Matt Every’s dope drug suspension is not going to go away easily, it is rumbling on due mainly to the bizarre interview with the Golf Channel’s Kelly Tilghman. Every maintains that who his friends are and what they do are of no concern to anyone, well he is definitely wrong. His 2010 arrest for marijuana possession and the defensive statement that; “ Honestly, man, I know more people who smoke marijuana than who don’t smoke marijuana”, could seriously hamper his attempts to garner the endorsements that line the pockets of PGA pros. Every needs to concentrate on some exceptional public relations, starting with distancing himself from the bunch of so called friends who think drugs are OK. His image and credibility have been damaged he’ll need to learn a bit of proper image strategy. No wonder he is desperate for this episode to fade away, but unfortunately for him every time his name appears at the top of a leader board this silly story will rear its ugly head.
Another sad story surrounding the Sony Open is the verbal set to between Vijay Singh and Rory Sabbatini, who himself is no stranger to controversy. It seems Sabbatini’s caddy, Mick Doran, moved into Singh’s eyeline while he was attempting to putt. V J missed the putt and had words with Doran about the ungentlemanly conduct. At this point Rory vigorously defended his caddy. After the round V.J. said the row was over and it was forgotten. Sabbatini disagreed at demanded Singh apologise to his caddy. I think that’s a bit rich, he should rather be telling his caddy to stand still while other people are putting.
Montford Johnson Wagner won the Sony Open at Waialae Country Club in Hawaii with a last round of -3 to finish with a total score of -13, two ahead of his nearest competitors. He grew his moustache at Thanksgiving and will now keep it in place for the next tournament, hoping it will bring him more luck.
Finishing at -11 under par were; Carl Pettersson, Sean O’Hair, Harrison Frazar and Charles Howell the Third. The two leaders at the start of play for the day both had over par rounds, Matt Every was 2 over and finished on -10, alone in 6th place. The 46 year old Jeff Maggert collapsed to record a 4 over par to finish with a total score of -8 and tied for 13th place.
Webb Simpson had a disappointing tournament finishing tied 38th, along with last weeks winner Steve Stricker both ending with totals of -4.
He had a little moment on the last green, but came through it smiling, he said afterwards;
‘I was a little shaky on the last, ‘to leave that birdie shot short was a little pathetic but I knew I was safe.
‘I’m really excited. I’ve worked so hard in the off-season with my trainer, my caddie, and I told everyone I was going to win early this year. It feels good to have done it.’
Matt Every really stood relatively still shooting a -2 under 68 on Saturday, and goes into the final round tied with the now 47-year-old Jeff Maggert. Jeff fired a bogey-free round 64 in unusually calm conditions at Waialae Country Club , making an eagle on the easy par-5 ninth for the second straight day. That superb round tied Matt Every for the lead leading into the last round tomorrow. A good last round would give Jeff a chance to win on tour for the first time in nearly six years. He is closing in on the Champions Tour but this resurgence on the main tour is due mainly to the fact that he finally took care of a bone spur in his right shoulder that has been bothering him for the last few years.
Matt Every has not had an easy time this week, surviving an awkward interview with Golf Channel after his 64 on Friday. He was defending his comments about his arrest on a misdemeanor marijuana possession charge at the John Deere Classic in 2010, he said, ”I’m just ready to get it over with.”
One strange fact this week is that Webb Simpson has not finished out of the top 10 since the Tour Championship, but he goes into the final round in Waialae in a tie for 61st and has a massive task to get into the top ten of this tournament.
Photo by Marco Garcia / Associated Press
Highlight of the Joburg second round was Englishman Richard Finch firing a hole in one at the par three 12th. Strangely enough he was not too pleased to achieve the feat, if it had come during the last round it would have earned Richard a million rand for the effort. Finch’s hole-in-one helped him into a share of the lead at the Joburg Open, sharing that position with Robert Rock and George Coetzee at the tough Royal Johannesburg and Kensington East Course.
Finch said of his hole in one, ”On 12 I looked at the back of the tee and read the board which said there was a million rand available for a hole-in-one in the final round. As my shot landed I turned around and said ‘Oh no!’ because I had hit it on the perfect line.” ”Some of Darren Fichardt’s family and friends were at the green and they started cheering, so it was clear it had gone in.” ”I made one at Humewood a few years ago during the SA Open. It was sponsored by South African Airways, so I won a million air miles, which was nice.”
Richard was also delighted with his second round effort, ”Starting today at five-under-par was interesting, a few birdies and you’re right up there amongst the lead, but a couple of bogeys and you miss the cut. But I’m delighted with today, I thought some of the pins were really tucked away, so I just tried to be sensible and get it on to the green to give myself a chance. I managed to roll a few in, which was good,”
Matt Every has a two-shot lead at the halfway mark of the US PGA Tour event at Waialae Country Club in Honolulu. Matt who, I hear you asking. Matt Every is the American who made headlines in the summer of 2010 for being arrested on a misdemeanor marijuana charge in a hotel room during the John Deere Classic. At the time he denied possessing or using marijuana and the charges were eventually dropped, though he was suspended for three months for ‘conduct unbecoming a professional’. A strange decision by the PGA but one that Matt excepted.
“I’m not mad at the tour, they did what they had to do”. ”I don’t do drugs. It was a crappy deal. Wrong place, wrong time, perfect storm and I got three months out of it,”
“I still hang out with the s upame people. If one of my friends likes to smoke marijuana every now and then I’m not going to say, well, you can’t be my friend anymore”
“Honestly, I know more people who smoke marijuana than those who don’t” “I know that’s probably not the politically correct thing to say, but it’s the truth.
“I don’t do it, but I don’t frown upon it.”
Every backed up his opening round 66 with a six-under par 64 to move to 10 under for the tournament, and that has given him a two-stroke advantage over David Hearn (66) and Carl Pettersson (67) who sit at eight under.
The best placed Australians are John Senden (67) and Gavin Coles (66) who are in a tie for 17th place, five shots off the pace. John Senden opened with a birdie but then had a couple of bogies before racking up four birdies in five holes to find himself in the thick of the tournament.
Kiwi Danny Lee’s first event as a full-time PGA Tour member ended prematurely with a missed cut at +3.
Photo / AP
Last weeks winner Steve Stricker had a steady first round at the Sony Open in Hawaii, shooting a -4 66 to be just three shots behind the leader. Graham DeLaet has the honor of being the first round leader firing a -7 63 he is playing under a medical exemption this year, just twelve months after major back surgery. what a round to announce your return to the tour.