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Accenture Match-Play. Who Lost on Day 1

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The Accenture Match-Play tournament was most noted for who lost on day 1 of the competition, at The Golf Club at Dove Mountain.

Day 1 recaps: Accenture

Ricky Fowler / Getty

It was a great victory for Ricky Fowler, defeating legendary matchplay exponent Ian Poulter 2-1. Even Ricky thought Poults was on a winner;

“I was definitely an underdog coming in. Heck, if I was filling out a bracket, I would have picked Poulter, too.  It feels like a big win after those missed cuts, it was nice to be the underdog. I had nothing to lose.”

Another Englishman on the wrong side of the leaderboard was Lee Westwood, he was defeated by Harris English 5-3.

George Coetzee, fresh from his win in South Africa, defeated Steve Stricker, an unlikely result at the start of play.

Zach Johnson, coming back from a layoff, lost to Richard Sterne 5-4. Everyone must now wonder if the unenforced rest period was a disaster, as Zach was playing really well beforehand. Another loser on day 1 was Keegan Bradley, falling to Jonas Blixt 2-1. Luke Donald also packed his bags, losing 5-4 to Matteo Manassero.

G-Mac only just made it,  he was four down through seven holes, and still three holes behind with three to play, when he staged an improbable rally against Florida neighbor Gary Woodland

Daily Wrap-up

Graeme McDowell / Getty

Graeme said he was surprised to get through;

“I’m sure he’s extremely disappointed right now, and I’m extremely elated. I’m surprised to be sitting here, having won. Yeah, I hit a couple of quality shots down the last couple of holes, but he had mistakes, as well. It’s a brutal format. I thought it was over, you’re not coming back from 3 down against a guy that’s playing as well as him. Yeah, I’m still going to try to hit my shots. But it required a mistake from him to give me half a sniff, even. It feels like a Sunday afternoon on Wednesday.”

The big names that made it safely through include, Henrik Stenson, the number one seed here, Webb Simpson, Rory McIlroy, Jim Furyk, Sergio Garcia, albeit after 22 holes, Jimmy Walker, Justin Rose, Ernie Els, Jason Dufner, Matt Kuchar, Jordan Spieth and Bubba Watson.

     

The Presidents Cup. The Presidents Men Prevail.

A wounded Tiger Woods won The Presidents Cup, well he would wouldn’t he. Tiger has a habit of converting the winning putt in Team events. Tiger suffered with a back problem on the back nine and looked in pain on the last few holes.

Watch U.S. win Presidents Cup

Tiger Woods shaking hands with Richard Sterne, after he won the necessary point for the Americans / Getty Images

Tiger won a tight match against Richard Sterne 1 up, to clinch the 18th point for the U.S.A. and a win at 18½ points to 15½ points at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Ohio. He said it was a team effort and it felt good;

“It feels good. It was a team effort this whole week. We played well and had a nice lead going into the Singles.”

Amazingly Tiger also clinched the wins at Harding Park four years ago and Royal Melbourne two years ago for Fred Couples, who captained the U.S.A. team for all three of those wins.

American Captain Fred Couples simply said they had out-putted the Internationals, and would not be returning to captain the side again, three times was enough;

“We just outperformed them by making a few more putts. A three-peat is good enough for me.”

PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem will present The Presidents Cup trophy to the winning team in the media center interview room upon completion of play. This modified trophy ceremony will be held as part of the press conferences already scheduled with the two teams. The usual ceremony has been cancelled due to the inclement weather. The rain may have been a factor here in Ohio, but it has not dampened the spirit of the game, nor indeed the spirit of anyone who was involved, players, spectators and staff.

The Presidents Cup heads to Asia for the first time in 2015, the biennial competition will be held at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in the Songdo International Business District , Incheon, Korea.

The singles matches results;

Steve Stricker WINS  1 UP
match details
Ernie Els

Hunter Mahan

WINS  3 & 2
match details
Hideki Matsuyama
Jason Dufner

WINS  4 & 3
match details
Brendon de Jonge
Brandt Snedeker WINS  6 & 4
match details
Jason Day

Jordan Spieth WINS  1 UP
match details
Graham DeLaet

Bill Haas WINS  2 & 1
match details
Adam Scott

Zach Johnson

WINS  4 & 2
match details
Branden Grace
Matt Kuchar WINS  1 UP
match details
Marc Leishman

Tiger Woods

WINS  1 UP
match details
Richard Sterne
Keegan Bradley WINS  2 & 1
match details
Charl Schwartzel

Webb Simpson HALVED
match details
Louis Oosthuizen
Phil Mickelson WINS  1 UP
match details
Angel Cabrera

The Presidents Cup. Americans Ahead in Rain Plagued Ohio

The Americans are ahead in the rain plagued Presidents Cup event at the Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio.

On to Sunday

A happy Phil Mickelson & Keegan Bradley / Getty Images

Although the third round matches have not yet been completed the Americans are certain to take the lead going into the final round of singles matches tomorrow. Another rain delay kept the matches from finishing for the second straight day, so four matches will resume Sunday morning, followed by an early start to the 12 singles matches, because of even more rain in the forecast. Since The Presidents Cup began in 1994, no team has ever trailed going into singles and won outright. The United States Team currently lead by 11½ points to the Internationals 6½.

Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley were 3 down through seven holes when Phil made two big putts that led to them squaring the match through 14 holes, against Jason Day and Graham DeLaet.

Steve Stricker and Bill Haas went from 1 down to a 2-up lead through 10 holes against Adam Scott and Hideke Matsuyama.

Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar, who are undefeated in all three matches they have played this week, were 2 down against Ernie Els and Brendon de Jonge through nine holes.

Webb Simpson and Brandt Snedeker are 3 up through 12 against Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel.

Jason Duffer and Zach Johnson had already beaten Richard Sterne and Marc Leishman 4 & 3. Zach hit the shot of the day, holing out from the fairway on the par 5 fifteenth for an Eagle.

The foursomes will conclude tomorrow, but whatever happens the Americans are in complete control of The Presidents Cup.

International Team Captain Nick Price has not thrown in the towel yet, but The Americans wound up going 4-1 in the Four-balls in the morning session;

“We’re still in pretty good shape, if we can turn one of these games around tomorrow, it would make our life a lot easier going into singles. We had close games that went the U.S. way, we’ve still got another 17 points left. That’s what I keep telling the guys. They’re a little down after what happened this morning. The U.S. has really been unrelenting, they have just played superbly the last three days. Any slip from us and we find ourselves one or two down very quickly.”

 

 

The Presidents Cup. It Rained On The Presidents Parade.

It rained again on the Presidents Parade at Muirfield Village Golf Course, delaying once again The Presidents Cup.

Anybody's ballgame

Phil Mickelson & Keegan Bradley / Getty Images

The rain delay of 2 hours and 34 minutes could not stop Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradely romping home 4 and 3 in their foursomes match up against Graham DeLaet and Jason Day. 

Phil had this to say in interview about Keegan, and his hybrid shot over the water;

” Yesterday we just felt a fraction off but today we were on, starting on hole 5, we played some of our best golf together.I would be really worried about carrying the water with a hybrid, it was not even a consideration for him. .

Keegan just likes playing this format with Phil;

“I just think that when Phil and I get rolling in this alternate shot, we complement each other so well. And I was saying that I think that we both really enjoy kind of showing off in front of each other. Whatever Phil says, goes, I’m here to be his partner. It was amazing the theory that he had with the second shots into the par 5s, and they fit me a lot better. It really paid off today big time.”

American Team Captain Fred Couples summed it up thus;

“It was phenomenal golf.”

To even the score on the day  Ernie Els and Brendon de Jonge got the point back with a 4 and 3 win over Bill Haas and Hunter Mahan.

These are the only two matches that were completed on this soggy Friday in Ohio, play will resume again at 0735 ET on Saturday morning.

The American Team have a one point lead at 4½ points to 3½ points, with these matched still to complete:

Steve Stricker and Jordan Spieth have a commanding 3 up lead over Branden Grace and Richard Sterne through 14 holes.

Angel Cabrera and Marc Leishman are 1 up on Webb Simpson and Brandt Snedeker through 13 holes.

Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar are 3 up over Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel through 12 holes.

 Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama are 4-up over Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson through 11 holes.

Tough tasks ahead

The Captains, Nick Price & Fred Couples / Getty IMages.

If the yet to be completed rounds finish as they are at the moment, the difference will only be one point.

The Presidents Cup. America May Be Closed For Business, But Its Open For Golf.

The President may have closed America for business, but it is open for golf, with the opening round of The Presidents Cup taking place at Muirfield Village Golf Club, in Dublin, Ohio.

Jordan Spieth & Steve Stricker / Getty Images

Before the rain delay the American Team took control of The Presidents Cup, being up in five matches and square in the other. Play was suspended due to a dangerous weather situation, lightning and rain. Strangely,  the 90-minute delay worked in favor of the International Team, which before today hadn’t lost a Four-Ball session since 2003.

Steve Stricker, playing with Jordan Spieth, made a fantastic up and down from the greenside bunker on the  18th hole, to secure a one point advantage at the conclusion of play on Day 1. They defeated Ernie Els and Brendon de Jonge.

 Team U.S.A leading The Presidents Cup by 3 ½ points to 2½ points.

American Captain Fred Couples was delighted with the one point advantage, saying he could not have been happier for Steve to get that last important point;

” We rocked and rolled early, our guys came out firing. The rain delay obviously helped the International Team, which is fine. I couldn’t be happier for Steve Stricker and Jordan Spieth getting that last point.”

The International Team Captain, Nick Price, praised his squad for the way they fought their way back into the contest;

“I think my team made a great effort there coming back.”

Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar drew first blood for the American Team, as they beat Angel Cabrera and Marc Leishman by a very decisive 5 and 4 margin.

There had been some speculation about the pairing of Angel, who does not speak too much English, and Rookie Marc, who would probably have benefited better playing with someone who could speak to him and guide him through his first Presidents Cup round.

Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen pulled off the big upset for the International Team as they took down Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley, 2 and 1.

Muirfield Village Golf Club member Jason Day and Graham DeLaet, another International Rookie, came back from a 3 down deficit to beat Hunter Mahan and Brandt Snedeker 1 up.

Hideki Matsuyama  made a conceded birdie on the 18th hole to enable him and Adam Scott to halve their match with Webb Simpson and Bill Hass.

Zach Johnson and Jason Dufner raced into the lead, winning the first three holes in their match against Richard Sterne and Brandon Grace and they never looked back, beating the International Team 5 and 3.

The Tour Championship. Henrik’s Haul, 2 Trophies.

Henrik Stenson’s haul at East Lake Golf Course included two Trophies, The Tour Championship, by Coca-Cola and the FedExCup.

Comeback king: Henrik Stenson kisses the Tour Championship trophy

Henrik Stenson / EPA

Henrik won the Tour Championship by Coca-Cola with a final round -2 under par 68 and a total of -13 under par. In doing so he also lifted the fabulous FedExCup, the most prodigious and coveted trophy in the World of Golf on the PGA TOUR. It means you have topped the season long league points table, a most memorable and rewarding accomplishment. It was extra special for Henrik as he is the first European to win the wonderful trophy.

Henrik spoke about his incredible run,

“It’s been an incredible run, I don’t know what to say, I’m speechless. It was a tough day, absolutely, I mean, especially with so many things going on at the same time here. I kind of knew, well, even if I don’t win today, I could still win the FedExCup. Do you want to focus on that? At the end of the day, it was all about going out there and trying my best and try to win this golf tournament because then I knew I was going to leave with two trophies. That was the hard bit to put everything aside, as always, and focus on the right things.  I didn’t play my best round today, but I was hanging in there, took the right decisions.This is obviously the highest of everything, to win the FedExCup and win the TOUR Championship and win the Deutsche Bank two weeks ago. It’s been unbelievable. Yeah, it’s kind of sinking in more and more. To come back, that’s what pays off, the hard work.”

Second place was shared by Steve Stricker, the oldest player in the field, and Jordan Spieth, the youngest player in the field. They both finished the tournament at -10 under par. Jordan had an amazing final round -6 under par 64, and Steve a -5 under par 65, but they could not really put any pressure on Henrik on the day.

Jordan spoke about the pressure today, and his amazing rookie season;

” It’s been a dream come true. It was another round where I felt the same pressure I felt at the John Deere, at the Wyndham.  I really wasn’t looking at the boards. I figured he was up there a ways. He still had 15 to play. So that’s an automatic birdie for him if he hits the fairway.”

Steve was impressed with way Henrik had come back from a huge slump in his career;

“Henrik had a little blip on his screen there for a while, much like everybody. It’s nice to see that he’s put in the work and the energy and the time to get it back and to reach really the ultimate thing in our sport, to win the FedExCup.”

Webb Simpson was in fourth place on his own at -9 under par for the tournament. He had the best round of the day at -7 under par 63, a beautiful bogey free round of golf.

Tour Championship. Henrik Holds On.

Henrik Stenson holds to his lead at the Tour Championship, by Coca-Cola, in the third round at East Lake Golf Club.

Not as clear-cut as before

Henrik holding on / Getty Images

Henrik held on to his four shot advantage going into the final round, thanks mainly to his competitors playing worse than he did. Henrik managed to card a -1 under par third round to post -11 under par on the top of the leaderboard. Quite amazing really as he was nine shots ahead of the field after the first nine holes. Then it started to rain on Henrik’s parade as he sunk down in the mire with four bogeys on the back nine. Four shots is still a good lead going into the final round, but it should have been at least double that. His competitors can thank Mother Nature for the intervention.

Henrik also blamed the rain, and maybe on not being able to practice the back nine on Wednesday due to his wrist problems;

“It definitely would have been a comfier ride coming back in if it hadn’t started raining. It was tough to finish, and I hit a couple of bad shots, and it’s hard to find your rhythm again when you’re out in conditions like these.  “I know if one of the guys within the top five would win it, they’ll win it straightaway. I would have a chance to win it even without winning tomorrow, but I don’t know where I need to finish. It’s kind of hard to say it only comes down to me not playing the back nine on Wednesday, but I’m sure someone would go down that road. Of course I want to win two, trophies. If I can’t win two, I’ll be very pleased to win one. If I’m winning nothing, it will probably be not so sweet. But I didn’t have anything when I came here, so we’ll see what we’ll leave with. I think I’ll choose to look at it from the bright side, even though the weather is not that bright at the moment, started the day with a four-shot lead and I still got it. So that’s all that matters really.”

Dustin Johnson is in second place at -7 under par, a marvelous -3 under par 67 in the wet conditions pulled him right up the leaderboard as others around him struggled.

Dustin is confident he will give Henrik a good run for his money;

“If I keep driving it straight, then I’m going to give him a run tomorrow”

Third place belongs to Steve Stricker, at -5 under par, Steve’s third round score of -2 under par 68, was very reasonable in the circumstances.

Tiger Woods managed his first sub-par round in this event, a -1 under par 69 in the third round, he admitted he had not played well;

“I didn’t hit it very good today, I hit everything to the right or flipped it left, but I putted better. As I said that was the difference. I hit the best the first day and made nothing and putted better the last two days.  I kept hitting everything to the right. It wasn’t that far off, but it just kept spinning over to the right. At least I was able to putt well today. It was nice. I made some nice putts. It’s nice to get the week off  but I want to go in to the Presidents Cup playing well and shooting some good scores. The goal is to go out and shoot a low round tomorrow and see where the chips fall. I mean, my responsibility is to go out there and shoot a low one and see what happens.”

I don’t think even Mother Nature can stop Henrik from becoming the first European to win the FedExCup.

BMW Championship. 4th Round Play Suspended.

Fourth round play at the BMW Championship at Conway Farms Golf Course has been suspendedJim Furyk and his playing competitor Steve Stricker were among the 11 twosomes that had not yet started their final rounds.

See you on Monday

Jim Furyk / Getty Images

Jim spent Saturday night sleeping nervously on his one-stroke 54-hole lead at the BMW Championship, and he will have to do the same thing again Sunday night, as he never even got started on Sunday. Non stop rain had engulfed Conway Farms Golf Course on Sunday, which resulted in their being two lengthy delays to play. This ultimately forced a halt to the tournament with a suspension of play for the day. and a return to the golf course Monday morning for the conclusion of the BMW Championship.

Jim admitted he was anxious to get out there and play, if the weather permitted;

“Obviously I’m anxious to get out there and play, as is everyone else. But the good news is no one wants to go out and play in this, and slop it around in bad weather on a golf course where we’re playing the ball down and it’s probably a little too wet out there. At this point after sitting around all day, it’s probably a positive because it was looking like if I did get out on the golf course, it would have only been for a hole or two, and it’s tough to get real excited about that. Hopefully the course will dry up nicely, it’s going to be a different golf course tomorrow. It was real firm and fast all week. I expect that won’t be the case tomorrow with all the rain we got today.”

Slugger White, the PGA TOUR’s Vice President for Rules and Operations said;

“We’ve got maybe some scattered lake showers in the morning, but for the most part, we feel pretty good that we might see some sunshine tomorrow, it’s going to be better as the day goes on. Mother Nature just won’t give us a break here as far as shutting this faucet off,”

The final round is set to resume at 9 a.m. ET Monday morning, with Jim and Steve, his closest pursuer, scheduled to tee off in the last group of the day at approximately 10:40 a.m. ET. The forecast is favorable, so there should be no further delays.

Steve was thankful that he did not have to go out in the wet conditions;

“I think we got the better end of the deal by not even playing in it. It looked like it was pretty tough conditions for everybody, and cold weather and rain. I didn’t have to really go out and get started in it and come back in, all that stuff. So that was good, I guess, in that respect.”

Third placed Brandt Snedeker was disappointed;

” It was disappointing because you want to get out there and it’s the Playoffs and you’ve got one more tournament to go. You want to get out there and finish it on time. But I’ll be excited to play tomorrow.”

Zach Johnson in fourth place said he will need to adjust to the course conditions;

“I’m going to have to get a feel for the course early on and see exactly what kind of a plan I can have. There’s only so much you can do, maybe a little bit more aggressive, but yet you’ve still got to pay attention to how the golf course is playing. This course can bite you if you get too aggressive. It’s just one of those things you’ve got to roll with it and hopefully get the speed of the greens down early.”

It will be interesting to see who will make it into the top thirty at  the end of the day.

The BMW Championship. Jim Stays In front.

Jim Furyk followed his record breaking 59 with a more modest 69, but still stays in front at the BMW Championship at Conway Farms Golf Course.

Another fine day

Jim Furyk / Getty Images

Jim had a third round -2 under par 69 which gave him a tournament total of -13 under par, just one shot ahead of Steve Stricker. Jim was reasonably happy with today’s result, but said it could have been better;

“The goal was to go out and shoot a good number today, get myself in position to win this golf tournament. It could have been better out there. Obviously, I dropped that shot at 18, which I’m disappointed. It was probably one of the easier holes of the day. But I’ve got myself in good position, so rather than harp on the last hole, I’d probably tend to want to think about tomorrow and what I have to do to try to win a golf tournament.”

Steve Stricker is just one shot back at -12 under par, after his third round -7 under par 64 moved him into contention for the final round. Steve admitted he had a number in his head that he wanted to shoot today, he didn’t quite make it, but was happy all the same. The key shot for Steve was his sand wedge from 99 yards at the par 4 15th hole, he slam-dunked the shot for an eagle two. Steve also thinks the weather will a big part tomorrow, forecast is 90% chance of rain;

“I had a number in mind to start the day, which I typically don’t do, came up a little short, but all in all it was a good day. I’ve holed out a few wedges over my career, but I don’t know if any of them slam-dunked in that like. It’s a shock to see something like that go in.The weather is going to be an issue,

Third place belongs to Brandt Snedeker, a third round of even par kept him in contention, at -11  under par. Brandt was really disappointed with his effort today;

“Today was a struggle, hit it really poorly all day.”

Zach Johnson had a -2 under par 69, he is also within sight of the leaders, at -10 under par.

Next in line at -9 under par is Tiger Woods, Tiger had been penalized two shots for accidentally moving his ball in the rough when clearing away some debris. He did not agree with the decision;

“After seeing the video I thought the ball just oscillated, I thought that was the end of story. But they saw otherwise. We had a very good discussion, they replayed it again and again and again, and I felt the same way. It’s hard when situations like that happen, I had to fight, and I fought my tail off today, and I’m very proud of that, and I got myself back in the tournament. You know, there were a lot of thoughts going on Friday night, but the sun comes up in the east, and we start a new day. I had a nice little run to at least get myself in there where I have a chance tomorrow,

Deutsche Bank Championship. Henrik’s Highlight; Sergio’s Slump

Henrik Stenson won the Deutsche Bank Championship, a highlight of his successful season so far. Sergio Garcia slumped in the final round at TPC Boston.

Success for Stenson

Henrik Stenson / Getty Images

Henrik fired a final round -5 under par 66, to comprehensively win the Deutsche Bank Championship by two shots with his tournament total of -22 under par. In a good season of golf Henrik  was the runner-up in the British Open and a World Golf Championship, and he also tied for third at the PGA Championship. The win puts him at the top of the FedExCup standings. He said he was pleased to finally win a tournament;

“I’m just pleased I won here, this was a big goal of mine to win a golf tournament after all those nice finishes. My family is here. I’m going to see my kids in a little bit. It’s all good.”

Steve Stricker was in second place, at -20 under par, this was his third second place finish this year, and he has played his way into the The Presidents Cup team. Steve shot a final round of -4 under par 67 to secure the runner-up position.

Third place went to Graham DeLaet, his final round -2 under par giving him a total score of -18 under par for the tournament.

Sergio was one of four players tied in fourth place at -17 under par. He enjoyed a two-shot lead at the start of the final round, but sadly gave it away quickly, starting with a three-putt for bogey on the par-5 second hole. He missed several short putts and went out in 39, falling too far back to catch up. He ended up with a final round of  +2 over par 73.

Sharing that fourth spot with Sergio at -17 under par were, Matt Kuchar, Kevin Stadler and Jordan Spieth.

Jordan fired the low round of the tournament in his final round, a -9 under par 62.

The top 70 players on the FedExCup standings now move on to the BMW Championship next week, starting on Thursday the 12th September.

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