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Morning 9: Leadbetter calls out Ko family again | Olesen charged, suspended from Euro Tour | McIlroy roasts Kuchar

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By Ben Alberstadt (ben.alberstadt@golfwrx.com; @benalberstadt on Instagram)

August 7, 2019

Good Wednesday morning, golf fans. 
1. Leadbetter calls out Kos again
Scathing words from Lydia Ko’s former instructor, via Christopher Powers at Golf Digest. Ko missed the cut at the Women’s British Open, has won just once in the past three years, and has been through a number of coaches and caddies in the process.
  • “It really is a very sad situation to observe,” Leadbetter added. “The problem is when you start changing everything.
  • “As many changes as she’s made, not only coaching, caddies and equipment, and sports psychologists and trainers, she’s also changed her body type now.”
  • “Her parents have a lot to answer for-a case of unbelievable ignorance,” he said. “They tell her when to go to bed, what to eat, what to wear, when to practice and what to practice. And they expect her to win every tournament. … They need to let her go, let her fly, let her leave the nest so to speak and find her own way. If she can do that, we could see Lydia back.”
2. Tiger’s prep day at Liberty National 
Alex Myers ventured off the 27th floor of One World Trade to check out Tiger Woods’ Tuesday practice round in Jersey City.
  • A few of his observations…“Just moments after Woods arrived on the range, a horn blew signaling everyone to leave the premises. Yes, even 15-time major champs have to seek shelter.”
  • “An hour and 20 minutes later, Woods was back on the range to finally, actually begin preparation for the first of three FedEx Cup Playoff events played over three consecutive weeks.”
  • “After a 40-minute warmup, Woods went to the first tee with Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, and Harold Varner III.”
  • “…As for Woods’ play, it was solid outside of a lost ball in the high fescue left on the par-4 sixth. Just a guess, but a Tiger-sized gallery would have found it during a tournament day.”

Full piece.

3. Olesen charged, suspended from European Tour
BBC report…”Ryder Cup winner Thorbjorn Olesen will appear in court on 21 August after being charged with sexual assault, being drunk on an aircraft and common assault.”
  • “…A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said: “A man has been charged in connection with an incident on an inbound flight to Heathrow Airport on Monday, 29 July.”
  • “Jacob Thorbjorn Olesen, 29, of Redcliffe Road, Kensington and Chelsea, was charged by postal requisition on Thursday, 1 August with sexual assault, being drunk on an aircraft and common assault.”
  • “He is due to appear at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, 21 August.”

Full piece.

4. More tweaks for the scientist
PGATour.com’s Andrew Tursky on some adjustments (and a potential bombshell for amateur golfers?) ahead of the first FEC event.
  • “For DeChambeau, that meant a trip to Carlsbad, California — home of Cobra Golf’s headquarters – to work with Cobra’s R&D team on clubs that can be more beneficial for his game. While remaining mum on details, DeChambeau expressed that he was positive about what the group came up with; not only for himself, but for golfers worldwide.”
  • “We found some very interesting results that will be of future help to amateur golfers across the world,” DeChambeau said in a press conference.
  • “”We don’t have the full solution of it yet,” DeChambeau said. “We can’t just make a head right on the spot. It’s going to be a month before we can do things we need to do. There was a minor improvement with the tools we had at that point – not just minor, but pretty drastic — but it can even get better as time goes on. That time is necessary for me to keep learning and getting better.”
5. Woodland’s summer of stress
AP report…”So the smile that never left him Tuesday at Liberty National Golf Club had nothing to do with the $15 million prize at stake as the FedEx Cup playoffs begin. It was all about his twin daughters Maddox and Lennox born Thursday, making his best year in golf the greatest year of his life.”
  • “I feel 100 pounds lighter,” Woodland said as he walked off the course during a weather delay in a practice round Tuesday for The Northern Trust. “Obviously, I had a huge win and that was great. But it’s been stressful every week because every cart I see … ‘Are they coming to get me? Is Gabby going into labor?’ The last month has been stressful for both of us.”
6. The perils of expecting something different
Golf Digest’s Joel Beall…”Garcia’s litany of temper tantrums-ones seemingly reserved for grade-schoolers-have been met with increased fascination, self-righteousness and finger-wagging. Yet, entertaining as Garcia’s faux pas may be (to some), the aggregate of incidents-the latest a club throw at his caddie at Royal Portrush and a tee-box excavation in Memphis-raises a question: What is up with this cat?”
  • “After all, wasn’t Garcia a changed man, finding maturity in family, salvation in Augusta? This season, the consensus says, has been a digression to a persona Sergio seemingly had buried. Undeniably, there have been a number of missteps. But the only thing that’s fundamentally changed about Sergio-in this year, and all the years before it-is our perception, and tolerance, of him.”
7. Who’s up for a little Tiger or Jack debate? 
For The Win’s Andy Nesbitt with a vote for TW…
“But there’s been nobody as good as Tiger. Ever…And it really isn’t even close.”
  • “Tiger has excelled in an individual sport during a time when everything he did was examined, celebrated, and critiqued at levels that Nicklaus never even came close to having to deal with.”
  • “Tiger’s run through the 2000s was must-see TV and man did he know how to put on a show and rise to the occasion – often in dramatic fashion – when the whole world was watching.”
  • “He took the PGA Tour to a whole new level and continues to make many golfers absolutely filthy rich because of all the money Tiger brought into the game.”
  • “Before Tiger, winners would often get $180,000 for a win. Now most tournaments are over a million bucks, with majors and the Players’ going over two million bucks.”
8. Roasted! 
Golf Channel’s Jason Crook...”The latest burn came via Rory McIlroy on Tuesday during the Wyndham Rewards ceremony, where an extra $10 million in bonus money was handed out to players.”
  • “While Kuchar was explaining that McIlroy had cost him $300,000 by finishing just two points ahead of him in the season-long race, the four-time major champ quickly interjected, “And we all know what money means to him.”
9. Shibuno for team Japan?
Golf Channel’s Nick Menta...:”Shibuno is up to 14th in the Rolex Rankings, making her the second highest Japanese player in the world, behind 10th-ranked Nasa Hataoka.”
  • “Although there’s still 11 months to go before the qualification period for the women’s event closes on June 29, 2020, Shibuno is currently in line to represent the host country in Tokyo next year.”
  • “Ranked 563rd at the end of 2018, the 20-year-old made a quick ascent with a pair of victories on the JLPGA, vaulting all the way to 46th in just seven months…She jumped up 32 more spots with her win at Woburn, leapfrogging Mamiko Higa and Ai Suzuki to move into Japan’s second Olympic spot.”

 

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Donkeys

    Aug 10, 2019 at 10:57 pm

    Jackass.

  2. Jim

    Aug 8, 2019 at 9:24 am

    Matt Kuchar sucks.

    • Iknowdonkeys

      Aug 8, 2019 at 9:27 am

      Kuchar is a big donkey with a donkey face.

    • BoycottBridgestoneBalls

      Aug 8, 2019 at 1:13 pm

      Yes, he does. I stopped buying Bridgestone balls because he’s such a jerk.

      • BigDonkey

        Aug 10, 2019 at 11:57 am

        That’s hilarious. He does resemble a donkey.

    • Nick

      Aug 10, 2019 at 12:00 pm

      AKA…JACKASS – hee haw…

  3. Oh oYouDidnt

    Aug 7, 2019 at 4:58 pm

    Damn, Rory.

    • JThunder

      Aug 7, 2019 at 9:39 pm

      “Rory cost me $300,000…”

      Yeah, Matt, I’m sure the golfing public really cares about your 1% problems. The average U.S. household is lucky to make that much in 6 years of full-time, year-long work.

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The DailyWRX (9/20/2020)

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LOL!

View this post on Instagram

Yes that’s a 9 iron in my pants Via: @ziregolf

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Our national champion…

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A week our champion will never forget!

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This was pretty cool…

It is brilliant…

I can’t…

DM @johnny_wunder

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Morning 9: Victory, validation, and what’s next for Bryson | Science and sweat | Azinger’s remark | Rory’s take

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1. Bryson bests Winged Foot 
Our Ron Montesano…“DeChambeau balanced strategy and sinew to perfection, decoding the challenges and opportunities offered by the West Course at Winged Foot, and he claimed his first major title just four days after his 27th birthday.”
  • “For nine holes on Sunday, DeChambeau was in a battle with pairing competitor Matthew Wolff. First #BigBangTheory, and then #RipDog, posted eagle at the par-five 9th, thanks to identical driver-pitching wedge combos. They went to the back nine at 5 under and 4 under, respectively. At 10, Wolff’s iron turned over just enough to miss the green and leave him the most awkward of stances. He made bogey, and the lead was doubled. The eagle at nine turned out to be Wolff’s only hole below par all day, and he would drop three more shots on the way in. Wolff finished the week at even-par, a number that many projected to win after Friday’s round.”
  • “DeChambeau simply gave no openings to anyone on this final day. His final birdie came at the 11th after his approach failed to release and finished on the fringe. Undeterred, he putted from the fairway, as he had all week, and the sphere found the bottom of the tin can. DeChambeau didn’t hit many fairways this week, but he didn’t need to. Clubhead speed and short approach shots conquered the rough, and the Calixan (a blend of Californian and Texan) played the course as if it were just another Fortnite stream on Twitch.”

Full piece.

2. For Bryson (and potentially golf), this is just the beginning…
From Golf Channel’s Ryan Lavner’s superb piece…“Though he’s a polarizing figure, though he’s memed and mocked, DeChambeau is also easy to admire. Greatness is hard work, and he puts in the time. Early in the morning, late at night, he finds salvation on the range.”
  • “He sacrifices everything for this game,” Tucker [BAD’s caddie] said. “All he’s done his whole life is try to be the best. They tell you, ‘Oh, you can do anything.’ But what they don’t tell you is you have to sacrifice everything to be great.”
  • “So, hey, tip your Hogan cap: DeChambeau set an ambitious goal and achieved it. He led the Tour in driving distance (322.1 yards) this past season and gained more than a stroke per round on the field off the tee, tops on Tour. He won a tournament, contended in several others and positioned himself to win the first two majors of 2020 (after entering the year with no major finish better than 15th) despite setups that were supposed to discourage his aerial attack. “It’s definitely validating,” he said.”
3. Wolff comes up short
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…“Wolff began the final round at the U.S. Open with a two-stroke lead over Bryson DeChambeau and despite a rough start he was still just a shot off the lead when the final group made the turn. That’s when things went sideways.”
  • “Was it the break on 10 when I was standing in the bunker or like the not-left bounce on 12, and then the second shot that got pin high on 12 and then spun back down the slope?” said Wolff, who closed with a 75 and finished in second place and six strokes behind DeChambeau. “I mean, it’s just bad breaks. Like I said, you can’t do anything about it, and it just wasn’t meant to be.”
  • “Following an eagle at the ninth, Wolff bogeyed Nos. 10 and 14, and doubled the 16th, on his way to his worst round of the week. Still, it was his second consecutive top-10 finish in a major championship and a valuable chance to learn how to deal with the pressure that comes with playing for major title.”
4. Lynch: Toil and intellect
Golfweek’s Eamon Lynch filed his perspective piece on BAD’s victory…A morsel “In adopting a scientific approach to every aspect of his game, DeChambeau expects his carefully (some might say laboriously) calculated input to deliver a predictable output, which is an awfully high happiness bar to set in a sport that is hostage to the vagaries of chance, bounce and weather. Such a mindset would seem to guarantee frustration, and frustration is the very stress fracture that the U.S. Open is designed to locate, from which it will then prise a man open until it exposes every other weakness he didn’t think he had.”
  • “But that kind of U.S. Open is now a relic of a bygone era, one when courses were characters in the narrative and none evoked more fear than Winged Foot. Strategy is now dictated not by course architects but by player preference. The main peril DeChambeau faced at Winged Foot would come from a potential swing screw-up, not the USGA’s course set-up. Limit the former and the latter doesn’t matter. He did, and it didn’t.”
5. More 48-inch driver discussion
Per Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…“Length is going to be a big advantage there. I know that for a fact,” DeChambeau said. “I’m going to try and prepare by testing a couple things with the driver.”
  • “DeChambeau’s pre-Masters prep will include continuing to experiment with a 48-inch driver shaft. After averaging 336.3 yards off the tee at Winged Foot, DeChambeau doesn’t plan on stopping in his quest for distance.”
  • “We’re going to be messing with some head designs and do some amazing with things with Cobra to make it feasible to hit these drives maybe 360, 370 [yards],” he said. “Maybe even farther. I don’t know.”
6. Rory on Bryson 
Golf Channel’s Will Gray…”Bryson DeChambeau’s six-shot victory at the U.S. Open left many in the game shaking their heads and trying to make sense of a dominant performance. Included in that group was former U.S. Open champion Rory McIlroy.”
  • …”I don’t really know what to say because that’s just the complete opposite of what you think a U.S. Open champion does. Look, he’s found a way to do it,” McIlroy said. “It’s not the way I saw this golf course being played, or this tournament being played. It’s kind of hard to really wrap my head around it.”
  • ….”I think it’s brilliant, but I think he’s taken advantage of where the game is at the minute,” McIlroy said. “Look, again, whether that’s good or bad, but it’s just the way it is. With the way he approaches it, with the arm-lock putting, with everything, it’s just where the game’s at right now. I’m not saying that’s right or wrong. He’s just taking advantage of what we have right now.”
7. “Validation on steroids”
Golfweek’s Todd Kelly…“Validation on steroids.”…”NBC analyst Paul Azinger uttered those words on Sunday during the final round of the U.S. Open.”
  • …”DeChambeau has been dogged by the steroid accusations. Putting on all that bulk and bragging about all those protein shakes will do it, it seems. But the insinuations are unfair nonetheless.”
  • “Azinger explained to Golfweek by text message Sunday night that his words were taken out of context.”
  • “If anyone was thinking I was implying that Bryson was on steroids they completely misinterpreted that,” he said. “They get tested twice a week for crying out loud. Bad choice of words. He took a lot of (bleep) and validated everything he’s done. If that needs cleaning up then the world has gone to hell.”
8. Meanwhile, on other tours…
Jim Furyk won on the Champions Tour…AP report...”Jim Furyk joined Arnold Palmer and Bruce Fleisher as the only players to win their first two PGA Tour Champions starts, beating Jerry Kelly with a birdie on the first hole of a playoff in the Pure Insurance Championship.”
  • “Furyk and Kelly both laid up on the par-5 18th in the playoff, with Kelly hitting his approach to 10 feet and Furyk following with a 90-yard wedge to 3 feet. Furyk holed his birdie try after Kelly pulled his attempt.”
  • “The 50-year-old Furyk closed with a 5-under 67 – a day after losing the lead to Ernie Els with a second-round 73 – to match Kelly at 12-under 204. Playing three groups ahead of Furyk and four in front of Els, Kelly birdied the 18th for a 65.”
And on the LPGA Tour…AP report…”Georgia Hall won the Cambia Portland Classic on Sunday for her first LPGA Tour victory in the United States, beating Ashleigh Buhai with a par on the second hole of a playoff.”
  • “Hall won after falling into a tie with a bogey on the part-4 18th in regulation. The 24-year-old Englishwoman, the 2018 Women’s British Open champion, matched Buhai with a par on 18 on the first extra hole and won on the par-4 first at Columbia Edgewater.”
9. Bryson’s winning WITB
Driver: Cobra King SpeedZone (7.5 degrees @5.5)
Shaft: LA Golf BAD Prototype 60 TX  
3-wood: Cobra King SZ Tour (14.5 @11.5 degrees)
Shaft: LA Golf BAD Prototype 70 TX  
3-wood: Cobra King SZ Tour (14.5 degrees @13.5)
Shaft: LA Golf BAD Prototype 80 TX  
Irons: Cobra King SZ One Length (4, 5), Cobra King Forged Tour One Length (6-PW)
Shafts: LA Golf Rebar Proto  
Wedges: Artisan Prototype (50 @47, 55 @52, 60 @58)
Shafts: LA Golf Rebar Proto shaft
Putter: SIK Prototype
Ball: Bridgestone Tour B X
Grips: Jumbo Max Tour
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DeChambeau holds straight to claim U.S. Open title

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Although the rounds came out of order, let the record show that Bryson DeChambeau did record a 70, a 69, a 68, and, on the most important of days, a Sunday 67. He was the only player to shoot under par on day four, and the only player to finish under par for the week.

His six-shot victory was not a dominant one, but it was the next best thing: impressive. DeChambeau balanced strategy and sinew to perfection, decoding the challenges and opportunities offered by the West Course at Winged Foot, and he claimed his first major title just four days after his 27th birthday.

For nine holes on Sunday, DeChambeau was in a battle with pairing competitor Matthew Wolff. First #BigBangTheory, and then #RipDog, posted eagle at the par-five 9th, thanks to identical driver-pitching wedge combos. They went to the back nine at 5 under and 4 under, respectively. At 10, Wolff’s iron turned over just enough to miss the green and leave him the most awkward of stances. He made bogey, and the lead was doubled. The eagle at nine turned out to be Wolff’s only hole below par all day, and he would drop three more shots on the way in. Wolff finished the week at even-par, a number that many projected to win after Friday’s round.

DeChambeau simply gave no openings to anyone on this final day. His final birdie came at the 11th after his approach failed to release and finished on the fringe. Undeterred, he putted from the fairway, as he had all week, and the sphere found the bottom of the tin can. DeChambeau didn’t hit many fairways this week, but he didn’t need to. Clubhead speed and short approach shots conquered the rough, and the Calixan (a blend of Californian and Texan) played the course as if it were just another Fortnite stream on Twitch (where you might find him tonight).

The two, non-player topics to hold our attention all week are absence of fans and distance gains. Would the oohs and ahhhs, and possible interruptions, of galleries have impacted this week’s result? No question. Some golfers feed off the electricity, while others wilt. No doubt a chorus of “You da man” and “Big Bang Theory” would have caused some influence, at some juncture.

Next, what about distance? Remember 1997, when Augusta did its level best to Tiger-proof the golf course? DeChambeau is only 73 inches tall. What happens when a 75- or an 80-inch golfer adds the mass that he did? All facets of the distance conversation amount to one of many discussions to be had. Anyone see how well he putted? How well he chipped and pitched? How well he decoded slopes of greens? The puzzle was there for the taking, and one golfer solved it.

Cheers, kudos, Hogan hats off to the champion!

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