Connect with us

News

Morning 9: McIlroy, Conners on top at Bay Hill | Nelly surging again | Digging into the Golf Channel allegations

Published

on

By Ben Alberstadt
For comments—or if you’re looking for a fourth—email me at [email protected].
You can also find me on Twitter and Instagram.
March 5, 2021
Good Friday morning, golf fans. I’ve gotten a handful of requests for a physical version of the coffee mug in the header graphic above. Should we make a Morning 9 coffee mug available for purchase?
1 McIlroy, Conners ahead at Bay Hill
The AP’s Doug Ferguson…”Bay Hill was bustling Thursday, just like golf before the pandemic. The fans were limited in numbers, but they all wanted the same dose of entertainment provided by Rory McIlroy and Bryson DeChambeau.”
  • “First it was McIlroy, slowly feeling better about his game, and with good reason. Starting with a 55-foot putt on the par-3 second hole, he ran off five straight birdies for a share of the lead with Corey Conners in the Arnold Palmer Invitational at 6-under 66.”
2. Nelly!
AP report…”Nelly Korda didn’t miss a beat four days after her first LPGA Tour title on U.S. soil, outplaying her sister and the world’s No. 1 player for a 5-under 67 to share the lead at the Drive On Championship.”
  • “Former NCAA champion Jennifer Kupcho managed a 67 despite playing most of the back nine with a migraine that blurs her vision. Austin Ernst also had a 67 at Golden Ocala.”
3. Sheriff: No probable cause for search warrant for Woods’ blood work
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…”Villanueva, who said last week that deputies determined Woods wasn’t impaired during the time of the accident, was also asked about a USA Today report that deputies did not seek a warrant for samples of Woods’ blood to determine if he had any drugs or alcohol in his system.”
  • “In order to seek a search warrant, you have to have evidence of impairment. Absent the evidence of impairment, you’re not going to get a search warrant, period. It’s not going to get signed by the judge,” Villanueva said. “Investigators will determine what is needed to determine the cause of the collision. The first step in obtaining a search warrant is you have to have evidence of impairment to continue going down that vein. Without that you just don’t get the search warrant. You have to establish probable cause for that.”
4. Are the Kordas the LPGA Tour’s best sibling duo ever?
Tony Jesselli for WomensGolf.com…”Jessica and Nelly Korda became the third sister act to both win on the LPGA when Nelly won in October of 2018. Nelly’s victory this past week was her fourth on the LPGA, while her sister Jessica has won six times. They have become the only sister act where both players have won more than once.”
  • “Why do I think the Korda sisters are the greatest golf sister act ever? The answer to that in my opinion is easy. While Annika Sorenstam is a World Golf Hall of Famer, her sister only won once. That brings us to the Jutanugarns. Ariya is only 25 years old and is a ten time winner, but she has not won since 2018 covering over 50 starts. Can she win again? Sure she can, but she is not trending in the right direction. Sister Moriya has just one victory in well over 200 LPGA starts. Ariya, a former No.1, has fallen to No.23 in the Rolex World Rankings, while her sister is No. 43.”
5. Digging into the Golf Channel sexual harassment, sexism allegations
Ben Strauss dives into reports of sexual harassment and sexist behavior at for the Washington Post…”In interviews with The Washington Post, 16 former and two current employees echoed Cornwell’s concerns, describing sexism, misogyny and harassment they have endured at the network.”
  • “Golf Channel disputed Cornwell’s claims in a response to the EEOC. An NBC spokesman, Greg Hughes, said in an email that the network is “vigorously defending this matter.”
  • “Presented with a list of allegations made by other women, Hughes disputed many of their claims and said “the vast majority” had been investigated and that “appropriate action was taken.” Others, he said, the network was only now hearing of and would investigate “promptly and thoroughly.” The network declined to make any employees available for interviews.”
  • “Many of the women spoke on the condition of anonymity, citing fear of breaking the nondisclosure agreements they signed in exchange for severance…”
  • “Golf Channel is committed to providing a workplace where all employees are treated equitably and respectfully, and regularly conducts training to support that goal,” Hughes said.
  • “Former employees agreed that many of the men they made complaints about did eventually leave the network. But the culture, they said, remained.”
6. Study: Golf fans are the angriest fans of social media
Our Gianni Magliocco…”Hop on to social media during a live sporting event, and emotions are spilling over, but when it comes to golf, the prominent feeling is often anger and frustration.”
  • “That is down to gambling, and according to a new study from OnlineGambling.Ca, golf supporters are the angriest on social media, with 42% of all tweets about the sport being classified as an angry comment.”
  • “The study also found that cricket and ice hockey fans show the most love for their team, with 38% of their social media posts being filled with love. Basketball fans seem to be the saddest with their teams’ results, with 38% of reactions being unhappy.”
Your Reaction?
  • 0
  • LEGIT0
  • WOW1
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP1
  • OB0
  • SHANK6

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: 9 de la mañana: McIlroy, Conners en la cima en Bay Hill | Nelly vuelve a surgir | Profundizando en las acusaciones de Golf Channel - Noticias del Mundo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

News

Tour Rundown: Tavatanakit takes ANA, Spieth ends victory drought

Published

on

It’s a splendid fortnight in golf. The first weekend of April brings the first major championship of the year, on the LPGA Tour. It also shines a light on the finest female amateurs in the game as they compete at the Augusta National Golf Club. The PGA and Korn Ferry tours make their final stops before a week off for the men at Augusta. Spring has touched down in most of the lower 48 of the USA, and we are ready to run down more results in this week’s Tour Rundown.

LPGA: ANA Inspiration welcomes Tavatanakit as 2021 champion

Patty Tavatanakit should make the UCLA faithful forget about recent close calls. She is a major champion on the LPGA Tour, and the former Bruin closed out her first win on tour in style. The 21-year old tapped in for par at the 72nd hole for an 18-under total. Tavatanakit was the only golfer to post four rounds in the 60s this week, and she held off a ravenous Lydia Ko, who came charging fast and nearly caught the third-round leader.

Once upon a time, Lydia Ko was the darling and the face of the LPGA Tour. Her teenage years were spent raising trophies and causing all to wonder, how many will she win? From 2012 to 2016, Ko won 14 times on tour; since then, she has one victory, which came three years ago. Ko changed everything in her game, from caddie to instructor to clubs. Now, in 2021, she appears poised to challenge for a place on the podium that once seemed so familiar.

Ko posted five birdies and an eagle on the front nine and turned in 29. Two more birdies at 10 and 11 brought her to nine-under on the day and had fans thinking 59 and another major title. Alas, Ko’s raging run slowed, and she managed one more birdie coming home, at the 15th. She reached 16-under par, but Tavatanaki gave little evidence of capitulation.

The former UCLA Bruin from Thailand debuted on the LPGA Tour in 2020. Her first campaign was one of learning and patience, and she entered the week ranked 103rd in the world, and 17th in the Race to CME Globe. In her first tour around the Mission Hills course, PattyT posted a total of four bogeys on the week. She counter-balanced them with two eagles on the week, one coming at the second hole on Sunday. No bogeys came her way on day four, and she added two birdies to the eagle and remained composed throughout the round. It’s a rare feat for a veteran to play bogey-free golf under the bright klieg lights of a major championship. To do so, essentially, as a rookie, is nearly miraculous.

Amateur: Augusta National Women’s Amateur to Japan in extra time

The first playing of the ANWA, in 2019, featured a two-woman showdown between winner Jennifer Kupcho and runner-up Maria Fassi. The two did battle the entire third day, until Kupcho separated on the back nine, for a four-shot win. The 2021 edition tossed a different twist into the young history of the event: a playoff. Tsubasa Kajitani of Japan made par at the 18th hole, the first in extra time, to defeat the USA’s Emilia Migliaccio, who stumbled with a bogey.

The first 36 holes of the event took place at the Champion’s Resort, in nearby Evans, Georgia. Five players tied for the 30th spot, necessitating a five-for-one playoff at plus-seven. Emilie Paltrinieri made birdie on the first extra hole to earn a spot in the final 18 holes, at Augusta National. On the other end of the leader board, Rose Zhang and Ingrid Lindblad shared the lead at one-under par. Nearly every one of the thirty competitors had a shot at the win, especially when Zhang and Lindblad struggled on day three.

Lindblad had five bogeys on the final day but nearly snuck into the playoff with a birdie at the 17th. She was unable to make three at the final hole and tied for third with five others at plus-two. Zhang had a tenuous lead until the 13th hole, where she hit two balls in hazards and scratched a triple-bogey eight onto her scorecard. She bounced back with birdie at the difficult 14th but made bogey at 17 to join Lindblad in third position.

Making moves on day three were Kajitani (even par) and Migliaccio (two under). Migliaccio was bidding to become the second consecutive Demon Deacon from Wake Forest to win but missed a four-foot birdie at the last, which would have won the tournament in regulation time. Kajitani stood two-under on the day on the 17th tee in first place and proceeded to make double bogey at the penultimate hole. Her par at the last matched her with Migliaccio, and then they waited for the field to decide their fate.

In the playoff, Migliaccio missed the 18th green right and was unable to save par from a dicey position. Kajitani tapped in for par, and the seventeen-year-old lifted the champion’s trophy in delight.

PGA Tour: Valero Texas Open is Spieth’s 12th tour title

Four years ago, Jordan Spieth won the Open Championship in England. It was his third unique major championship, and many expected that he would soon add a PGA Championship to his tally. The Texan went into a tailspin brought on by a chase for more distance (and a previously undisclosed injury), and players like Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, and Justin Thomas jumped up and claimed his place among the winners.

Spieth went through many trials during the ensuing three years, struggling with all facets of his game. He showed signs of a return to his lofty, mid-2o10s stature in early 2021, but was unable to put four rounds together for a title. That changed this week in his home state, as Spieth took the 54-hole lead, then held off a fast-charging Charley Hoffman for a two-shot victory.

When he needed it most, Spieth’s drive came through. Averaging less than fifty percent fairways hit on the week, Spieth nailed 71 percent of the short grass on day four. His lone bogey came at the fourth, where he missed right and was forced to pitch into the fairway. Seven birdies on the day made up for the one miscue, and the UTexas alumnus posted the second-lowest score on the day, a 66.

Hoffman was perfect on the day, posting six birdies and zero bogeys to match Spieth’s number. He simply ran out of holes, but the runner-up finish casts the Californian as an interesting foil for this week’s Masters. Hoffman typically plays well at Augusta National, and riding a wave of great play at the Valero portends possible success for the San Diego native. Spieth would like nothing more than to add a second green jacket to his 2015 model, and his play this year certainly places him in the top five of pre-tournament contenders.

Korn Ferry Tour: Emerald Coast Classic playoff goes to Jaeger

Andrew Novak played the Sandestin course like no other this week. He didn’t win, but goodness, he amassed a passel of birdies. Novak staked himself to a three-shot lead over David Lipsky, courtesy of 14-under play over the first three days. On Sunday, the North Carolina native and Wofford College alumnus scribble six birdies on his scorecard. Unfortunately for Novak, a pair of front-nine doubles and three bogeys joined those birdies. His plus-one was not the kind that anyone wants, and Novak ended the week in solo third position.

No one escaped Sandestin without a bogey on Sunday. Stephan Jaeger, a Korn Ferry Tour legend, posted a 66 and reached 14-under par, one better than Novak. Jaeger once shot 58 on the Triple-A tour, and had completed five prior victories on the prep circuit. David Lipsky had spent years honing his game in Europe, and joined Jaeger at 14-deep with a pair of closing birdies. The duo returned to the watery finishing hole, and each reached the green in regulation. Jaeger was able to two-putt for par, but Lipsky needed three putts to get home. Jaeger earned a return trip to the PGA Tour with his sixth career triumph on the developmental circuit.

Your Reaction?
  • 4
  • LEGIT0
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK0

Continue Reading

Tour News

Valero Texas Open Tour Truck Report: Stenson back in Diablo, Rickie’s limited-edition driver, latest AutoFlex-er

Published

on

With the Masters next week, players who have punched their tickets to Augusta National will be making the proverbial “final tune-ups” to gear and games at TPC San Antonio.

Those who are without an iconic Masters invitation card have but one path into the field of the first major of the year: a Valero Texas Open victory.

Accordingly, there’s a whiff of desperation blowing in the Texas wind. Even players who can count themselves among the fortunate next week are searching—such as Henrik Stenson, who is returning to his beloved Callaway Diablo Octane Tour 3-wood.

As a reminder, you can check out all our photos from the Valero Texas Open here

Callaway

Phil Mickelson is testing a new prototype version of the PM Grind wedge. Unfortunately, Callaway is mum on any further details!

Also on the Phil phront: Mickelson put a Fujikura Ventus Black 6 TX shaft in his Mavrik driver.

As mentioned in the introduction, Henrik Stenson has shelved his Mavrik 3-wood in favor of his immortal beloved, Diablo Octane Tour 3-wood.

Stenson is also gaming an Odyssey 2-Ball Ten putter.

Branden Grace is testing an AutoFlex shaft.

Titleist

Bernd Wiesberger is testing a new TSi2 13.5-degree fairway wood with a TPT Hi 14 shaft (he’s currently gaming a 15-degree TSi2).

Lanto Griffin moved into a TSi3 (10 degrees, D4 SureFit setting).

Chesson Hadley is testing a TSi3 (10 degrees). He’s seeing better control and increased ball speed. (Hadley is currently in a 10-degree TSi2).

An update, of sorts—and an aesthetically pleasing one—on Byeong Hun An’s 60-T

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Aaron Dill (@vokeywedgerep)


Cleveland/Srixon

Graeme McDowell is testing Mitsubishi MMT iron shafts.

Cobra

Rickie Fowler has the limited edition Cobra Palm Tree Crew (PTC) RadSpeed XB in play.

Jason Dufner is testing Mitsubishi MMT iron shafts in his King Cobra Forged CB irons.

Scott Garrison (SEG Golf)

Brian Gay had a KBS Hybrid shaft installed in his TaylorMade SIM2

KJ Choi added a LAGP shaft to his Cobra RadSpeed driver.

Gary Woodland had new KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 Black wedge shafts installed

Sam Bennett’s Bettinardi BB8 raw putter got a LAGP putter shaft and SuperStroke grip.

Free agents

Charl Schwartzel has his old Nike wedges back in the bag.

Equipment free agent extraordinaire Ryan Moore swapped out his Mizuno MP-18 irons for Ping Blueprint.

As a reminder, you can check out all our photos from the Valero Texas Open here

Your Reaction?
  • 127
  • LEGIT16
  • WOW4
  • LOL3
  • IDHT3
  • FLOP2
  • OB1
  • SHANK7

Continue Reading

Tour Photo Galleries

Most interesting photos from Tuesday at the 2021 Valero Texas Open – Part 2

Published

on

This week, the PGA Tour is at TPC San Antonio on the Oaks Course for the Valero Texas Open. GolfWRX was on-site Tuesday to catch a glimpse into the bags of some of the world’s top golfers.

The field of 144 is getting ready to battle starting Thursday for the $7.7 million purse, with $1.386 million going to the winner. The tournament is also the last event where players can qualify for The Masters, just like Canadian Corey Conners did last year.

Don’t forget you can check out all our image galleries in the GolfWRX Tour Equipment forum.

Hunter Mahan going “G”

OSU—Oklahoma State University—is a golf powerhouse. Golfers from OSU who have gone on to great professional careers include Charles Howell III, Rickie Fowler, Matthew Wolff, Viktor Hovland, and of course one of the “OG’s” Hunter Mahan who also happens to by playing a Ping combo set with a new G425 long iron.
Yeah, I shoehorned all that in there.

Charles Howell’s bag is a treasure trove of gadgets

Charles’ bag includes an Orange Whip, alignment sticks, extra alignment sticks, extra driver shafts, and multiple putters. This is why gearhead golfers love CH3.

Phil loves to flex

 

Phil Mickelson will always be a showman, and this week as he tunes up for Augusta National he was flexing all kinds of gear on the range at TPC San Antonio.

  • Three drivers in the bag
  • Custom Callaway alignment stick cover
  • Double launch monitor/iPad set up
  • His own “Air Phil” logo on his shoes
  • And how can we forget those calves?

The second coming of the 2-Ball is upon us

I can remember it like yesterday. It was the summer of 2001, I just got a brand new set of irons, I was working at a golf course and playing every single day, and the Odyssey 2-Ball had just been released. That putter was everywhere, and 20 years later in 2021, I have those same feelings all over again—minus the whole “working at a golf course and playing every day” thing.

The new Odyssey 2-Ball Ten is all over professional golf right now, and we spotted more than one on the putting green in Texas.

Hideki gonna Hideki

Here is your weekly reminder that Hideki Matsuyama “out gears” every other golfer on tour when it comes to the weekly testing of driver shafts and putters.

Branden Grace is looking to go “Auto”

Branden Grace, how sweet the swing,
So flowing and so free,
The AutoFlex shaft, he is trying,
Might be the final key….for him to win for the second time this season.

Branden already won this year at the Puerto Rico Open and in Texas this week he was on the range deep into testing with the AutoFlex shaft in his Callaway Epic Speed Triple Diamond.

Japan forged Apex MB’s still going strong

The very limited edition “Japan forged” Callaway Apex MB’s which were originally made exclusively for Francesco Molinari have still been finding a place on the tour—and my goodness, they look fantastic.

Fluff is like the Energizer Bunny

Famous PGA Tour caddy Mike “Fluff” Cowan is 73 years young, looking fit, and still an absolute boss!

You don’t always need a staff bag

Luke Donald was seen grinding away on the range, and lucky for his caddie, Luke’s rig has been made a little bit lighter this week by swapping out the traditional staff bag with a tour stand bag instead.

It’s True, seriously

Former Ping staffer turned free agent, turned Scratch Golf staffer and part-owner, turned free agent, turned PXG staffer, turned free agent once again Ryan Moore has been playing a mixed bag that included Ping Blueprint irons, and an ever-changing array of wedges and woods.

The one constant for Ryan is his dedication to his True Linkswear shoes (a company he co-owns with his brother), and his love for his alma mater UNLV. This is why Ryan Moore is a True GolfWRX gear head legend!

It’s BACK!!!

It’s no secret Henrik Stenson has been struggling recently on the course, and like many golfers, it appears that he is looking to right the ship, or at least free it from the banks of the Suez Canal of poor play by going back to his faithful Diablo Tour strong 3-wood.

The mega combo set

Canadian Adam Hadwin isn’t well known as being a gearhead in the traditional sense, but it doesn’t mean he isn’t afraid to mix things up. His iron set is a combo of three different models which include the Apex MB, Apex TCB, and an older model Apex UT.

The graphite godfather is in the field

Everyone made a big fuss when Bryson went to all graphite in his clubs, but the true modern graphite iron shaft godfather is KJ Choi. He has used a variety of graphite iron shafts going back to 2003 and he has a yet-to-be-identified set in his Srixon ZX7’s.

You know, maybe there is something to graphite iron shafts and weight lifting, since it has been well documented KJ Choi was a competitive powerlifter in his teens before turning his attention to golf. So before we give Bryson all the credit for beefing up and using graphite shafts, we should remember KJ was doing it before Bryson was in diapers.

Don’t forget you can check out all our image galleries in the GolfWRX Tour Equipment forum.

Your Reaction?
  • 56
  • LEGIT6
  • WOW3
  • LOL1
  • IDHT1
  • FLOP1
  • OB2
  • SHANK2

Continue Reading

WITB

Facebook

Trending