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Ballantine’s Championship. Another Golfing Weather Delay.

The Ballantine’s Championship at Blackstone Golf Club in South Korea has started with a weather delay in the first round, wonder if its the same storm clouds that interrupted Harbour Town.

Louis Oosthuizen   (Getty Images)

Lewis Oosthuizen / Getty Images

There are currently five players tied at the top of the leaderboard at the Ballantine’s, all at -5 under par, with completed rounds of 67. there are still some players who could impact the top of this board, including Lewis Oosthuizen, who actually started his round with four birdies. Lewis still has two holes to complete, along with Tommy Fleetwood, both currently at -4 under par.

Lewis said he was happy with his start;

” It’s a good start, I’m hitting it really well. I made nice putts, hit it fairly close the front nine, and probably made one or two longish birdie putts. Then teed off on ten and the wind came in, with the weather coming in, and I probably just missed two shots and put myself in really tough spots to get up and down and then made bogey. But I’m feeling good, spinning it well, I haven’t hit it that well in a while like I did on the front nine.”

At the top are, Jean-Baptiste GonnetKieran PrattJohan EdforsMatthew Baldwin and local player Kim Gi-whan all completed their rounds after the delay of  two hours and ten minutes, due to rain and poor visibility.

Unfortunately there are no Americans contesting this tournament, the political tensions with North Korea have turned the competition into a no go area for them.

Jean-Baptiste was happy to be at the top;

” It was good to put my name up right away, because I haven’t played like this for more than a year. I played pretty straight off the tee, and my putting was great; five under is a good score.”

Another happy camper was Johan Edfors;

” I was really happy I came out of the block pretty good there on the front nine and played some really, really good golf.”

The first round will be completed tomorrow, before the start of the second round, lets hope for some better weather.

 

RBC Heritage. G-Mac wins in Play-Off

G-Mac, Graeme McDowell, won the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links on the first hole of a sudden death  play-off against Webb Simpson at Hilton Head Island.

Life's a breeze

Graeme McDowell / Lecka / Getty Images

Graeme and Webb both finished the RBC Heritage tournament at -9 under par, in very windy and inhospitable conditions.

Graeme reported how hard it is to win;

” This game kicks you more often than it gives you a pat on the back, it’s hard to win. I guess the weather was what the doctor ordered. I needed that to get close to the leaders. It’s funny the way things happen, I wouldn’t swap this for a top ten last week.”

The reigning U.S. Open Champion, Webb Simpson, had a chance to win in regulation play, but his twenty two foot putt for birdie went three feet past the hole and set up the sudden death play-off.

Webb stated that he had no confidence coming in to this tournament, but was convinced that the last putt was going in;

” I came in with not too much confidence, but I just stayed true to the process of what we’ve been working on. I never thought I made a putt more than that birdie putt, it was in. With a foot to go, it was in the left side. Coming back, that was a hard putt, because by the grain and the wind it’s supposed to break, but the regulation putt didn’t break. So I was kind of stuck with, ‘What do I do?’ I tried to play it left center. It broke. My caddie and I called 18 holes today 18 acts, as if we were in a play, just because you really cannot think ahead out there. It’s as hard as we’ll ever play.”

A dejected Webb Simpson / Lecka / Getty Images

Luke Donald tied for third place with Kevin Streelman at -7 under par, Luke admitting that the weather forecast from the National Weather Service advising of gust up to 45 mph were accurate, the worst playing conditions all year;

” Extremely difficult, strongest wind I’ve played in all year.”

The 54 hole leader Charlie Hoffman nose dived in the final round, shooting a lackluster 77, which left him tied in sixth place.

Charlie said he played OK, just did not make the putts he needed to;

” I actually hit the ball all right today, I just didn’t make the putts like I needed to make yesterday. It was tough conditions and I didn’t capitalize on the situations that I had. The shots I hit good didn’t turn out like I thought they were going to turn out.”

 

RBC Heritage. Davis Deserves Lead.

Brian Davis deserves the lead at the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head, after his super opening round of -6 under par 65.

Davis jumps out front

Brian Davis / Lecka / Gett Images

Brian Davis leads the RBC Heritage after the opening round, and once again is in contention in this event which he lost in spectacular fashion in 2010 at Harbour Town when he called a penalty on himself, and consequentially lost out out to Jim Furyk. Brian wants to win this tournament, so that people remember him for winning rather than conceding.

“I’d like to do something else in this tournament so I don’t get remembered just for that. People do remember it, but for me, I’m just trying to move on from that, and trying to win a golf tournament. I wasn’t worried about my score or about my misses, I was just playing.”

Tied in second place at -5 under par are Charley Hoffman and Kevin Streelman.

Charley thinks he has at last learned to play this course;

” I had zero success early here. I didn’t have the patience to play this golf course. Now I know which side of the fairways to hit it on, and now I can hit it on that side of the fairways sometimes.”

Personally I hope Brian Davis can go on and win his first PGA Tour event, he feels that Harbor Town owes him one.

Looking forward to tomorrow’s play, should be very interesting. Luke Donald has made a good start to this event, currently at -2 under par.

 

 

 

 

Carl Pettersson Wins RBC Heritage @ Harbour Town Golf Links · Hilton Head, South Carolina

Carl Pettersson won the RBC Heritage, at Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head, South Carolina. Carl had a last round of -2 under par 69, for a tournament total of -14 under par.

Carl Pettersson, Of Sweden, WavesThe Associated Press

Carl enjoyed his last round, saying how good it felt;

 “It was great. I knew I was playing well. I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself. I was kind of downplaying the whole thing. But getting off to a birdie on 1 was great. The whole front nine I played really good. I felt like I was being greedy; I could have been a couple more under. It was a tough day. The greens were really quick. I played good all day. I missed a few tee shots on the back nine, but scrambled well and bogeyed the 15th, which I managed to do the last three days. But it was good. It was solid, the swing felt good. I felt calm. It was a great feeling today.  I put in a new putter, I’ve used it on and off before, it’s a Nike Method long putter, and I used it in Houston, finished second there. I putted well all week. So it puts a nice roll on it. But I’ve used a long putter for 14 years. I’ll be back to the short one next year when they ban it.”

I was not aware that the R&A and The U.S.G.A. were going to ban long putters in the near future, have the authorities written to all the long putter users warning them of a pending change to the rules. Please let me know if you know something, I would be very interested in learning the details.

Zach Johnson was alone in second place, with a final round of -1 under par 70, for a tournament total of -9 under par.

 Zach Johnson HitsGetty Images

Zach spoke about his round today and the positives to take from it;

“There was a lot of positives. There were a couple of bumps along the road, but a lot of positives. Certainly some things that I can learn from and grow from. And I think overall I’m going to use this and hopefully build some confidence with it, and take it the rest of the year.  I didn’t putt that bad. I actually made some putts on the back nine that I think were pretty crucial. I’m certainly not going to put anything on my putter. My putter was awesome. I didn’t hit it great specifically on the back nine. A couple of wayward tee shots on the left, I’m not sure where they came from, but I’ll figure it out. All in all it was a good week. . I think Friday was probably the most benign day as far as the wind goes. This course doesn’t need wind to be hard. But when you incorporate some wind and these trees, you never know what’s going to happen. It’s very difficult. She’s a great test. And I love coming back.”

Luke Donald was resigned to surrendering No. 1 when he teed it up this morning, he simply said;

“Now, my focus is winning tournaments.”

I, for one hope that he does.

Carl Pettersson leads @ RBC Heritage at Harbour Town

 Carl Pettersson Hits                                                                                                                    Getty Images

Carl Pettersson leads the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town by one shots from Colt Knost. Carl had a -5 under par third round 66, for a tournament total of -12. Colt could only manage a round of -2 under par for a total of 69 and -11 under par tournament total.

Carl and Colt  chatted and laughed throughout the round, and appeared oblivious to the fact that both golfers were chasing a PGA TOUR title. Carl beamed in interview;

“Two fat guys played in three hours, 48 minutes. That was pretty good. But we had a good time.  I played great all day. I obviously started off really well with five in a row. And I kept going. Made a nice birdie on 10. Made a weak bogey on 11. I was just left of the fairway, but it wasn’t that hard of a shot, it hit the green. But I was fine with making five after the second shot. And I put myself in an awkward spot. But bogey on 15 was a little frustrating. But kind of got me fired up to play well coming in. And I managed to birdie the 18th, which was nice.

Colt Knost, who is chasing his first PGA Tour win, said it was his intention to have fun while still competing, he will partner Carl again tomorrow in the final pairing.

“I’m going to try tomorrow to have fun,” he said.

Lets hope he has a better start than the bogey he had on #1 today;

“I could have got rattled pretty easy after that start, but like I said, I’m really proud of the way I hung in.”

 Colt Knost SmilesGetty Images

Zach Johnston shot a -5 under par round of 66 to move into third place at -8 under, four shots behind the leader, Carl Pettersson. He was still hopeful of mounting a serious challenge tomorrow, he said;

“We’ve still got 18 holes, the last four or five holes, if I’m near the lead, we can get after it a little bit. I think there was a five to ten percent chance of rain today, but we got it. It didn’t really matter, it didn’t soften it up, and didn’t cause any effect on any shots. It was a good day. I got off to kind of a slow start and managed to right the ship. And made some nice, key putts.”

World number one Luke Donald could only manage a par round of 71 and remains at +2 for the tournament. He will  he will fall from World No. 1 after he finishes Sunday, surrendering the top spot to Rory McIlroy. It has been another sad tournament for Luke and he needs to right the ship pretty quickly.

Luke Donald, Of England, Hits

RBC Heritage, 2nd round @ Harbour Town

Colt Knost remains at the top of the leaderboard at the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town, Hilton Head. Colt had a -5 under par round of 66, for a tournament total of -9 under par. He leads by two shots from Carl Pettersson who fired in a -6 under par 65, for a total 0f -7 under par.

Colt cruising so far

Greenwood/Getty Images

Asked about his two days play, Colt replied;

“You know, it’s been a really solid two days for me. Definitely got on the lucky side of the draw with the wind. And I guess it was a little cold yesterday morning I heard. Very pleased with how I’m playing right now, striking it well, and making a few putts. I love Harbour Town, it’s one of the favorite courses all year. It sets up well for me and I’m looking forward to the weekend.  I’m just doing everything really solid. I feel like I’m driving it really well. I don’t know how many fairways I’ve hit or greens, but I know that I have not been in very much trouble. I haven’t short-sided myself much this week, which is huge out here. When I have missed the green I felt like I’ve been able to putt from the closely mown areas. I’m minimizing my mistakes. And I take advantage when I have a short iron into most of the holes. This place is still really tough. The wind started blowing at the end of the day today. It swirled so much out there, it’s hard. You never know where the wind is coming from. You know, the greens are so small out here, you can’t really play conservative. If you hit the green, you’re going to have 15, 20 feet. I feel like there’s a few holes you have to get through, like No. 8 for example is a tough one. 4 is tough. All the par-3s are very tough out here. It’s kind of like you take three on all of them and run. When I have a good number and it’s a green light to me, I’m going. These guys are going to shoot low scores out here. They’re too good. They’re way too good to play conservative. And I’m just trying to take advantage of my opportunities when I have them. And I did that for the most part today.”

Carl Pettersson, with the broomstick putter, is always happy to play at Harbour Town;

Carl Pettersson, Of Sweden,  Putts

The Associated Press

“I love this golf course. I’ve been coming here ten years. I’ve had some good finishes. I’ve also missed the cut. But it’s a great golf course, I really enjoy playing it. It’s probably my favorite one of the year. I’m always happy to come back here and play.  I’ve still got a long way to go. My game is good. In golf you still have two days, which is a long way to go in golf. I’m just happy to be playing well and hopefully have a chance on the weekend.  I’m feeling good right now. I’m enjoying playing. This is my favorite tournament of the year. So I’m excited to play well, and I always enjoy coming here.”

World number one Luke Donald came back today shooting a  69 and making the cut, unlike some of the other big names.

Back in the picture

Martin/Getty Images

Missing the cut were; Ernie Els, Padraig Harrington, Henrik Stenson, Jose Maria Olazabal and Mike Weir.

RBC Heritage, 1st round

Tied for the lead at after the 1st round of the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head, South Carolina are, Chad Campbell, Vaughn Taylor and Colt Knost. All three had a first round score of  67 for a total of -4 under par for the tournament.

Colt Knost commented on his late tee time today and early start tomorrow;

Colt Knost WatchesThe Associated Press

‘ It’s good. It’s good to take advantage of , it’s probably good in this situation. It’s normally a tough tee time to finish so late, and the greens aren’t quite as good as they normally are. I’m excited to go out and have a little better conditions in the morning and get after it. I heard it was cold and a little windy this morning. From what I’ve seen it’s supposed to be a little better tomorrow. If it is, it is, if not, but it wasn’t calm for us out there today. Our first 12, 13 holes it was windy and it was swirling around a lot out there. We got lucky the last few coming in, and I was able to take advantage of it”

Vaughn Taylor said;

It’s very difficult. It’s obviously a tough driving course. And then if you’re not on the right side of the fairway, your back is behind the wall. And the greens are firm and fast. So it’s tough. You’ve just got to kind of grind it out. You know you’re going to miss some greens. So you’ve got to do your best trying to get the ball up and down. I fortunately did a good job of that today.” And of his effort on the ninth hole, Vaughn happily recounted; ” I had exactly 100 yards to the hole. I was trying to decide between a lob wedge and a sand wedge, but I had a little bit of an upslope lie, I decided to go with the sand wedge and hit a smooth one. Came off right, right at it, and fortunate enough to go in.”

Chad Campbell was pleased with his round;

Chad Campbell WatchesThe Associated Press

 ” It felt like I’ve been playing better here lately. I got off to a great start today; birdied 2 and 4 and 5. It’s nice to get off to a good start here. It was a little tricky with the winds, and it’s always a tough golf course. Pleased about the way I played today.”

There are four players just one shot behind, Jim Furyk, Charlie Wi, Harris English and Matt Every.

Biggest surprise of the day was world number one Luke Donald struggling to a +4 over par round of 75.

Luke Donald HandsThe Associated Press

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