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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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Viral star, Hosung Choi, set for second start on the PGA Tour

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Hosung Choi, the man who has become a viral internet star due to his unique golf swing, made his PGA Tour debut at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am earlier this year, and the South Korean is set to make his second start this summer, after accepting a sponsors exemption to play the John Deere Classic.

Choi missed the cut on his debut at Pebble Beach, firing rounds of 72-75-77 while playing alongside the likes of Jerry Kelly and Aaron Rodgers.

The 45-year-old won the 2018 Casio World Open at the back end of last year but has been quiet on the golf course in 2019. Besides his missed cut at the AT&T Pebble Beach, Choi has only made two other appearances, missing the cut at the Kenya Open and finishing T12 at the Singapore Open.

Those who have bought tickets for this year’s John Deere Classic in July can look forward to all of Choi’s beautiful eccentricities.

 

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Morning 9: Nelly! | Ogilvy on Rules changes | Phelps on watching Tiger | Nantz: “Best event I’ve covered”

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

April 18, 2019

Good Thursday morning, golf fans.
1. Meanwhile, on the LPGA Tour…
…some actual golf action, to begin…
AP Report on round one of the Lotte Championship…
  • “Nelly Korda took advantage when Hawaii’s tough trade winds took a break.”
  • Korda rolled in the last of her nine birdies at the 18th in a bogey-free round of 63 Wednesday for a one-shot lead after the opening round of the Lotte Championship at Ko Olina Golf Club.
  • “I got here Saturday and I swear I couldn’t even walk because it was so windy,” said Korda, who is making her Lotte debut. “But I like the place. Everyone is really friendly and it just feels good to be here.”

Full piece.

2. Ogilvy on Rules changes
…the always interesting, abundantly informed Australian sounds off…
Writing for Golf Australia…
  • All of which brought me immediately back to the notion that the idea of simplifying rules almost automatically makes them more complicated. That it is what almost always happens when a committee decides something. I actually have some experience in that area, when I was on the PGA Tour Player Advisory Council…”
  • “…There were so many contingencies because a committee was involved. And it seems to me the same thing has happened with this ball-dropping thing. Nobody in the world now knows how to drop the ball properly. So we have a more complex situation than we had on December 31, 2018.”
  • “But it should be so simple. All we have to do is make it easy for a player to get the ball from hand to ground so that the game can continue. It’s that straightforward. But now we have a situation where you have to stand a certain way – you can’t bend your knees – and you have to drop from this exact height; not too low or high. The simplest thing in the world is now complicated.”
Also notable: this statement...”I have to think 99 percent of golfers have never consulted the rulebook on that one and things have been fine as far as I can see. This is really just a pro golf issue. So what is the point in foisting it on everyone?”
3. Phelps on watching Tiger
…how one GOAT got in prime position to watch another…
Tyler Lauletta at Business Insider…
  • On Wednesday, Phelps spoke with NBC Sports about how he wound up at the Masters in the first place, explaining that it had always been a dream of his to attend the tournament, and him being there for Woods’ big comeback win was more luck than anything.
  • “A mutual friend is a member,” Phelps said, explaining how he got his invite to one of the most difficult tickets in sports. “A buddy of mine called me Monday before the Masters. ‘I have a ticket? Do you want to go? I have a plane. Do you want to go?’ I was like, awesome, I’m going to the Masters for the first time.”
  • “As to how Phelps fell into front row seats to watch Woods tee off at No. 16, he says it came down to a helpful strangers that got to the tournament early on Sunday.”
  • “We started walking around the course and ran into a couple of nice people who had gotten to the gate early, at 3:30 a.m,” Phelps said. “They said, if you ever want to come back and sit on 16 with us, we have a couple of chairs. We got lucky, met a super nice guy working there that had some seats set up in some primo spots that we just had some pretty amazing access to.”
4. Even Stevie watched!
…tuning in for his former boss…
TVNZ report…
  • “Writing for Australian outlet the Player’s Voice, Williams says he now concentrated on playing golf rather than watching – until Monday morning earlier this week.”
  • “…I try to keep up with the news and will read about golf – but I just don’t watch it. Ever.
  • “Except for last Monday.”
  • “Fourteen years! It’s almost impossible to believe. And it had been 11 years since his last major – the US Open at Torrey Pines – which he had no right to win thanks to his torn cruciate ligament and fractured tibia.
  • “But that’s Tiger Woods – he does things no-one else could dream of doing.”

 

5. OWGR points for the Tour Championship
…two sets of books…
Doug Ferguson writes...”The PGA Tour will continue to keep a traditional score, even if it won’t be published, so that world ranking points can be awarded.”
  • “The Official World Golf Ranking board met last week at the Masters and approved a PGA Tour proposal that awards full ranking points based on where players would have finished without the staggered start.”
  • “The No. 1 seed in the FedEx Cup starts the tournament at 10 under, with the No. 2 seed at 8 under, and then 7 under, 6 under and 5 under. The next five players start at 4 under, all the way down until Nos. 26 through 30 begin at even par.”
6. “Best event I’ve ever covered”
…says Jim Nantz regarding the 2019 Masters…
The Washington Post’s Ben Strauss quoting Nantz…
  • “I’ve done 34 Final Fours, had Super Bowls, Peyton [Manning’s] farewell. It’s been 48 hours since it ended, and I’d say it’s going to feel about the same 10 years from now,” said Nantz, who has already called this year’s Super Bowl and Final Four in addition to the Masters since February. “It’s the best event I’ve ever covered. And I feel very fortunate to have been in that spot.”
7. DeChambeau’s grip change
…much lighter, but still Jumbo…
Andrew Tursky at PGATour.com on the pre-Masters overhaul…
  • “After a 14-hour range session in Dallas the week before the Masters, Dechambeau made a 75-gram reduction in his oversized JumboMax grip weights in his Cobra clubs. His new grips, made from a different lightweight compound, now measure just more than 50 grams, considered to be a “normal” weight by industry standards, despite their relatively massive size. He also changed from True Temper Dynamic Gold X7 shafts – extremely heavy and stiff iron shafts – to Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shafts, which flex more than his previous gamer shafts.”
  • “Ever since he came on TOUR, DeChambeau used JumboMax grips on his clubs that measured about 125 grams per grip. He now works on his equipment with Cobra’s TOUR Operations Manager Ben Schomin, who says Dechambeau has improved his wedge play since first coming out on TOUR, but lately DeChambeau had struggled to find consistency with the flight of his wedges. The main issues were that spin was inconsistent and they tended to fly too high. For his part, Schomin built him wedges that used weld beads on the heel to help with face closure. While Schomin says it helped, DeChambeau — currently T105 in Strokes Gained: Around the Greens — wasn’t satisfied with his wedge play.”
  • “Schomin and DeChambeau, chasing consistency with the wedges, decided to begin testing different variables. As it turned out, DeChambeau liked the feel of a 50-gram grip, versus his old 125-gram grips, and the new build allowed DeChambeau to flight the wedges lower, and gain spin and launch consistency.”
8. An interesting note on Masters coverage
…how did Molinari set himself up for his water-destined third shot at the 15th?…
Golf Digest’s Alex Myers…
  • “Thanks as always to ClassicTVsports.com for charting all the shots televised during the final round of a major. The site confirmed what I believed to be true while being in and out of the Augusta National media center on Sunday: Molinari’s second shot on No. 15 never made it on TV.”
  • “Even after his disastrous double bogey on No. 12, Molinari arrived at the Augusta’s final par 5 tied for the lead with Woods, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, and Xander Schauffele. So why wasn’t his second shot shown? Well, it was just a layup after a poor drive, but that punchout from the right pine straw proved to be pivotal. It wound up running through the fairway and into the left rough. It should be noted you can see the shot on the Masters digital platforms, which, remarkably, attempted to show every shot from the tournament.”
  • “Although Molinari only had 79 yards for his third, which was shown live, his angle was so extreme that his golf ball caught a pine tree and dropped into the pond guarding the green. A surprised Molinari, who had just one bogey through the first 60 holes of the tournament, never recovered from his second double bogey in four holes. Meanwhile, Woods hit two great shots on the hole to find the green. And two putts later he had the solo lead for the first time all week, a lead he would not relinquish.”
9. Ho Sung mania is coming to the John Deere Classic
…the fisherman’s swing returneth to the PGA Tour…
The tournament announced Chou has been handed a sponsors exemption to the July tournament.
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Meteorologist received death threats for interrupting Masters coverage during most-watched morning golf round of all time

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Tornados brewing in the Georgia area meant an earlier start than usual for the final round of the Masters, and one CBS46 meteorologist was to receive death threats for interrupting coverage of the event to update residents in the area of the conditions.

Ella Dorsey took to Twitter on Sunday to report not just the vile abuse she was receiving, but also the importance of the work she was doing which cut into local Masters coverage.

Per The Weather Channel who spoke to local experts, who while being prepared for the backlash in interrupting the coverage to warn residents, were stunned by the level of abuse of some. On the subject, station news director Steve Doerr said

“The venom around this was insane, even by social media standards.”

CBS released its viewing figures for Sunday’s morning round, with an average of 10.8 million viewers tuning in to watch Tiger Woods claim his fifth green jacket. That total bested the 8.56 million number, according to Nielsen data, from the 2000 Open Championship which previously held the morning record.

According to CBS, the broadcasts viewership peaked between 2.15 and 2.30 ET with 18.3 million tuning in.

 

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