously I know the Rules of Golf, and I can't ground my club in a bunker, but that was just one situation I guess. Maybe I should have looked to the rule sheet a little harder,” he said referring to the well documented local rules that put great emphasis on the possibility of such a situation.

Even with the heartbreaking situation, Johnson can take solace in the fact that he has made the Ryder Cup team that will compete in Wales and was once again in contention at a major championship. “Yeah, I mean, you know, I hit some really good shots coming down the stretch, made some birdies to get a one-shot lead going into 18. Other than the unfortunate incident on 18, I played really well all day. I'm definitely happy with my play.”

Another man happy with his play was they pride of Bagdad, Florida himself, Bubba Watson. Watson made a birdie on the 1st hole of the three-hole aggregate playoff but a final hole double bogey derailed his chances to put the Wannamaker Trophy on his den shelf.  “It was a weird day today, obviously, with the finish that you saw. You know, I wasn't on anybody's radar. Nobody in this media center thought I had a chance this morning. Nobody talked about me probably this morning,” said Watson whose final round 68 was only bested by Phil Mickelson’s 67. “The weather gave me an opportunity to do it, kind of like Travelers, nobody expected me to win that, either. You know, I just played solid, just put my head down and tried to play as good of golf as I could and try to grind out a good finish, if not a win. And then when it worked out that I made some birdies and made some good pars, and I got a chance to go in a playoff.   It's very heartbreaking to hear about Dustin Johnson, that's upsetting. The guy's played great golf and he just made a mistake. I feel for him. That's very disheartening, and that's why this situation today was just weird. We sat in the locker room and didn't know what was going on, so the playoff was just weird, going into the playoff without him, it didn't seem right. But I made The Ryder Cup, so that's all I care about.”

For the man who did eventually hoist the Wannamaker, 5-time European Tour winner Martin Kaymer, it was his putter that made all the difference in leading him to the most important victory of his career so far. A clutch 15 foot putt for on the 18th hole of regulation play got him into the playoff but another magnificent stroke – a 15 footer for birdie on the 2nd playoff hole, put him even with Watson with one hole to play in the playoff. After taking one less stroke than Watson on the final test it was a shocked Kaymer who stoically accepted the polite applause of the crowd at Whistling Straits who clearly would have loved to see Watson, or even Johnson, as the ultimate winner. "I don't realize what happened," Kaymer said once the championship had been decided. "I just won my first major. I've got goose bumps just talking about it."

To the delight of golf fans everywhere the build up to the final major championship of the year was justified. Whistling Straits and the play of the golfers, including 97 of the top 100 players in the world, delivered a PGA Championship that will be talked about for many years to come – for so many reasons. You can’t ask for much more than that from a tournament that not too long ago had lost its lustre.

Clearly, its importance is not lost on anyone anymore. Well, maybe Martin Kaymer at first, but in time he will fully realize what he has accomplished in beating the world’s best on a Sunday afternoon in Wisconsin.

This report provided to GolfWRX.com by Flagstick Golf Magazine (www.flagstick.com)

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Pro golfer Hosung Choi has the most ridiculous golf swing you’ll ever see

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Professional golfer Hosung Choi, playing in the third round of the Kolon Korea Open at Woo Jeong Hills Country Club, has set the golf Internet on fire with his wildly entertaining golf swing. And while it may look ridiculous, he’s currently sitting at 8-under for the event through three rounds, only two shots back of the leader. It’s worth noting that the top two finishers in the Korea Open will earn a spot in the 2018 Open Championship at Carnoustie next month.

Enjoy the videos of his golf swing below!

Top-100 swing instructor and GolfWRX’s resident swing expert Tom Stckney has this to say about Choi’s golf swing: “The club goes up and away with a nice rerouting motion from the top into a perfect delivery and impact position. It’s obvious that this guy can play from those two positions, however, I’m not sure about the dismount. Nor can I even guess why he does it…I’m betting he was self-taught and made that move from day one. Great lesson to all the “golf swing” centric people playing today, why change it if it brings you to the dance?!?!”

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Marty Jertson, Ping’s Director of Product Development, qualified for the PGA Championship

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The top 20 professionals from the PGA Professional Championship–contested last weekend at Bayonet and Black Horse Golf Courses in Seaside, California–are heading to the PGA Championship later this year.

Perhaps you saw Ryan Vermeer, at 5 under, was the medalist. What you may not have seen however, is something particularly cool for golf equipment geeks: Ping’s Director of Product Development, Marty Jertson, qualified–and he did so in spectacular fashion: the 37-year-old birdied the last three holes to finish T9.

Not bad for an engineer!

Also noteworthy: Ping confirmed Jertson played the company’s yet-to-be announced i500 irons in his 3, 4, and 5-irons, which will reportedly be available mid-summer. Yes, they confirmed that the rumors are true; Ping’s new iron will be called i500.

Related: We did a podcast with Jertson at the PGA Show, we also interviewed him back in 2017.

 

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Reddit AMA alert: Anthony Taranto, Callaway’s wedge art maestro, on his favorite designs, WITB

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If you’ve been around GolfWRX for any period of time, you’ve seen Anthony Taranto’s work. The Callaway wedge specialist is tasked with designing some of the coolest wedge decorations in the game.

Taranto did a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) yesterday, and The Wedge Art Wizard (as he introduced himself) didn’t disappoint.

Here are a few highlights (edited for spelling)

Remoolg asked: How did you start working at Callaway and get into this specific position?

AT: Back in 1999 Callaway had a job fair for their new golf ball plant Mr. Callaway was opening. I made it though many layoffs and reorganization. I was good at building clubs and I was placed in the pro tour department about 12 years ago. About 4 1/2 years ago I discovered this technique for sandblasting art onto wedges and now here we are.

Loudshorts asked: What’s the most odd art request you’ve put on a wedge and what’s the most common?

AT: Most odd: Probably Michelle Wie’s Harry Potter-themed wedges

I didn’t know anything about Harry Potter at the time so I had to do some research. Accio birdies!
Most common would just be old fashioned stamping of players initials.

Bunny said: Billy Idol, never pictured him as a golfer. What kind of design did he want on his clubs?

AT: He asked for his logo, which is this cool crown with a lightning bolt:

Iamrobert_paulson asked: What wedges are in your bag? Can we see pics?

AT: I’m gaming MD4’s: 45° (46 bent to 45), 50°, 55° (54 bent to 55), and 60°. Design wise: Skull & Crossbones and lots of stars.

Dr. Troutman asked: What is your favorite custom set you’ve ever done?

AT: Putting me on the spot! It might be these that I just recently made. Figured out how to evolve the sand blasting technique and start doing layers. Really happy with how these came out:

You can check out the full AMA here.

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