Will Tiger Woods win a major in 2013?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Tiger Woods, a cheater?

The Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee wrote a recent piece giving grades to different golfers for their performances in 2013.

On Tiger Woods, Chamblee gave him an 'F' for Woods' leniency with the rules this past year. He basically called him a cheater.

To find out more on this story, check out tomorrow's Bradenton Herald for the column.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Sarasota Open field set

Logo provided.

The West Florida Golf Tour's major championship, the Sarasota Open, debuts Thursday at Laurel Oak Country Club.

The four day, 72-hole tournament pits top mini-tour pros from the area against each other in a competitive stroke play event prior to many attempting to secure passage to the PGA Tour next season through Q-School, which gets underway soon.

For more on this story, check out tomorrow's Bradenton Herald.

For pairings, click here.

Manatee County Amateur Championships begins Friday

The Manatee County Amateur Championships begins Friday at Manatee Golf Course.

The three-day, 54-hole tournament shifts to Buffalo Creek Golf Course for Saturday's round and then heads to River Wilderness Golf and Country Club for Sunday's final round.

For more on this story, check out tomorrow's Bradenton Herald.

The first round pairings can be found here

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Juniors: Philip Knowles captures junior tourney comfortably

Bradenton's Philip Knowles wrapped up an impressive summer slate with a five-shot victory at the Sam Parks Junior Invitational at Belleair Country Club this past weekend.

Knowles fired a 65-68--133 total for the title in the boys 16-18 year old division. It completed a summer schedule that saw some successes, including finishing runner-up in the Florida State Amateur Match Play Championship.

Now the Bradenton Christian junior is turning his attention to the fall high school golf season.

For more on the high school golf landscape for the 2013 season, check out tomorrow's Bradenton Herald.

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Monday Recap: FedEx Cup begins with a bang

Adam Scott, who shed the stinging defeat at the 2012 British Open from his memory bank in capturing this year's Masters title, took an important first step toward winning the FedEx Cup this past week.

The Australian fired a bogey-free 66, before watching each challenger misfire on forcing a playoff in capturing The Barclays championship in New Jersey.

Scott's final round produced an 11-under par total, while England's Justin Rose (three-putt on the 18th), Tiger Woods (birdie putt inches short on the 18th) and Gary Woodland (putt just short on the 18th) each missed a chance to force a playoff.

The end result is more important than the $1.44 million first-place prize, if there is such a thing. Yes, there is and that is the race for the FedEx Cup title. Scott's victory earned him valuable points, pushing him to No. 2 on the list. He's 162 points behind Woods following his second win of the year.

Despite not winning more tournaments, Scott has played well when it's counted the most. Besides the major championship he claimed to begin this season, Scott tied for third at the British Open and tied for fifth at the PGA Championship.

The latter came on the heels of the FedEx Cup race, and now he's heading to the site of his inaugural PGA Tour victory. Scott won the Deutsche Bank Championship in 2003, and is having a breakthrough season 10 years ago with the chance to add to his win total. Should he accomplish the feat of winning back-to-back, he'll be in prime position to win the FedEx Cup, which has three events remaining in the playoff portion of the schedule that includes this week's tour stop at TPC Boston.

Only the top 100 players in the standings advanced to this week's tournament. The top 70 progress to the BMW Championship, slated for mid-September, before the top 30 qualify for the Tour Championship.

Friday, August 9, 2013

PGA Championship: Woody Austin's error

We've all brought extra clubs to the course at one time or another without regard in a friendly round.

But when you do it in a competitive round, it sure can hurt your score in a heartbeat.

So when Woody Austin began his second round of the PGA Championship at Oak Hill on Friday,  nothing was askew. But Austin failed to keep a bulky out of his bag that already was at the maximum of 14 clubs. That's a big no-no when it comes to the United States Golf Association's rulebook.

And thus Austin was assessed a two-shot penalty for each hole that the extra club remained in his bag.

The total damage after it was discovered on the third hole was four shots - the maximum for the rule breach.

Austin shared in the responsibility for the miscue, which wasn't noticed until the third hole due to a rain cover blanketing the clubs to keep them dry from Mother Nature.

Austin posted a 75, which left him at 4-over par for the championship after his opening 1-under par 69.

He missed the cut as a result, and would have made the weekend if not for the four-shot penalty.

It's not the first time the mistake has happened in major championship golf. The last time, and probably the most famous outburst in golf, came from Ian Woosnam in the 2001 British Open.

Here's a clip from the mistake that cost Woosnam some momentum and a chance at the Claret Jug:

Hopefully, Austin's caddy doesn't meet the same fate as Woosnam's did following that fateful final round in '01. (Hint: he was fired).

Thursday, August 8, 2013

PGA Championship: Early first round reflections

Glory's Last Shot, oh wait, that moniker was dropped for this year's PGA Championship at the PGA Tour's request.

So what we have is the final major championship getting underway in Rochester, N.Y., at Oak Hill.

Tiger Woods was the prohibitive favorite entering this week on the heels of the victory he secured last Sunday in Akron, Ohio at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

However, some early reflections from the PGA Championship's first round show Woods didn't get off to the start everyone expected. Instead of putting a strong round together, Woods faltered late and posted a 1-over par 71.

Currently, he's six shots behind two men: Jim Furyk and Masters champ Adam Scott.

And while that's not an inconceivable margin to make up over three rounds, the telling stat is this: there are 40 golfers under par at the present time and a total of 58 players ahead of him on the leaderboard.

That's a large number to get by, but Woods is capable of such a feat. So yours truly isn't counting him out of the running just yet. It just means he'll need to figure things out a bit more when Friday's second round rolls around.

Another thought from Thursday's opening round is how Scott has elevated his game this season. After such a heartbreaking performance at the 2012 British Open, Scott could have packed it in and never competed again on the big stage. Instead, he became the first Australian to ever win the green jacket when he caught some late magic at Augusta National for his first major championship.

He also played well at this year's British Open for awhile, despite not walking way with the Claret Jug (that went to Englishman Justin Rose).

Another musing is two-fold: Phil Mickelson is trying to string together a solid start after a tough beginning, and where on Earth has Paul Casey been hiding?

Casey, who ascended to a career-best No. 3 world ranking in 2009, has plummeted to just inside the top 100 in the world coming into this week's tournament.

Yet the Englishman is tied for fifth in the early going after a superb 3-under par 67 leaves him just two off the lead.

However, Casey hasn't put four strong rounds together in majors this year. At the U.S. Open, he was having a respectable tourney until a 79 dropped him into a tie for 45th place. How about the Masters and British Open? Casey didn't play in either.

But that 67 is a solid start for the former world No. 3.

Meanwhile, Mickelson's bid for a second straight major title began in horrendous fashion as Lefty bogeyed and double-bogeyed Nos. 3 and 4, respectively, en route to a 2-over par 37 on the front nine.

Mickelson, though, has birdied three of four holes and is currently playing a par-5 on the back nine.