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Phil Mickelson beats Tiger Woods in ‘The Match,’ takes home $9 million jackpot

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The golfing world was unsure of what to expect when Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods went head-to-head in Las Vegas this afternoon for $9 million, and with a small crowd following the two men and somewhat awkward banter between the two, the event had an eerie feel to it early on.

As for the golf, on the opening hole, Mickelson had nine feet for birdie to take the lead in the match and cost Woods $200k after the two had made a pre-match side bet that Mickelson would birdie the hole. But his putt didn’t drop, to the delight of Woods who while wearing a beaming smile declared “That hurts the pocket.”

However, his smile was short-lived, as the 14-time major champion failed to convert a short par putt on the second hole to allow Mickelson to draw first blood and go 1 up.

The 137-yard fifth hole delivered the next piece of action. A $100k closest-to-the-hole challenge initiated by Mickelson was agreed upon and won comfortably by Lefty, who stuffed his tee-shot in tight. However, Mickelson was unable to drain the putt and the hole was halved.

Woods birdied the par-5 seventh to level the match. Then, the two agreed on a $200k closest-to-the-hole contest at the par-3 eighth. Mickelson won the challenge and the hole after a Woods three-putt.

It was all halves until the two men reached the par-4 11th hole. Both players’ tee shots landed over the green. After Woods secured his birdie with a tidy chip, Mickelson was unable to counter, failing to get up and down, and the match was all tied up.

A sublime wedge shot on 12 set up the easiest of birdies for Woods and gave him a 1 up advantage with six holes to play. However, Mickelson’s mood picked up after winning a closest-to-the-hole challenge on the par-3 13th, costing Woods $300k. Mickelson also took the hole to square things up.

Woods then failed to get up and down on the par-4 15th, and his bogey resulted in him falling one behind Mickelson with just three holes remaining. But on 17, with his back firmly against the wall, Woods pulled a rabbit out of the hat, holing out from off the green to tie the match going down the 18th hole.

The two men parred the 18th and went back to the tee for a sudden-death playoff. After both found trouble on the first playoff hole, Woods had a nine-foot putt to win the match but missed on the low side.

A 93-yard “20th hole” was set up to decide affairs. Woods and Mickelson hit from a makeshift tee on the practice green, lofting their wedge approach shots to the 18th green. On the third occasion, after both recorded par twice, Woods had seven feet for birdie. He limply hit his putt, however, leaving Mickelson with just outside four feet for birdie, which he duly dispatched, bringing home with it the $9 million jackpot.

 

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Gianni is a freelance writer. He holds a Bachelor of Arts as well as a Diploma in Sports Journalism. He can be contacted at gmagliocco@outlook.com. Follow him on Twitter @giancarlomag

14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Roy

    Nov 24, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    On a side note, Vegas bookies were said to be up 8:95M over the weekend……

  2. Tom

    Nov 24, 2018 at 4:34 pm

    Fed Ex Cup full season bonus is $10 million….these two has beens play 18 holes for $9 million…..disgraceful!

  3. Bull Connor

    Nov 24, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    !!ekoj gnikcuF Jerry Cooney of golf’s great White Hope vs a Jack Johnson.

  4. Majduffer

    Nov 24, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    I might have paid to see it if it would have a skins game and they added 2 other players like rickie and justin. The old guard versus the new guard. Then all the short putts missed would have really been important. Secondly, not allowing spectators was a total disservice to their fans. I also found it ironic that the player’s sponsors didn’t step up and make it free to all the fans who buy their products. What a bunch of cheap skates and I will not be buying any of their products in the future.

  5. Steven Simeon

    Nov 24, 2018 at 10:52 am

    I watched the match, it was worth $ 20, I guess. I paid somewhat close attention, but I dont remember twin 69’s and Tiger making 6 birdies ?? I was sober too

  6. Under the roof

    Nov 24, 2018 at 8:22 am

    Far better entertainment than I thought it was going to be. Both we’re nervy and uncomfortable, which showed me they are human; welcome to match play.

  7. MD

    Nov 24, 2018 at 2:52 am

    They couldn’t have picked a worse course if they wanted it to be more flash bang entertaining.
    But it ended up more like the old Shell’s Wonderful World of Golf, where the matches were low-key, like this.
    Everybody expects fireworks and scores of 63s all the time now, but in these serious situations one on one on a tricky course that doesn’t give up too many easy putts, this is what happens.
    Even Hogan-Snead when they were in their 50’s for the Shell program ended up only a couple shots off Par and not very exciting in a fireworks way, but nonetheless mighty educational for the viewers, still.

    • Simms

      Nov 24, 2018 at 4:41 pm

      100% agree with you, maybe the Golf Channel could grab a few sponsors and do a series like “Shell’s) be 100% better then the waste of time instruction shows they have where even the same instructors go over the same shots with different ideas each and every week.

  8. Mad-Mex

    Nov 23, 2018 at 11:01 pm

    All I want to know is how many paid to see this,,,,,,,,,,,

  9. JP

    Nov 23, 2018 at 10:51 pm

    So they are both at the point of their careers that they are average. Yippee. Next time invite Cam Champ or Justin Thomas or……….

  10. kick in double

    Nov 23, 2018 at 10:47 pm

    Kinda wish there werent announcers for this and it was just them and their caddies doing all the talking. The little bit i saw sounded like the announcers were explaining golf to a 5 year old.

  11. Golfguy3

    Nov 23, 2018 at 9:03 pm

    I wish all golf tournaments were broadcast like this one. No commercials and the guys played at a good pace. I liked the side bets but you coykd tell both players were nervous. Also, its a nice course but not a $500.00 round.

    • Don

      Nov 24, 2018 at 11:09 am

      First, I mostly was glad I decided to watch it. But your comment about being no commercials? There were the several Capital One ones with Jackson and Barkley ad the repeated references to traj graphics broght to the event by Capital One and the constant references and logo re MGM betting.

      No apparent control of the mics in a control booth was a problem for me anyway as the sound from all miked players going all at the same time (including I thin Tiger’s loud sniffling especially on the front 9) made it hard to hear individual comments well. Besides the peanut gallery of Barclay and all that were speaking over them.
      I don’t get why the transmission (at least for me on Shaw in Canada) stopped after the shaking hands after the final putt and did stay on for any presentation or comments at same. Even with the extra holes, there was still time left for tye slotted 6 hours on PPV.

  12. Wes B

    Nov 23, 2018 at 8:53 pm

    I thought it was very entertaining. Neither guys seemed to play that well at all but its still Tiger and Phil. Loved it!

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Greg Norman: “If I had to do it all over again, I would go to one-length clubs”

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Greg Norman has never been a man to shy away from speaking his mind, and during Saturday’s Golf Channel broadcast of the QBE Shootout, the Australian declared that if he had the opportunity to begin his career again, he would do so with single-length irons.

Norman stressed how his experience while experimenting with Cobra King One Length irons led him to conclude that single-length irons are more beneficial than standard irons because “your spine angle stays the same” no matter what club you are using.

“Believe it or not, if I had to do it all over again as a 13 or 14-year-old, I would go to one-length clubs,” Norman said. “I actually had a set made for me when [Bryson DeChambeau] first came and joined, and I got it straight off the bat. When you think about it, my 4-iron and my 8-iron are the same length, but my ball flight was so good on all of them because your spine angle stays the same.”

The Australian went on to say that anyone looking to introduce their kid to the game of golf, should give them single-length irons to optimize their chances of success.

“I think parents now, for longevity, golf is a sport you can play your entire life, so if you look at that motion that [DeChambeau is] going through there, it’s such an effortless motion. He’s stacked up beautifully. At the end of the day, the motion is so simple through there. So the one-length golf club, in my humble opinion, give a kid at six, seven, eight…get him used to it and he’ll do well.”

Norman won 88 times in his career, including 20 wins on the PGA Tour and two major championship victories. Could the Shark have achieved even more if he had have used single-length irons during his career instead of standard irons?

Let us know what you think, GolfWRXers!

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Web.com Tour hopeful suffers heartbreaking finish to miss out on Tour status by one stroke

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With the careers of many players hanging in the balance at Web.com Tour Q-School, the agony of those who miss out matches the ecstasy of the few that make their way through the brutal process.

On Sunday, there was one particular man who suffered the agony of missing out more than others.

Patrick Sullivan was inside the top-40 and heading for his status on the Web.com Tour for 2019 before it all went wrong. Playing the back nine of Sunday’s final round, the 35-year old faced a birdie attempt on the 14th green but struck his ball off the green and into the water. Sullivan ended up making a costly double bogey on the hole and followed the error with another bogey on the 15th hole.

To his eternal credit, Sullivan showed incredible resolve. Needing to play his final three holes in four-under par, Sullivan managed to make a birdie and an eagle before heading to the final hole.

A three on 18 was a must, and Sullivan faced a nerve-jangling four-footer to claim his Web.com Tour status for next season. The putt, however, slid by, leaving him one shot outside of the magic number.

Golf can be a cruel sport at times.

Sullivan does, however, have conditional status for next year, meaning he will have the opportunity of playing events through Monday qualifiers.

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GolfWRX Morning 9: Louis king again | Q-School craziness

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By Ben Alberstadt (ben.alberstadt@golfwrx.com)

December 10, 2018

Good Monday morning, golf fans.
1. King again!
Louis Oosthuizen captured his home country’s open for his first win in three years.
  • Ryan Herrington writes…”Louis Oosthuizen was already the winner of a historic Open title, but on Sunday he claimed arguably a more meaningful one to the 36-year-old. With a closing 67 at Randpark Golf Club in Johannesburg, Oosthuizen posted a runaway six-stroke victory over France’s Romain Langasque at the South African Open, his home country’s oldest tournament.”
  • “I wish the family was here,” said a tearful Oosthuizen, ending a nearly three-year winless drought. “The crowd was great this whole week, it was nice to do it for them.”
  • “It was Oosthuizen’s eighth career European Tour triumph, four of which have come in events in South Africa. But this was the first time he’s won his country’s Open after playing in the event for the first time since a third-place finish in 2010.”
2. St. Simons boys triumph
Patton Kizzire and Brian Harman, both residents of St. Simons Island, joined forces to win the QBE Shootout.
  • PGATour.com’s Cameron Morfit …”We’re normally trying to get into each other’s heads,” Kizzire said after the St. Simons Island, Georgia duo shot a best-ball, final-round 61 in blustery weather to reach 30-under and win the unofficial QBE at Tiburón Golf Club. “And this week he was nice to me, which was kind of weird.”
  • Added Harman: “I was hoping I wasn’t going to throw him for a loop.”
  • “For the second straight year Graeme McDowell finished second, this time with a new partner, Emiliano Grillo. They made par on 18 to finish 29-under, one back.”
  • “Three teams shared third, two back: Charles Howell III and Luke List, who was 9-under on his own ball over the last nine holes as they shot 61; Kevin Na and Bryson DeChambeau (62); and Charley Hoffman and Gary Woodland (63), their highlight coming when Woodland aced the 202-yard 5th hole.”
3. A horrific stolen clubs story…with a happy ending
From our Gianni Magliocco…:”Web.com Tour Q-School is well known for being a gruelling process, and while 49 players graduated over the weekend, one man was forced to go to hell and back to do so.”
  • “Cody Blick sat three shots outside of the desired Top-40 heading into Sunday’s final round, and on waking up that morning to prepare for the biggest round of his life, the 25-year-old realized that his clubs had been stolen.”
  • “Blick took to social media immediately, desperately hoping that anyone could help him, offering $5k no questions asked should his clubs be returned.”
  • “Blick was unable to recover his clubs though, meaning he was forced to put together a mishmash of different clubs before Sunday’s final round. According to the Mackenzie Tour Twitter account, they consisted of the “Superintendent’s driver, pro shop’s wedges, random irons and a heavier than usual putter.”
  • “After all of that, Blick pulled off a miracle. The American fired a sensational round of nine-under par 63, which included birdies at his final three holes, to take him into the coveted Top-40.”
4. Walker: Q-School Medalist
PGATour.com Staff report...”With a tight leaderboard down the stretch at Final Stage of the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament, University of Virginia alum Danny Walker emerged from the pack to birdie his final three holes and claim medalist honors at 27-under at Whirlwind Golf Club. Coming from the fourth-to-last group, Walker posted an early 9-under 63 before waiting for his fate as the final groups finished. With the victory, Walker earns fully-exempt status on the Web.com Tour in 2019.”
  • “Players who finished top-40 (and ties) earned guaranteed starts next year. This year, the cutoff came at 18-under 270 with 49 players earning guaranteed starts.”
  • “I’m super excited right now – my goal was to come top-10 this week, so I wasn’t really thinking about winning,” Walker said. “But I’m excited about it now obviously and relieved to have the week done, it’s a stressful week for everybody so it feels good to play well.”
5. The Shark wishes he went single length!  
Here’s an interesting note (or maybe just a Cobra staffer hyping a product his sponsor has cornered the market on among major OEMs).
  • Golfweek’s Dan Kilbridge…”The equipment issue came up on air Saturday afternoon while Norman was watching Bryson DeChambeau. The 25-year-old has already picked up five PGA Tour wins using Cobra King One Length irons, and Norman said he wishes he could have put them in play when he first started out as an amateur.”
  • “Believe it or not, if I had to do it all over again as a 13 or 14-year-old, I would go to one-length clubs,” Norman said. “I actually had a set made for me when (DeChambeau) first came and joined Cobra Puma and I got it straight off the bat. When you think about it, my 4-iron and my 8-iron are the same length, but my ball flight was so good on all of them because your spine angle stays the same.”
  • “I truly do believe that,” Norman said. “I think parents now, for longevity, golf is a sport you can play your entire life, so if you look at that motion that (DeChambeau’s) going through there it’s such an effortless motion. He’s stacked up beautifully. At the end of the day, the motion is so simple through there. So the one-length golf club, in my humble opinion, give a kid at six, seven, eight … get him used to it and he’ll do well.”
6. Steph’s tourney to Lake Merced
Golf Channel’s Will Gray...”A new PGA Tour event in the Bay Area hosted by NBA superstar Steph Curry is now expected to debut next fall at Lake Merced Golf Club.”
  • “According to a San Francisco Chronicle report, the club’s membership voted “overwhelmingly” to approve an estimated $3.6 million in renovations that are viewed as a “prerequisite to holding the tournament.” The planned changes will reportedly be overseen by Rees Jones and could stretch the Daly City, Calfornia, course beyond 7300 yards.”
  • “Lake Merced has hosted an LPGA event four of the past five years, with Lydia Ko winning three times. It is slated to host the LPGA’s MediHeal Championship from May 2-5 next year. The Curry-hosted event is expected to take place in September as part of the fall portion of the 2019-20 season and likely close to the Safeway Open, which is annually played in Napa.”
7. LET in Limbo
Golfweek’s Alistair Tait…”The 2019 LET Qualifying School is scheduled Dec. 16-20 in Morocco. Once again, those players who earn one of the 25 cards have no idea how many tournaments they will play next year. The LET has yet to publish its 2019 schedule.
  • It cost $1,450 to enter this year’s Q-School. Imagine getting your dream job and having no idea where, when and if you’ll be working?”
  • “There were just 15 events on this year’s LET schedule. Two of those – the $3.25 million Ricoh Women’s British Open and $3.85 million Evian Championship – were majors and basically out of reach for most Q-School grads. The $1.5 million Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open is essentially an LPGA event and also is off-limits to most Q-School grads. In other words, those who earned cards were playing in low-purse events.”
  • “By low purses we’re talking between a low of $140,000 for the Jabra Ladies Open to $500,000 for the Hero Women’s Indian Open. The first four events on this year’s schedule were co-sanctioned with the Australian Ladies Professional Golf Tour. Two of those were worth just over $100,000. You don’t have to be a math genius to work out that traveling to, and accommodation in, Australia isn’t cheap. Even a top-10 finish in those events could leave players taking a loss on the week.”
8. Pining for the Q-School of yore?
According to the Forecaddie, some Tour vets are feeling a bit of nostalgia.
  • “For almost 50 years, the PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament was the coliseum for Sansabelt soldiers, where battle-scarred veterans and fresh-faced rookies fought it out over six days to earn their stripes. For every career launched at Q-School, many others crashed to earth. Stories from that make-or-break week are plentiful and almost always painful. Like Steve Haskins, a journeyman who entered the arena 14 times but never made it out with a Tour card.”
  • “Even those who survived the gauntlet have scar tissue. It’s been 35 years since Brad Faxon’s only trip to Q-School, but he can recall it with forensic detail still. Fall 1983, TPC Sawgrass, 108 holes with a cut after 72.”
  • “I shot 71 in the fourth round to move way up,” Faxon said. “Then rain and lightning came and they cancelled everybody’s scores. Next day I shot 76 and went from the top 10 to, like, 50th place.” He narrowly made the cut and secured a card that he kept for almost three decades.
9. Q-School heartbreak
Move over, Cody Blick…
  • Golf Digest’s Joel Beall…”Sullivan, a 35-year-old journeyman who missed 20 of 23 cuts on the Web.com Tour last season, looked to be in fine standing to retain Web status for 2019, in 23rd place heading into the final round of Q-School at Whirlwind G.C. in Chandler, Ariz. Unfortunately for Sullivan, on a day when the field went low, he hovered around par for 13 holes, and then had the bad fortune of finding the water on the 14th hole.”
  • Sullivan tweeted…”We’ve heard all the QSchool horror stories over the years. I was wondering if anyone had ever putted it into the water on the back nine to miss by one? If not…..dibs.”
  • “Sullivan ultimately made a double, and followed with a bogey on the 15th. And while he did mount a commendable charge, answering with a birdie on the 16th and eagle on the 17th, Sullivan missed a four-footer on the final hole.”

 

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