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Morning 9: McIlroy questions Euro pros who stayed home | Tour tests COVID-19 free again | Diversity in golf | Does Rory have a “Sunday problem?”

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By Ben Alberstadt
June 18, 2020
Good Thursday morning, golf fans.
 
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1. McIlroy: Players who care about their careers should be here
BBC report…”Rory McIlroy says the European players who opted not to travel to the United States for the PGA Tour’s restart last week should not complain about losing out on world ranking points.”
  • …”I mean if you really care about your career and care about moving forward you should be here,” said McIlroy.
  • …”Look, personally, if I were in their shoes and I was asked to come over to the States and shelter in place or quarantine for two weeks before these tournaments, I would have done that,” said McIlroy, 31.”
  • “I get there’s different variables and families and stuff involved, but we all have the means to rent a very nice house in a gated community in Florida and… you know, it’s not a hardship for two weeks to come over and quarantine.”
2. No positive tests on PGA Tour
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…”The Tour administered 369 on-site tests this week at the RBC Heritage and 98 tests following the third round of the Charles Schwab Challenge for players and caddies scheduled to travel to this week’s event on the circuit’s charter flight.”
  • “Also for the second consecutive week there were positive tests on the Korn Ferry Tour. There were 408 on-site tests issued this week at the event in St. Augustine, Fla., with two positives from caddies. Last week there were four positive tests, three caddies and a player, at TPC Sawgrass.”
3. DL3 on captains picks: “Let’s just take the top 12 and be done with it”
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…”Stricker seemed to embrace the chance to pick half his team, the move isn’t for everyone.”
  • “No. I was in the Jack Nicklaus category. Let’s just take the top 12 and be done with it,” said two-time captain Davis Love III, when asked if he would have wanted six picks.
  • “Love explained that the captain’s picks are the toughest part of the job and adding two more selections to the process will only intensify the decision.”
  • …”It’s the guys you don’t pick. You have to call them, and I’ve seen Bubba Watson, talked to him three times already this week, about this year’s Ryder Cup,” Love said. “It’s still awkward with guys that you didn’t pick or that you did pick and felt like they didn’t help. So it’s terrible.”
4. How to speed up diversity? 
Cameron Morfit at PGATour.com talking with former PGA Tour pro, Adrian Stills…”From my perspective there has been some progress,” says Stills, who is now is the General Manager and teaching pro at Osceola. “The unfortunate part of it all is it’s just been so slow.”
  • …”Stills hopes we’re moving beyond the era when he was mysteriously denied entry into an elite junior tournament that still exists. Later, his almost entirely black golf team at South Carolina State was denied entry at certain hotels. Still, the struggle continues.”
  • “I’ve stopped using the word change,” Stills says, “but I’m emphasizing the word grow. People have to learn to grow. You may not change, but you should never stop growing. You should be able to process and come to different conclusions. And even if you don’t, you should at least have some opportunity to interact with people you don’t know. Golf is a good catalyst for that.”
5. APGA’s seven-tournament schedule
PGATour.com staff report…”The Advocates Professional Golf Association (APGA), professional golf’s newly-prominent tour promoting diversity in the sport, will launch a seven-tournament schedule in June highlighted by events in the major markets of Atlanta, Chicago, and Los Angeles.”
  • “The APGA burst into the pro sports spotlight in January when the Farmers Insurance Open hosted a tournament during the annual PGA TOUR stop at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California, including the APGA Tour players and officials in operations, hospitality, and media operations throughout the week.”
  • “The 27-hole APGA Tour at the Farmers Insurance Open competition, organized in collaboration with the PGA TOUR, Farmers and The Century Club of San Diego, took place on the Torrey Pines North golf course while the best players in the world were competing in the third round of the Open on Torrey Pines South. The exposure resulted in major print, digital, and TV media coverage about the 11-year-old tour and its mission of bringing diversity to the highest levels of professional golf in conjunction with the PGA TOUR, Farmers Insurance, Lexus and other supporting organizations.”
6. McIlroy on Bryson’s distance: “Holy sh*t”
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…”The 31-year-old has always ranked among the Tour’s longest players off the tee, but even he was impressed with Bryson DeChambeau’s performance last week at the Charles Schwab Challenge.”
  • “He hit a couple drives on Sunday that [caddie Harry Diamond] and I just looked at each other, and we’re like, holy sh*t, that was unbelievable,” said McIlroy, who was paired with DeChambeau on Sunday at Colonial. “He hit one into the wind on 11. I hit a really good one and probably hit it like 315, 320. He must have flew my ball by 40 yards. He hit it like 370, 375 into the wind. It was crazy. It was nuts. It’s unbelievable.”
7. U.S. Am adjustments
Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…“The field for the U.S. Amateur, usually 312 competitors deep, will be reduced to 264 for the Aug. 10-16 championship at Bandon Dunes, which will still utilize two courses for stroke play, Bandon Dunes and Bandon Trails. The U.S. Women’s Amateur, set for Aug. 3-9 at Woodmont Country Club in Rockville, Maryland, will now have a 132-player field instead of 156 players.”
  • …”For the U.S. Amateur, all match-play qualifiers from the 2019 championship at Pinehurst will be eligible to compete, as will winners/runner(s)-up of this summer’s Western Amateur, North and South Amateur, Sunnehanna Amateur and Southern Amateur. The field will also include several top performers from the U.S. Mid-Amateur, U.S. Junior Amateur and U.S. Senior Amateur: last four champions, last two runners-up and, for all but the senior event, last year’s quarterfinalists…The top 225 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking as of June 24 will also be exempt.”
  • …As for the U.S. Women’s Amateur, the exemption changes are similar, though it will only exempt the Round of 32 qualifiers from last year’s championship while taking fewer exempt players via the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, U.S. Girls’ Junior and U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur. While the past four winners and past two runners-up from all three events are eligible, only last year’s Girls’ Junior Round of 16 qualifiers and last year’s Mid-Amateur semifinalists will also be extended invites.”
8. How tour life has changed
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard polled the pros for the most substantial changes to their workdays in the COVID-19 era…
  • …The absence of fans has been the most-talked-about difference since the Tour returned from a 91-day hiatus, and those who found themselves in quiet contention last week certainly felt the difference.
  • …For many players, it’s the simple things that have changed because of the COVID-19 restrictions, like how you interact with your caddie.
  • …For most players, traveling from city to city has become second nature and routines have been refined over the years – what hotel to stay at, where to eat, what airport to fly into. There are now designated and “highly suggested” places to stay and attend.
9. Rory’s “Sunday problem” 
The NY Post’s Mark Cannizzaro…”when Rory McIlroy, the No. 1-ranked player in the world, is at or near the top of a leaderboard in the final round of a golf tournament, there are expectations. And those expectations are that he should win the tournament.”
  • “…McIlroy entered the final round of last week’s Charles Schwab Challenge three shots out of the lead held by Xander Schauffele at Colonial Country Club.”
  • “And on Sunday, while most of the players around him either made a charge up the leaderboard or at least kept within touch of the lead, McIlroy went backward, shooting an eye-opening 6-over-par 41 on the front nine and finishing with a 74 that left him in a tie for 32nd.”

 

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TGD: Faldo, New TM Irons Drop, Bryson and Rickie scoop with Cobra Tour Manager Ben Schomin and the decline of my golf game

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On this episode of TGD brought to you by Titleist, Johnny goes in on the new TaylorMade MB, Faldo’s comment on Bryson’s wedges, the demise of his golf game and some nuggets on Rickie and Bryson with Cobra Golf Tour operations manager Ben Schomin.

Enjoy!

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GolfWRX Classifieds (07/09/20): YES! Putter, Mevo, Honma irons

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At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

These are some of the latest cool finds from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

Member mlp021 – Flightscope Mevo

If you are looking to add some fun to your practice routine, while also getting useful data to help you improve and become more consistent, the Mevo is one of the best options around.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Flightscope Mevo 

Member OpenPar – YES! Golf Holly Putter

Finding any classic YES! putters in good shape continues to be more difficult, but this Holly looks like it hasn’t seen many rounds of golf, and it even comes with the original cover! Yes!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Yes golf Holly

Member niznikd – In plastic Honma TW 747V Irons

These are a steal of a deal and just a third of their original asking price—and did I mention BRAND NEW!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: 747V Honma Irons

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds

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Morning 9: Why a fanless Ryder Cup never made sense | Rapid LPGA restart | How Tiger practices putting at home

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1. Officially no Ryder Cup in 2020…Prez Cup moved to ’22
What was widely reported is now official. Our Gianni Magliocco…”On Wednesday, it was officially announced that the 2020 Ryder Cup had been postponed and rescheduled for September 21-26, 2021.”
  • “Subsequently, the next Presidents Cup which was initially scheduled for September 30-October 3, 2021 will now be played in September 2022.”
  • “Per the announcement on the Ryder Cup website, the decision to postpone “was based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
  • “Speaking on the postponement, PGA of America CEO Seth Waugh stated…
  • “Unlike other major sporting events that are played in existing stadiums, we had to make a decision now about building facilities to host the 2020 Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits. It became clear that as of today, our medical experts and the public authorities in Wisconsin could not give us certainty that conducting an event responsibly with thousands of spectators in September would be possible. Given that uncertainty, we knew rescheduling was the right call. We are grateful to PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan and our partners at the TOUR for their flexibility and generosity in the complex task of shifting the global golf calendar.”
2. A fanless Cup never made sense…
ESPN’s Bob Harig…”Some 50,000 spectators a day packed Hazeltine four years ago. They came ready and roaring, fueled by flowing alcohol and the freedom that comes with a Ryder Cup, where cheering and booing is expected and taunting of the opponent comes with the territory.”
  • “It was much the same two years ago at Le Golf National outside of Paris — although the event was lacking the boorishness observed two years before that — when the Europeans romped to victory in front of a serenading home crowd.”
  • “That, in essence, is the Ryder Cup….And to not have that in any form would be nearly as depressing from a sporting standpoint as what all have endured during these unprecedented times.”
3. Forecaddie on LPGA restart
Golfweek’s Forecaddie…”After nearly five months off, LPGA players can finally begin to explore what their comeback on tour might look like, and there’s not much time to ease into things either. The decision to travel overseas for two weeks in Scotland looms large ­- not to mention the possibility of fans in Toledo. To the Forecaddie, in many ways it feels like a straight plunge into the deep end.”
  • “One day after two events in Scotland were confirmed for next month, the LPGA hosted two tour-wide conference calls on Wednesday and sent out a couple of surveys.”
  • “The Forecaddie certainly didn’t expect the LPGA to offer its players anything remotely close to the $100,000 that PGA Tour players received after testing positive for COVID-19. It looks like LPGA players will receive a $5,000 stipend if they test positive during a tournament and $2,500 if it happens while at home. Same for caddies.”
4. Playing while testing positive
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…“In what the PGA Tour is calling a clarification regarding its health and safety plan, players or caddies who continue to test positive for COVID-19 can now return to competition under certain guidelines.”
  • “Last week, the Tour announced a move to a “test-based model” for asymptomatic cases, which means that anyone who tests positive would be allowed to return competition if they returned two negative tests that were administered at least 24 hours apart.”
  • “Wednesday’s clarification addressed a player or caddie who continues to test positive after 10 days since the first symptoms appeared and hasn’t had a fever for 72 hours. That player would be allowed to return to competition with certain restrictions.”
5. LPGA return environment
Golf Channel’s Randall Mell…“There are all kinds of challenges for the women going overseas, even with Scotland set to ratify the United Kingdom’s foreign athlete quarantine exemption, which will allow Americans and players from other foreign countries to avoid the 14-day quarantine required upon arriving.”
  • “That exemption doesn’t include parents or agents.”
  • “That’s a challenge for young players accustomed to traveling with their parents, a fairly common practice in the LPGA ranks.”
  • “The Women’s British Open is creating a “bio secure zone” at Royal Troon, allowing only players, caddies and other essential personnel inside the zone, which restricts movement to the course and designated hotel.”
6. Workday features COVID-19 grouping
Todd Kelly for Golfweek…“Nick Watney, Denny McCarthy and Dylan Frittelli, who all tested positive for COVID during the PGA Tour’s restart and who the Tour says continue to test positive, are in the field at this week’s Workday Charity Open and, after a late change to the tee times, will play in the same group for the first two rounds.”
  • …”The Tour said it is following the CDC’s symptom-based model for those three golfers, as they have continued to return positive tests but they all meet the CDC guidelines for Return to Work.”
7. Asia Pacific Ams canceled 
Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…“The Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific, set for Oct. 7-10 in Thailand, and Asian-Pacific Amateur, scheduled for Oct. 29-Nov. 1 in Australia, will not be played this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
  • “While the women’s championship, which was already rescheduled from last February, will return next year for its third edition, to be played Feb. 4-7 at Siam Country Club, the men’s championship does not have a future date at this time. It was supposed to be contested at Royal Melbourne this fall.”
8. Rocket Mortgage ratings
Geoff Shackelford…”Another very solid weekend for PGA Tour ratings with not much sports competition due to the pandemic and a late start for NASCAR’s rance, a July 4 weekend that should have substantially cut into numbers, did not.”
  • “Bryson DeChameau’s win at the Rocket Mortgage Classic was up 56% from 2019 and if you ignore the silly demographics, earned plenty of eyeballs.”
9. Tiger’s at-home practice putting routine
In case you ever wondered how one of the greatest flatstick wielders practices his putting…
Explaining to GolfTV’s Henni Koyack, Woods revealed how he consistently focuses on his putting from 6 feet and in before going straight into a heavy workload of lag putting.
  • “I end up doing a few sets of chalk lines from probably about 6 feet and in. I work on my start line (and) I try and get that dialed in. And then I really don’t spend a whole lot of time in the 8-15 foot range.
  • “Once I get a lot of my dialed-in time on my putting, then I’ll lag putt a lot and start trying to get my feel in my fingers and how I like to release the putter and feel it in my stroke. I like to do designated tee drill, line drill and then lag putt to death.”
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