Monty in America.

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Monty in America is a great spectacle these days, especially as he has just won the  U.S. Senior Open, to go along with his victory at the Senior PGA Championship. That is two Majors in 2014 and he is looking forward to a battle royal against Bernhard Langer for the Charles Schwab Cup.

Monty won the U.S. Senior Open in a play-off against Gene Sauers, after he had come from four shots off Gene’s lead at the start of play to force the three hole play-off;

Monty and Trophy / USGA/John Mummert

“You talk about the Ryder Cup and one-on-one, I’m usually quite good. A play-off in a golf tournament is like a penalty shootout in the World Cup. You don’t know what’s going to happen.”

“It’s been a great summer, I’m really on top of the world right now. My play-off record is pretty weak, to be honest. I think I’ve been in 10 worldwide and won one of them up until today. I’ve lost in a play-off – 1994 – and been one shot behind a couple of times – in 1997 and 2006 – and you have to wait until you’re 50 to finally win one.”

“I have been made very welcome here on the Champions Tour and it’s a delight to come and play here on great golf courses. The weather is a lot better than it is at home and I’m enjoying it. I think if you enjoy something, you’re usually quite good at it, no matter what it is. I’m enjoying playing golf here in America in my latter years and thrilled and delighted that I’m able to do so.”

Monty has matured on the golf course these days, gone are the irritable diatribes against the gallery. A TV announcer once said that Monty could hear a fly fart from 4oo paces;

“I think I’ve matured on the golf course, I’m more patient than I was. I think I felt that in majors when I was contending that I had to play perfect golf, I had to go out and score 64 and it’s amazing the quality of the golf courses and the toughness of them, you don’t. You have to play intelligent golf and I think I’ve matured enough to realize that and play more within myself and sometimes to play away from some pins so you don’t make bogeys and you realize that in major golf pars are usually good enough, especially in USGA events.”

“To stay ahead of Bernhard Langer in any senior event you play in, you’re close to the lead. That was what I was trying to do all week was just stay one ahead of Bernhard Langer. And a great friend of mine,  Ryder Cup colleague of mine and great competitor. At 57 years old, all credit to him for keeping it going the way he does.”

Champions Tour. U.S. Senior Open Kenny Perry Peaks

Kenny Perry peaked at the U.S. Senior Open on the Champions Tour at the Omaha Country Club.

 

Kenny Perry / Getty Images

Kenny Perry shot a last round of -7  under par 63 to win the U.S. Senior Open by five shots from Fred Funk. Kenny amazingly over came a 10 shot deficit at the 36 hole stage, to win with a -13 under par score. This win is Kenny’s second straight senior Major win on the Champions Tour, and he wondered why it took so long;

” It all came together, why, after all these years.  Here I am, almost 53 years old, and it finally came together for me. This is by far the biggest tournament I ever won. I lost the playoff at the Masters and the PGA playoff. I didn’t get the job done. Now to have a USGA title, it’s an Open, it’s our Open, it’s what the players play for. To finally get it, even though it’s a Senior Open, I still regard it as a very high honor. Today’s round was probably the greatest round I’ve ever played, I just was spot on with all my irons. I putted like Ben Crenshaw. It’s just been a remarkable month. I’ve had a great run.”

Fred Funk was in second place at -8 under par, and admitted he got smoked;

He put it to us, six under yesterday, seven today, back-to-back. It’s kind of what he did two weeks ago at Fox Chapel. He just smoked the field on the weekend. He just lapped us.”

 Rocco Mediate and Corey Pavin were tied in third place at -7 under par for the tournament, but well off the pace of Kenny, as was everyone else.

 

Stacy Lewis, Roger Chapman and Rory McIlroy voted Players of the Year, by Golf Writers Association

Stacy Lewis / Scott Halleran

Stacy Lewis Roger Chapman and Rory McIlroy have been voted Players of the Year by the Golf Writers Association of America. Stacy won four times on the LPGA Tour this year and was the run-away winner in the women’s bracket, gaining 153 votes to Na Yeon Choi who carded 31 votes and 10 for Inbee Park. Stacy’s percentage was 78.8% of the total vote. Congratulations to Stacy Lewis.

Stacy’s record was three runner-up finishes and a third-place slot on the LPGA money list $1.87 million, and was the first American since Beth Daniel in 1994 to earn the tour’s Player of the Year honors. The 27-year-old from Texas, had to battle scoliosis, since aged eleven, to make it big on the pro tour, she also becomes the first American since Juli Inkster in 1999 to earn the Golf Writers of America Player of the Year award.

Roger Chapman won 116 votes beating Tom Lehman who received 44 votes and Bernhard Langer who got 33 votes.  Rogers winning percentage was a healthy 60% of the votes cast. Roger, aged 53, began the year with conditional status on the Champions Tour, but won the Senior PGA Championship in his first start of the 2012 season. The Englishman then came from four shots back of the leaders to win the U.S. Senior Open.

Rory McIlroy, who captured the money titles on both the PGA and European Tours, received 190 votes, a massive 97.9%  Brandt Snedeker was second with 3 votes and Tiger Woods third with just one vote. Rory had already won European Tour’s Golfer of the Year,cementing his season with five birdies at his last event of the year to win the World Tour Championship in Dubai. His other achievements included his second Major, the  US PGA Championship, PGA Tour’s Byron Nelson Award and PGA of America’s Vardon Trophy for adjusted low scoring average of 68.87%  and also finished the season with 10 top-tens in 16 starts. Rory is the World Number One ranked player.