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May 2018
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‘PGA’ Articles

Fourth round halted with USA leading President’s Cup comfortably

The fourth round of the Presidents Cup at Muirfield Village Golf Club was halted due to weather early Saturday evening.

The tournament played catch-up on Saturday after Friday’s foursomes were delayed due to heavy rain in Dublin. The second round was finished and the third round four-ball was completed by mid-afternoon.

With one match complete in the fourth round, the Americans lead the Internationals 11.5 to 6.5. First team to 17.5 points wins the Presidents Cup.

The foursomes got underway around 4 p.m. and play was called a little after 7 p.m.


The fourth round is scheduled to restart at 7:35 a.m. Sunday (gates will open at 6:30 a.m.) with four matches to be decided. Captains Fred Couples and Nick Price will select the final round singles matchups at approximately 8 a.m. The final, singles matches, will start around 9 a.m.

“It will be another 5 a.m. bus ride for all 24 guys,” Couples said.

The foursome matchups were: Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson vs. Richard Sterne and Marc Leishman; Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley vs. Jason Day and Graham DeLaet; Webb Simpson and Brant Snedeker; Bill Hass and Steve Stricker vs. Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama and Tiger Woods and Matt Kucher vs. Ernie Els and Brendon de Jonge.

The international team dominated early, but the Americans made a push before play was halted.

“We got off to a really good start, the front nine I think we were up in all the games for a while there, and then U.S. Team started making putts and some great shots,” Price said. “I think we are still in really good shape. If we can turn one of the games around tomorrow, there’s still  a chance we can get three and a half, four points, which would really make out lives a lot easier going into the singles matches.”

Only one match was finished when play was halted with American’s Dufner and Johnson rallying past Sterne and Leishman to win four and three.  The American duo had lost their second round foursome matchup to Matsuyama and Scott earlier Saturday morning and didn’t get selected by Couples to play in the four-ball round.

“We pushed our morning match a little bit to 17 and then we had a long wait, but both Zach and I are competitors,” Dufner said. “Not everybody could play four-ball, so that’s tough on us. We were excited to get out there and play this afternoon.”

The Internationals were two up after seven, but the Americans birdied the next two holes to square things up. Johnson hit an eagle from the fairway to end things on No. 15.

“You make a shot from that distance, its luck,” Johnson said. “But, you know, we were teasing the hole a few times, so one fell in.”

American’s Mickelson and Day were squared up with Day and Delaet after completing No. 13 when play was halted. The Internationals were up by as many as three after seven, but the Americans battled back to win Nos. 8, 11 and 13 to square things up.

Oosthuizen and Schwartzel are three up on American’s Simpson and Snedeker after 12 holes, while Internationals Els and de Jonge are two up on Woods and Kuchar after nine holes.

Americna’s Haas and Stricker are two up on Scott and Matsuyama through 10.



Weather delays second day matches of President’s Cup

U.S. Captain Fred couples decided to keep his pairings intact for the second session of The Presidents Cup where his U.S. team held a 3.5 to 2.5 advantage after the first session. But weather once again played a role when rain started around 3 pm. The horn sounded at 3:09 pm and halted play for the second day in a row. The downpour of .82 inches caused a bit of clean up on the course and when play resumed at 5:45 pm, U.S. team was up in three matches, tied in one and down in the other two. Two matches were completed, a win for each side four matches will be completed tomorrow morning.


The four-ball (alternate shot) has always been favorable to the U.S. team. In 2011, the American team won 4-2 and 3.5 to 2.5 in 2009. In the format, one ball for each team is used and the players from each side alternate shots.

Fred Couples made only minor changes to his pairings moving Hunter Mahan to play with Bill Haas and putting Brendt Snedeker with Webb Simpson.

When they resumed play, the players were allowed to lift and place in the fairways and the greens were definitely softer and both teams could take dead aim at the flag.

Couples decision to put Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley up first against Jason Day and Graham DeLaet paid off as they missed some fairways and greens, got down early by one, but rallied with an eagle on the par-5 No.5, along with three birdies in a row on hole No’s 4, 5 and 6 to put them up by three. They were a combined 5-under par after seven holes. And when Mickelson sank a birdie on No. 10, they went up by four. When the Internationals conceded the putt at No. 11, then they were up by five. Bradley made a short putt on No. 12 to put them up by six and almost closed out the match on No. 13 but his five foot put lipped around the side of the center of the cup and carded a bogey to go 5-up. They lost ground on No.13 and No.14 and had some trouble closing things out as momentum seemed to shift momentarily. They would close things out on the 15th hole when Mickelson hit to the green from the intermediate rough from 73-yards out and Bradley finished it up with a short putt.

“No matter what, I needed to make that putt,” Bradley said. “Felt good to make that putt to win the match.”

Phil Mickelson has played with Bradley for two days and feels he feeds off the energy. “I love playing with Keegan, love the energy,” he said. “We played some of our best golf today.”

Captain Nick Price put Ernie Els and Brendon DeJonge against Hunter Mahan and Bill Haas in the second groupings and it paid off as the International team stormed 3-up after seven holes. Els in his 8th Presidents cup made a clutch birdie on No. 9, when he blasted a shot from the bunker into the hole and keep the U.S. team from gaining any momentum and kept the score at 3-up. They went 4-up when Els hit his fairway shot on the green on No. 11 and DeJonge sank the putt for the birdie. They closed out their match 4&3 when the Americans conceded Els putt that missed by just a foot or so.

Those were the only matches that were completed.

Branden Grace and Richard Sterne played against Steve Stricker and rookie Jordan Spieth. A bogey on No. 3 by the International team gave Stricker and Spieth a 1-up advantage. The increased it to 2-up when they birdied the 5th hole, but lost the stroke on a bogey on No. 6, prior to the weather delay. They got back to 2-up with a birdie on the 8th hole and they increased it to 3-up after 10. The U.S. team had a chance to close the gap on the 11th hole when Grace put the second shot in the creek but both sides would par the and halve the hole. They went 4-up when Spieth put in a birdie of eight feet on No. 12, but gave up another hole on No. 13 when Grace put his putt in the hole for a birdie.

The tightest match of the day was match #10. Angel Cabrere and Marc Leishman went back and forth against Webb Simpson and Brendt Snedeker. The Americans were up by one through four holes, but all square after eleven. The U.S. team bogeyed No. 11 to give the internationals a 1-up lead when Snedeker’s 11-foot putt was short of the hole and they went 2-up on a birdie from Cabrera. The were 1-up after the 13th when Cabrera’s made the second putt for a bogey.

Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar who won their match yesterday 5&4, battled with Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel, in what some have described as the Internationals super group. All told, the four players have combined to win 15 majors. Kuchar birdied the first hole to give them a lead and increased it to 2-up on No. 6. They lost the 8th hole, but a bogey by the Internationals put them back to 2-up after nine. On the 12th hole, Woods overshot the green and the ball went into the back bunker, but Oosthuizen could not capitalize when his shot went right of the green and bounced off the side of the green and into the water. Kuchar’s difficult shot found the bunker and Woods’ shot came within five feet of the hole when they halted play.

The last pairing of Jason Duffner and Zach Johnson, who handily defeated Brandon Grace and Richard Sterne 5&3 yesterday, were up against Hideki Matsuyama and Adam Scott, who halved against Haas and Simpson. They did not have an easy day like yesterday as the Internationals were 3-up after six holes. After the delay, Dufner put in a short putt on No. 7 to get to within two, but gave up another hole at No. 8 when Matsuyama hit his 1st putt in the hole for a par and Dufner missed his for bogey. On the 11th hole, Dufner’s shot from the rough outside the green did not get onto the green and Johnson had to make the chip for the par, but missed and the Internationals were 4-up.

With Match seven and eight the only ones completed, tomorrow will be a very long day for most of the players as they were not able to finish all the matches. They will start again at 7:35 tomorrow morning before trying to get back on schedule with two sessions for 36 holes split between foursomes and four-ball for each team.



USA overcomes rally by International Team to gain opening edge in President’s Cup

The Presidents Cup started out with pomp and circumstance with former President George W. Bush greeting the golfers and The Ohio State marching band playing before an excited crowd surrounding the first tee.

Midway through the matches, the USA had leads in all six matches, but then a weather delay of an hour and twenty minutes seemed to give the International team a breath of fresh air. They would rally to win two matches, halve one and end the day down to the United States 3 ½ to 2 1/2 points.

1376378_590789174319083_776787290_nInternational team members Jason Day and Graham Delaet started out in the first pairings and birdied the first hole. They would give up the lead on No. 3 and later in the round bounce back to even things up after both Day and DeLaet birdied the par-5 15th hole. They would win the match 1-up when Day’s long putt on No. 18 found the cup.

“Ever since I was a little kid, I always wanted to hit the big, clutch putts and it was great to have that chance to hit that putt.” Day said.

The largest margin of victory for the United States was the team of Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar, who were up by four after 13 holes and closed out 5 & 4 trouncing Angel Carbrera and Marc Leishman to give the USA their first points of the match.

“We ham-and-egged it pretty good,” Woods said afterwards. “Kuch made a bunch of putts on the front nine. I got it rolling there for a little bit and on the back nine, it was him or me on each hole. We did pretty good.”

It was the 21st win in President’s Cup competition for Woods. “We had some fun out there. It’s awfully fun partnering up with the No.1 player in the world,” Kuchar said.

The International team took another match when Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel defeated Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley 2 & 1 to give the Internationals a total of 2 points.

“Me and Charl played really well,” Oosthuizen said of the win. “I think we did proper better-ball. When he was out of the hole, I played well. When I was out of it, he hit some amazing shots.”

“We got off to a good start,” Michelson said of his loss. “We were rolling there through seven holes. We were 5-under and playing well. I played terribly the back nine and left Keegan alone on a lot of holes.”

Jason Duffner and Zach Johnson easily handled Branden Grace and Richard Sterne winning 5 & 3 to give the American team another point. Johnson had been recovering from an illness and felt the adrenaline kick in. “I think adrenaline and energy is not a hard thing to find in this event, so come the first tee, I felt‑‑ once I hit my tee shot down the fairway on 1, I felt great.” he said.

“The putting killed us today,” Grace said. “We hit a lot of putts that lipped-out, the hit a lot of putts that lipped-in.”

Adam Scott and Hedeki Matsuyama battled against Americans Bill Haas and Web Simpson all day and were able halve the match when Matsuyama birdied No. 18 to make it 2.5 for each side.

“It’s hard to win matches when every hole they have got good birdie looks, and what Hideki did on the last hole was a great shot.” Hass said. “We knew we needed 3 on 18, and we just didn’t hit the shot we needed to hit to win the match out right, but a half a point is good against two of the best players in the world.”

The final group to finish was International team members Ernie Els and Brendan De Jonge, who battled Steve Stricker and rookie Jordan Speith back and forth throughout the match. Stricker and and Spieth got as far as 2-up before succumbing on the 17th hole to Ernie Els’ birdie. On the 18th hole, Spieth found the water on the right side of the fairway, while Stricker’s drive found the fairway left of the trap on the right hand side. Sticker’s second shot found the front left bunker, but he was able to knock it out of the bunker and within two feet of the cup. De Jonge had a chance to halve the hole, but his putt from 10 feet went right of the hole to give the USA the final point of the day and the lead 3.5 to 2.5.

The International team had not lost a four-ball competition since 2003, which is why captain Nick Price lobbied the PGA to start the Presidents Cup competition with the four-ball, where each player plays his own ball and the best score wins the hole. The matches continue tomorrow when the will play foursomes (alternate shot).

Also, tomorrow’s pairings were announced:

Match 7 Phil Mickelson/Keegan Bradley (U.S.) vs. Jason Day/Graham DeLaet (International)

Match 8 Bill Haas/Hunter Mahan (U.S.) vs. Ernie Els/Brendon de Jonge (International)

Match 9 Steve Stricker/Jordan Spieth (U.S.) vs. Branden Grace/Richard Sterne (International)

Match 10 Webb Simpson/Brandt Snedeker (U.S.) vs. Angel Cabrera/Marc Leishman (International)

Match 11 Matt Kuchar/Tiger Woods (U.S.) vs. Louis Oosthuizen/Charl Schwartzel (International)

Match 12 Zach Johnson/Jason Dufner (U.S.) vs. Adam Scott/Hideki Matsuyama (International)

Note: Presidents Cup rookies (11) are in bold


Elite Foursome of Rose, Dufner, Scott, Harrington will play in PGA Grand Slam in Bermuda

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PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Masters Champion Adam Scott, U.S. Open Champion Justin Rose, PGA Champion Jason Dufner and defending PGA Grand Slam of Golf Champion Padraig Harrington form the elite foursome who will compete in the 31st PGA Grand Slam of Golf, Oct. 14-16, at Port Royal Golf Course in Bermuda.

Scott, Rose and Dufner will make their first appearance in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf, while Harrington is making is fourth visit to the Island.  Harrington won last year’s event and finished runner-up in 2007 and ’08.

Harrington, whose one-stroke triumph in 2012 made him just the second European-born winner in event history, replaces Open Champion Phil Mickelson, who will be unable to compete due to an end-of-season scheduling conflict.

The defending champion of the PGA Grand Slam of Golf receives the initial invitation if a current major champion is unable to compete; then the Major Champions Points list – which charts the performance throughout the year of active major champions – is used to complete the field.

Tickets for the 31st PGA Grand Slam of Golf may be purchased by dialing 1-800-PGA-GOLF (800-742-4653), or 561-624-7601, or by visiting

The PGA Grand Slam of Golf

Established in 1979, the PGA Grand Slam of Golf has grown from an 18-hole, single-day charity event to a 36-hole annual showdown that matches professional golf’s best against each other for a $1.35 million purse. TNT will televise the PGA Grand Slam of Golf to 88 million U.S. households, and it is seen in more than 100 countries.

About The PGA of America

Since its founding in 1916, The PGA of America has maintained a twofold mission: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf. By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, The PGA enables its Professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion-dollar golf industry. By creating and delivering world-class championships and innovative programs, The PGA of America elevates the public’s interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. As The PGA nears its centennial, the PGA brand represents the very best in golf.



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Rookie Patrick Reed takes lead in PGA Tour’s Wyndham Championship

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PGA Tour rookie Patrick Reed shot a 6-under-par 64 to take a one-stroke lead at the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Reed, who is 23 years old, played his golf at the University of Georgia and Augusta State University.

He turned professional in 2011 and has played on the Nationwide Tour and Tour.

Reed is at 11-under 129 after the first two rounds.

Reed’s 64 was not the best round of the day. That honor went to John Huh who garnered a 62 to move to 10 under par.

Jordan Spieth is third at 9 under par with a 66 on Friday.

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