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Morning 9: Walk-off winner for Sergio | Ray | Reid | No. 1 am turning pro | Should golf be fair?



1. Sergio’s walk-off win
AP report…”Sergio Garcia delivered two key shots on the back nine, the last one an 8-iron to 30 inches on the final hole for birdie and a one-shot victory in the Sanderson Farms Championship.”
  • “Garcia closed with a 5-under 67 and won for the 10th consecutive year worldwide, and the first time on the PGA TOUR since the 2017 Masters.”
  • “Peter Malnati, whose lone PGA TOUR victory came at this tournament five years ago, closed with a career-best 63 and waited nearly two hours to see if it would hold up.”
2. Iron covers and a European Tour trophy
European Tour report…”Aaron Rai defeated Tommy Fleetwood in a play-off to win his first Rolex Series title at the 2020 Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open.”
  • “The Englishman signed for a wonderful 64 to set the target at 11 under but countryman Fleetwood holed a 20 foot putt on the last for a closing birdie to take it to extra holes at The Renaissance Club.”
  • “It was advantage Fleetwood off the tee as Rai found a bunker but the 25 year old rescued his par and when Fleetwood three putted from just off the green, Rai had his second European Tour title.”
3. Mel Reid!
Keith Jackson for Sky Sports…“Mel Reid was relieved and delighted that her “huge sacrifice” in moving to the US was justified as she celebrated her maiden LPGA Tour title in New Jersey.”
  • “Reid atoned for her disappointing finish in Portland last week as she clinched a two-shot win over Jennifer Kupcho at the ShopRite LPGA Classic, firing a final-round 67 to set a new tournament scoring record at 19 under par.”
4. Is must be the…pants?
Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…“Evan Harmeling arrived in Savannah, Georgia, earlier this week with just one pair of golf pants.”
  • “He should be able to buy at least a few more after Sunday.”
  • “The 32-year-old Princeton grad, who two months ago didn’t even have a top-25 finish in his Korn Ferry Tour career, captured the Savannah Golf Championship in a playoff for his first KFT title.”
  • “Harmeling sunk a 12-footer for birdie on the final hole of regulation at the Landings Club, and then birdied the par-5 18th hole again in the playoff to outduel Kevin Dougherty.”
  • …”It likely helped that Harmeling was wearing his lucky outfit – yellow polo, blue pants, brown belt and white visor. The pants are Harmeling’s only golf pants, he says. Harmeling also wore the polo last year in Jamaica when he won on PGA Tour Latinoamerica.”
5. Johnny’s love/hate
I LOVE the power that Tiger Woods has over the game It’s completely earned, necessary, and I’m grateful. Not only did he change the way the game was played but he also put the game on the national stage in a way NOBODY ever dreamed nor predicted. The game itself hangs on his every move and rightly so. When was the last time you remember the No. 22-ranked player was the headliner at a tournament where the majority of the other 21 players ahead of him were also in the field? He doesn’t move the needle, he is the needle. Still.
I HATE that the game has changed so much that golf, even 15-20 years ago, is unrecognizable. With the change in equipment and the constant pursuit of speed, our sport (especially at the highest level) has morphed into the WWF. Now, I do love it and enjoy watching/covering every minute. However, it’s no longer the game I was taught; it’s something else, and at 43-years-old, it makes me feel old and weak. OK, I said it. I’m bitter. I wanna hit it like these kids do, and I can’t. I’ll retreat now to my pity party and maybe do a squat or two…until my back spasms.
6. Japan’s Takumi Kanaya, No. 1 ranked amateur in the world, set to turn pro
Ryan Herrington for Golf Digest…“The 23-year-old’s distinguished amateur career included a win at the 2018 Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship, which earned him spots into the 2019 Masters and Open Championship. At August National, he made the cut and finished T-58. Then last November, he became the fourth amateur in history to win an event on the Japan Golf Tour.”
7. Lynch: A major champion says farewell, with no fanfare and no fans
Happy trails, Paul Lawrie. Eamon Lynch says it better than I could…”wear, tear and Scottish weather takes a toll, and this week – at age 51 – Lawrie announced his retirement from the European Tour during the Scottish Open, his 620th start on that circuit. The low-key announcement – a farewell with no fanfare and no fans – is oddly in keeping with Lawrie’s demeanor. It’s less than he deserves.”
8. Should golf be fair?
Our Ryan Barath examines the question…“It’s a fair test” is a phrase we often hear from golfers when they describe a course, but what does it really imply?
“The phrase itself is misleading when you take a step back and realize any course played by all competitors under the same conditions is “fair.” Even then, weather changes throughout the day force golfers to play under varying circumstances which can cause a course to become more difficult. Golf is an outdoor game and with that brings in an uncontrollable element that golfers must deal with whether it be wind, rain, heat, cold, and even on occasion snow. As unfavorable as the conditions might get, they will always be “fair.”
  • “Next, we have courses, and they generally fit into two loose categories: resort-style with wide fairways and easily accessible greens and traditionally penal championship-style with longer rough, narrower fairways, and smaller or extremely sloping greens. Regardless of handicap, both styles can be enjoyed by golfers, and following the recent U.S. Open, it’s good to remind ourselves its ok to shoot a higher score sometimes-because it’s all relative to the day and conditions.”
9. Sergio’s winning WITB
Driver: TaylorMade SIM (9 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Black 7 Z
3-wood: TaylorMade SIM “Rocket 3” (14 degrees @14.5)
Shaft:  Fujikura Ventus Black 7 X
5-wood: TaylorMade SIM (19 degrees @18.5)
Shaft:  Fujikura Ventus Black 8 X
Irons: Ping Blueprint (3-PW)
Shafts: Nippon Pro Modus3 Tour 130 X


Wedges: Vokey SM8 (54-12D @52, 58-T)
Shafts: Nippon Pro Modus3 Tour 130 X


Putter: TaylorMade Spider X
Grip: SuperStroke Tour


Grips: SuperStroke S-Tech


Ball: TaylorMade TP5


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  1. Alina

    Oct 5, 2020 at 10:57 pm

  2. Yougogirls

    Oct 5, 2020 at 9:39 pm

    The inaccurate reporting by Sky News and Ron whatshisname on the other article in regards to Mel Reid’s victory Sunday tell me one thing: nobody give a hoot about the LPGA except simps like me.

  3. Bob Pegram

    Oct 5, 2020 at 5:22 pm

    Most tournament courses are configured in a way that good shots are rewarded and bad shots are penalized. Most courses all the way to most municipal courses fit that description. However, one of the worst things that can be said about a course is that it sometimes rewards bad shots and penalizes good ones. It would be reasonable to say a course like that isn’t fair. However, courses like that are rarely chosen to host tournaments, at least in the pro ranks. Courses like that are relatively rare (Thanks God!).

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Ed Murray, brother of Bill, and patriarch of the Murray golf family passes away



As first reported on the Willian Murray Golf Instagram page, Ed Murray, the eldest of the famous Murray brother, and the inspiration for Caddyshack has passed away at the age of 76.

As per the statement

“Ed was the recipient of the Evans Scholarship back in 1963, while attending Northwestern University—a scholarship awarded to golf caddies—a family storyline which served as inspiration for the Danny Noonan character in ‘Caddyshack’ when Brian Doyle-Murray co-wrote that iconic screenplay.

Ed and all five Murray brothers are members of the Caddie Hall of Fame, as well—something all the boys take pride in, as this game helped shape their lives.”


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Morning 9: Mickelson dials up pre-Match chatter | Korda sisters land GD cover | Augenstein on going pro



By Ben Alberstadt
Email me at [email protected]; and find me on Twitter and Instagram.
November 24, 2020
Good Monday morning, golf fans. May you enjoy your Thursday feasting and giving of thanks and Friday shopping! I will see you all next Monday.
1. Augenstein energized
Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…”Augenstein went on to reach the semifinals of the U.S. Junior Amateur that summer. He later signed with the Commodores and made an instant impact as a freshman, winning two extra-hole matches to lead Vanderbilt to its first SEC title in 2017. The one they call “Flash” – or, as this writer has coined, “Johnny Golf” – continued to establish himself as one of the preeminent match-play competitors in amateur golf, going 8-1 in the format between conference and nationals while also finishing runner-up at the 2019 U.S. Amateur and scoring the winning point for last year’s U.S. Walker Cup team at Royal Liverpool. Last spring as a senior, he was named SEC Player of the Year and an All-American for the fourth time.
  • “In other words, Augenstein left quite the mark on the Vanderbilt program. From “best player here” to one of Vanderbilt’s best ever.”
  • “As a coach, you dream of being able to coach guys like John Augenstein,” said Limbaugh, who on Monday had to say so long to his superstar.
  • “After four and a half seasons in Nashville, Augenstein announced that he has decided to forego the final semester of his extra year of eligibility and turn professional.”
2. “Chuck tees”
Golfweek’s Todd Kelly with some remarks from Lefty amid his usual pre-Match pot-stirring…”Mickelson will likely have to carry plenty of the weight on Friday. Curry is a talented player, and Manning has shown he can swing the stick a little bit himself. As for Barkley, well, we’ve all seen that swing.
  • “At Stone Canyon, we actually have Chuck tees,” Mickelson said. “They’re a little bit further up.”
  • …”Mickelson then described part of the strategy that he and Barkley plan to deploy later this week.”
  • “If I can hit the green, and let him putt, that’s our strategy on that. Same thing on the drivable par 4s. We saw what happened in Match II where we were really getting beat up pretty good and then Tom and I, on 11, I drive the green and he rolls the putt in for eagle and it just turns the whole match the other way.”
3 Korda sisters land Golf Digest cover
…and Keely Levins landed the Q&A…Good background on the pair which could eventually be written in the history books best golfing sister duo ever.
How do you balance being sisters and competitors?
Nelly: You’re always competing against the golf course, my parents always said.
Jess: People like to put us against each other all the time to see if they can spark a rivalry or something. But we just keep disappointing everybody.
Nelly: We have little side bets here and there. At the end of the day, we want the best for each other, even though we want to beat each other as well. You go into every tournament wanting to win.
4. WMPO organizers cautiously optimistic for 2021
Nick Piecoro for the Arizona Republic…”The annual event at TPC Scottsdale is known for its raucous, jam-packed crowds. It can feel like a tailgate party, rock concert, beer festival and sporting event rolled into one. It is a defining event on the Valley’s social calendar, an excuse even for non-golf fans to head to the course and bask in the sunshine.”
  • “But no one knows what elements of Phoenix Opens past will be visible the first week of February, when the tournament is scheduled to take place.”
  • “For now, organizers expect to go forward with the event. They say it will be scaled down in every respect. Gone will be many of the temporary structures that ran parallel to the course. Organizers hope to have fans, albeit nothing close to the 200,000-plus who typically turn out on Fridays and Saturdays.”
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5. England’s courses reopen
Elliott Heath for Golf Monthly…”Golf courses in England will be allowed to re-open on 2nd December as the country exits its second lockdown.”
  • “UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson says that the rule of six will once again apply so it looks like fourballs will also be back.”
  • “The country is going back to its Tier system, with each region set to find out on Thursday…More regions will fall into higher tiers than previously, Boris Johnson said.”
6. Course whisperer readying the Ocean Course
The Post and Courier’s Jeff Hartsell…”The man known as the PGA Championship’s “course whisperer,” Kerry Haigh, is keeping an eye on those ever-increasing distances as he prepares the Ocean Course for its next turn on the golf world’s main stage.  The Ocean Course, designed by the late, great Pete Dye, has hosted the famed “War by the Shore” Ryder Cup of 1991 and the 2012 PGA Championship, where McIlroy dusted the field by eight shots.”
  • “But with the PGA moved from August to May on the golf calendar, and with long hitters such as Bryson DeChambeau leading the distance evolution in the game, the Ocean Course will face a new challenge next year. The PGA Championship, set for May 20-23, will be the second major on golf’s 2021 calendar, following The Masters in April.  Haigh, chief championships officer for the PGA of America, is responsible for the operation and course set up for the PGA Championships. He visited the Ocean Course last week to check on preparations. His goal, he said, is to not be the subject of any post-PGA analysis, good or bad.”
7. Pro-Am golf: Reifers captures TaylorMade Pebble Beach Tournament title
John Devine of the Monterey Herald…”Sitting five strokes off the pace after Thursday’s opening round, Reifers inched closer each day before producing the lowest score on Sunday to capture the 49th TaylorMade Pebble Beach Pro-Am Tournament.   Reifers overcame fast and firm conditions at Pebble Beach Golf Course to finish 4-under-par, erasing a one stroke deficit to win the tournament by three strokes over Kirk Triplett, a four-time winner of various tournaments at Pebble Beach.  Finishing a combined 13-under, Reifers used a pair of eagles on the second and third holes at Pebble Beach to grab his first lead of the four-day event, which was played at Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and Spanish Bay over the first three days.”
8. h/t Geoff Shackelford: CBS Moneywatch on golf participation
Another item for the “golf is booming” cornucopia…Via Geoff Shackelford…”CBS Moneywatch’s Megan Cerullo doesn’t tell us much we haven’t already read about golf in the pandemic. Still, after years of stories about the decline of the sport’s participation numbers, it’s worth noting pieces like this one, if nothing else to highlight that a resurgence in the game had nothing to do with the opportunity to spend $600 for ten more yards off the tee.”
  • “In August, consumers spent a record $331 million on clubs, balls, gloves and other gear — that was up 32% over the year-ago period and topped the previous sales record for that month in 2006, according to Golf Datatech.”
  • “For the first 10 months of 2020, golf equipment sales were up nearly 30% compared to the same period last year, Matt Powell, an analyst with market research firm NPD Group, told CBS MoneyWatch. Training tools, such as hitting screens, swing aids and putting matts are up 75% as enthusiasts practice their technique away from the golf course.”
9. Streb’s winning WITB
Driver: Titleist TSi2 (10 degrees)
Shaft: Project X EvenFlow RipTide 60 6.5
3-wood: Titleist TS3 (15 degrees, B2 Surefit)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana S+ 80 TX
Hybrid: Titleist TS3 (21 degrees, B2 Surefit)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Black Hy 95X
Irons: Titleist TMB (4), Titleist 620CB (5-9)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S300
Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (46-10F, 52-08F, 56-08M, 60-04L)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S300
Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Putter: Scotty Cameron GoLo Prototype
Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet
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GolfWRX Insider: Interview with RSM Classic winner Robert Streb



This week at the RSM Classic at Sea Island, Robert Streb won in clutch fashion on the second playoff hole with a pitching wedge to within inches from 160 yards. It not only set up his second PGA Tour victory but also his second victory at Sea Island with his first also coming in a playoff against Brendon de Jonge in 2015.

After the win, we had the chance to speak with Robert about that final shot on 18 as well as his clubs, how he goes about testing new equipment, and the most common mistakes he sees from amateur golfers.

RB: To start, I have to ask you about the shot you hit on the second playoff hole to set up the win. It was a pitching wedge from the rough from 160 yards. How were you able to judge the distance so well?

RS: As soon as my caddie and I saw the lie we had a really good feeling it was going to jump a bit, and that’s why I hit my pitching wedge instead of my 9-iron. We don’t always judge it as right as we did on that shot, but the big key was to make a confident swing and trust that we made the right decision— it obviously worked out for the best.

RB: If we take a deeper look at the club you hit for that shot in the playoff, you use a pitching wedge that matches your wedges rather than one that matches your irons (Vokey Design SM8 46 degree) is there a specific reason you choose to use that club vs a set matching pitching wedge?

RS: For a long time I used the pitching wedge from my iron set, but for me being a self-described feel player I like using the Vokey 46 degree because I feel I have a bit more control on half shots because of the groove technology and the overall profile of the club. When the SM8’s hit the tour I asked Dill (Titleist wedge tech Aaron Dill) about getting set up with that, and it pretty much went right into the bag. I also really like using it around the green.

RB: Sticking to new equipment, you also recently put the Titleist TSi2 driver into play. What do you like about that club versus your previous driver, and what was your process for putting that club into play?

RS: I know I mentioned this already, but I really am a feel player when it comes to my clubs, and everything has to fit my eye. The TSi2 is really appealing since I’m a guy that plays a draw and the shape of the toe is extremely appealing at address behind the ball. I did a lot of hitting it on the range before ever getting on Trackman, because I want to know that I really love it before dialing it in.

The other thing I really like is the ability to hit it a bit higher and see a flight that I really like without having it ever feel out of control. Since I like to play a draw, I like that it helps my misses stay in the air longer and go straighter—like any golfer, I like knowing that my misses are going to be better when I switch to something new.

RB: We’ve talked wedges, and we’ve talked the driver, so now let’s talk everything in between and how you like to gap your set. You previously used a 2-iron as the next club after your 3-wood and now you go from a 3-wood to a 21-degree  hybrid and then a 4-iron. What are your main goals when gapping your set?”

RS: Over time I realized that I would make more birdies and save more shots using a gap wedge over a 2-iron, so I finally made the decision to take that out of the bag and play a full four-wedge setup (46/52/56/60) and use the hybrid. I used to have to work really hard at managing my distance gapping since there was almost a 20-yard gap in the short end of my bag, but now I don’t ever have to worry about that.

At the top end of my bag, the hybrid is really versatile and I always find I get more control with a shorter club with a bit more loft vs a 5-wood, so I’ve stuck with it since I really like the iron feel I get out of that club.

From there, my 4-iron (Titleist TMB) really plays like a 3 1/2 iron—I feel confident getting a few extra yards out of it when needed because it’s hollow, while still offering the ability to hit softer shots with it, which is whys its a club I don’t mess around with.

RB: Being a player at your level, you understand how to get around a golf course and minimize mistakes. If there was one piece of advice you could offer to golfers trying to break their next scoring barrier what would it be?

RS: The biggest mistakes I see golfers make is not playing within themselves and hitting shots they aren’t truly comfortable with. This could mean a shot around the green and trying to get too aggressive, or not pulling the right club on approach shots. When I play in pro-ams, the vast majority of golfers miss short and don’t take enough club—they hit the club they think should get there rather than the one that will, and over the course of a round of golf those missed shots add up.

Being able to take your medicine when you put yourself in a bad spot can be the difference between a bogey and a triple and a hole like that can mean the difference between making a cut, or in the case of many golfers, not getting to that next scoring barrier.

Check out Streb’s full WITB: Robert Streb’s RSM Classic winning WITB

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