Coved-19. Golf Course Closed.

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Since the New Zealand Government imposed a lockdown on the whole county, except for essential services, like supermarkets etc, lots of businesses have already gone into liquidation, and many others are struggling, one casualty is our golf courses.

My course, Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club has been in lockdown for two weeks now, this means no maintenance, the groundskeepers are also locked out. This is utter madness, the greens and fairways need regular cutting, or in a very short space of time they will not be greens and fairways anymore. The company would then be forced into liquidation, unable to pay for a complete rescue of the  site from a wilderness back into a fabulous golf course once more.

All of this because the Government will not allow a couple of groundsmen to mow some grass, at least twice a week. There would be no social distancing problems, two men on  mowers cutting greens and fairways, with no else around on the whole golf course.

NZ Golf and the Government should get together and address this problem, pretty quickly, otherwise in a couple of months time there will be no golf courses left.

Is this happening where you are?

Josh Hinojosa. Professional Golfer.

White Dragon GolfWilson Staff

Professional golfer and owner of  along with contributing to Performance Academy Wilson Advisory Staff, Josh Hinojosa is happy with his White Dragon Putter, sending us this message on Twitter;

“Really starting to get used to the putter and feel comfortable with it. You were 100% correct about the length needing to be shorter, due to being more over the ball. I shortened the shaft this week at the shop and it immediately felt right. Went out today and shot 68 in barely above freezing temps. Very excited for the upcoming season!”

I asked him about the Winn grip:

“I put a smaller standard size Iomic on it, to try a lighter weight because of the shaft. I saved the Winn, using air, and will most likely put it back on. I liked it better for sure. The biggest adjustment for me has been getting used to the lighter shaft, that’s why I tried the standard grip. Snuck in nine holes yesterday and shot 3 under par.”

We wish you all the best for the upcoming season Josh.

 

 

Rory Out of Action; For a While.

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White Dragon Golf

This Looks Really Bad

What on earth was he thinking about?  running around kicking a ball playing soccer, when he should have been fully focused on the Scottish Open, and defending his title at The Open. He may not play golf again this year !!!

This is what he had to say on Facebook;

Total rupture of left ATFL (ankle ligament) and associated joint capsule damage in a soccer kickabout with friends on Saturday. Continuing to assess extent of injury and treatment plan day by day. Rehab already started….. Working hard to get back as soon as I can.

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Rory Will Not Be Able to Lift This Trophy in 2015 / Getty Images

LPGA Kingsmill Championship. Rain Delay Means Monday Finish.

White Dragon GolfKingsmill Championship

A rain delay has forced the Kingsmill Championship into a Monday Finish, with Minjee Lee leading, having completed 15 holes.

Kingsmill Championship

Minjee Lee / Getty Images

Minjee is part way through her final Kingsmill Championship round, having completed 15 holes and currently -7 under par for the round. Her tournament total is -16 under par, and she knew she was at the top, but just wants to get out there tomorrow and finish off;

“I knew I was right there, I still have some work to do tomorrow, but just kind of gave myself opportunities, played smart golf. I didn’t do anything crazy.  Just my putts seemed to drop.”

“Hopefully if I can get the win tomorrow then I won’t have to go to the U.S. Open qualifying.”

Nearest challenger is Alison Lee at -12 under par after 14 holes, and -2 under on her final round, four shots adrift with four holes to play, and realistically not much chance of catching the leader.

Alison suffered a nose bleed out on the course today, after some attention she carried on and made birdie on the next hole;

“I’ve had a nosebleed every day since I’ve been here, just happen to have gotten it on the course today.  Thankfully it didn’t last too long.”

“I know I’m going to have to play aggressively being four strokes behind Minjee.”

“I know exactly what I have to do tomorrow if I want to take this. It’s all up to me.  It’s me against the golf course.”

” No matter what Minjee does, I just have to play my best.”

There are five ladies tied in third place at -10 under par and do have some chance of catching second place Alison, but the way they are playing in does not seem feasible.

Paula CreamerHoo Joo Kim, So Yeon Ryu, Perrine Delacour and Suzann Pettersen, Suzann is in the clubhouse with her score.

Lydia Ko and Inbee Park have both completed their last rounds and are T16 at -5 under par for the competition.

More to follow on Monday.

LPGA Kingsmill Championship. Perrine Delacour Leads.

White Dragon GolfKingsmill Championship

Perrine Delacour, from France, leads the Kingsmill Championship in Virginia.

Kingsmill Championship

Perrine Delacour / Getty Images

Perrine carded a third round -4 under par 67 to lead the Kingsmill Championship after 54 holes with a -11 under par total. She is seeking her first LPGA Tour win, and has a strategy that could work;

“When I won the British Amateur, I didn’t have the game to win, so I just play every match and win every match, and at the end I win the tournament,”

“So I try to do the same tomorrow.”

Alison Lee slipped up late in the round with a bogey at the par four 16th, followed by a double bogey five at the par three 17th. She finished the day at -1 under par 70, for a -10 under par total, saying she mis-read some putts;

“I felt like I hit a couple decent strokes, I just misread it.”

“Especially coming down I think 15, 16, 17, I hit strokes that I thought were good, but it didn’t turn out as well.”

“I’m pretty sure that four‑putt on 17 will come back to haunt me later this week and tomorrow.”

” I learned a lot.  I’m just glad I finished under par today and just looking forward to tomorrow.”

Third place is shared by three ladies all tied at -9 under par for the tournament, Paula Creamer, So Yeon Ryu and Minjee Lee.

Paula was happy with her hot putter;

“You have to have a good short game and be able to bail yourself out at times.”

“My putter was hot and I gave myself some really good looks for par, even thought I had to save them. It was a crazy back nine, that’s for sure.”

“Playing in a final group or the last two groups, that’s always fun. It’s good to have my game where I want it to be.”

” I have a lot of confidence, even though I got to go work on some things, but this is fun.”

The battle of the big guns continues with world number two Inbee Park maintaining a one-shot advantage over current world number one Lydia Ko. They both carded -1 under par 70, with Inbee now at -4 under and Lydia -3 under for the tournament. They will have to play very well in the final round to make an impression here.

LPGA Kingsmill Championship. Joanna Klatten is 1st Round Leader.

White Dragon GolfKingsmill Championship   

Joanna Klatten is 1st round leader of the Kingsmill Championship on the River Course in Virginia.

Kingsmill Championship

Joanna Klatten / Getty Images

Joanna shot an opening round -6 under par 65 at the Kingsmill Championship, which included one bogey.

She carded five birdies in a six hole stretch, and admitted that there was an element of luck involved;

“I definitely had luck on my side today,  I had good breaks and it feels really good.”

“Lately, it felt the other way around, but I knew that it always evens out. Today, it definitely did.”

“Well, it’s nice because I haven’t had a very good stretch lately.”

“I mean, this is one of my favorite courses all year.  I feel very comfortable here.  It suits my eye really well.” 

Sharing second place at -6 under par are Morgan Pressel, Alison Lee and Pat Hurst.

Morgan played solid golf, not making many mistakes;

“I just played solid, I didn’t really make a whole ton of mistakes today, and the ones I did I recovered from nicely with good up and downs, a couple good ten footers for par, and was able to convert the birdie opportunities that I did have.”

“I am giving myself opportunities, and, I mean, I know that I’m capable of playing well.”

“I’m confident in my game, so I just need to carry that into the rest of the week and hopefully be in contention come Sunday afternoon.”

Pat knows she needs to be in the right place at the right time;

“It’s all about the angles out here and being on the right side of the fairway and the way you come into the greens and stuff.”

“If you’re hitting the ball good, it’s easier to put them in that spot.”

Rookie Alison is relying on her good short game;

“My short game was my strength.”

 “Being out here on tour as a rookie, I’m just getting used to everything out here and I haven’t been practicing my short game as much.”

“I have been trying to do my best to practice a little more of my short game instead of just hitting range balls and playing every day.”

Paula Creamer is one of the ladies who are two shots back at -4 under par, she carded five birdies in the first seven holes, but messed up with three bogies on the back;

“My front nine was awesome. Good birdie on 17 to come into the 18th hole. Hit my iron shot a little heavy, but I’ll take any birdies out here when they come.”

“Doesn’t matter how. Scorecard doesn’t have pictures.”

“I am very pleased with where my game is at, I have a good mental approach to things right now and I’m feeling good with my putter.”

“Just trying not to get in my own way and keep doing what I been doing in my next week off last week and see what happens in the next three days.”

World number one Lydia Ko shot an even par 71 on day one and sits in a tie for 40th place, while World number two Inbee Park carded +1 over par 72.

L.E.T. Buick Championship. Shanshan Cruises To Win.

White Dragon GolfBuick Championship

Shanshan Feng cruises to a win at the Buick Championship at Shanghai Qizhong Garden Golf Club.

Buick Championship

Shanshan Feng / Getty Images

A final round -2 under par 70 gave Shanshan the victory at the Buick Championship with a total of -17 under par for the tournament, a six stroke winning margin. A very dominant performance, and she is now predicted to move up to fourth place on the Women’s World Rankings.

Shanshan was pleased to win in China, and especially her own sponsors trophy;

“This is not my first time winning in China. I think this is my third time and second time on the LET. I’m really honored to win my sponsor’s tournament.”

She and her amateur partner Liang Zhang also won the team Pro-Am competition, which was running simultaneously over the last two rounds of the competition.

Hyeon Seo Kang finished in second place at -11 under par following her last round -3 under par 69. There was no way she was ever going to catch Shanshan in this competition.

Third place went to Nicole Broch Larsen with her tournament total of -8 under par, a -2 under par 70 last round made no dent in the massive lead of Shanshan.

Nicole enjoyed recording a career best finish in only her second year as a L.E.T. member.

“I came into this week with not my best game but I practiced a lot and it went well.”

“The first two days I didn’t make too many putts but Saturday was the perfect day. I shot seven under and holed a bunker shot and a wedge shot.”

“It was nice putting myself in this position and today started with four birdies in the first five holes, which was really nice.”

First round leader Stacy Keating, who started the week with a course record 63 tied for fourth place, along with Amy Boulden, Wichanee Meechai, Marianne Skarpnord and Margherita Rigon.

Amy thinks she was too bold with some of her putts, but will take away the positives from the week;

“The front nine I played solid golf. I was hitting it close and making some solid putts then on the back nine I just got a bit aggressive with my putts.”

“It was a good week for me. I feel like my game is in good shape and I don’t feel far away. I’m happy with my performance and I got better each round.”

“Although my score wasn’t as good today I got to five under and it could have been a really low round today so I’m just taking the positives away.”

L.E.T. Buick Championship. Shanshan Stretches Lead.

White Dragon GolfBuick Championship

Shanshan Feng stretches her lead in the Buick Championship to seven shots at Shanghai Qizhong Garden Golf Club in China.

Buick Championship

Shanshan Feng / Getty Images

Shanshan carded a third round -3 under par 69 to extend her lead in the Buick Championship to a massive seven strokes going into the final round tomorrow with a -15 under par total.

After the cut was made the leading 50 players and ties on Friday evening, the professionals were drawn with amateur partners for the additional team better ball competition being played simultaneously over the weekend,  a somewhat novel format on the Ladies European Tour which has excited both the professionals and amateurs.

Shanshan said she was initially apprehensive about playing alongside an amateur;

“I would say at the beginning I was a little bit nervous. It was my first time playing with amateurs in the same group in a professional tournament, so that was fun.”

“After a few holes I thought my amateur did really well, because he saved me maybe two shots on the first three holes.”

“He did very well and then I started to be more relaxed and make birdies. The bogey on the last hole was a little sad but I still did pretty well overall.”

Sharing second place are Hyeon Seo Kang and Marianne Skarpnord, they are both at -8 under par for the tournament.

Marianne said she had been putting very well, on the front nine;

“I’ve been putting well on the front nine, both yesterday and today but on the back nine it’s like it goes cold and I don’t make anything.”

“I had four or five putts within three and a half metres on the back nine and didn’t make any of them, so it was not completely useless but could have been a lot better.”

Charley Hull is in a large group back at -5 under par, with all thoughts of winning gone, she was happy to have some fun playing with the amateurs;

 “I played a lot better because I hit more fairways with my driver so it was easier for me to hole putts because there was less pressure on myself.”

“I enjoyed the format, because it was nice and not too intense playing with an amateur, so that was fun.”

 

AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open. Thorbjørn Olesen in Three-Way Tie at the Top

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Thorbjørn Olesen is in a three-way tie at the top of the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open at the end of day 1 at Heritage Golf Club in Mauritius. This the first event to be tri-sanctioned by The European, Asian and Sunshine Tours.
 AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open

Thorbjørn Olesen / Getty Images

Thorbjørn carded a -6 under par 66 to co-lead the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open on day one of the competition. He has been out of golf for three months, due to injury, but has burst back on the scene here in a big way;

“I’ve been waiting a long time for this, three months to play a competition round.”

“I was excited to get out there this morning. We had great conditions and I hit a lot of great putts, so it was fun.”

“Being out for three and a half months is a long time, especially when you can’t do anything. You are just doing rehab training, so it is frustrating. I’m excited to be out here again and I’ll be playing a lot of golf now.”

“I’m really pleased to be back out here on The European Tour and play competition golf. I’ve been practising hard over the last two weeks but you don’t know what it will be like when you get out here.” 

“I didn’t have the biggest expectations. I knew I was swinging the club better than I have been, but you never know what will happen, so I couldn’t be happier with this start. It’s an awesome start.”

“Having a break is very nice, but having a break because of injury is not very nice. You play so much golf so sometimes it is nice to get away from it and clear your mind, but I would definitely have preferred to have been without that injury.”

Joining Thorbjørn on that -6 under par score are Jeunghun Wang and Carlos Pigem .

Wang was really happy with his day’s work, especially in the  wet and windy conditions;

“I’m so happy with my score, the wind was so strong and the rain was very hard.” 

“I’m happy that I played like this and my putter was pretty nice today. The putter worked really well. 

“I’m enjoying my week in Mauritius. The weather wasn’t nice today but I want to keep my golf going like this.”

Carlos said his position on the leaderboard was quite unexpected;

“I didn’t expect to play quite so well because the conditions were tough, so I’m happy with my game.”

“It’s my third year in Asia. I played the European Tour Q-School last year but missed out at the final stage. It’s my target to be on The European Tour in the future and I know if I work hard I will be, but right now I’m enjoying it in Asia and learning a lot.”

“I have two or three more co-sanctioned events, and the Spanish Open next week, so if I can do well I might play more on The European Tour. It’s tough not having many events, but I will try.”

L.E.T. Buick Championship. Stacy Keating Shoots 1st Round 63.

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Stacy Keating shoots 63 in the 1st round of the Buick Championship at Shanghai Qizhong Garden Golf Club in China.

Buick Championship

Stacy Keating / Getty Images 

Stacy Keating, from Australia, posted a new course record of -9 under par 63, which included one bogey, at Shanghai Qizhong Garden Golf Club in the first round of the Buick Championship, to lead the tournament by two shots.

Stacy  actually carded 10 birdies, including seven in eight holes from the seventh, with her only bogey coming on the par four 7th hole. She reported that she had played very nicely, including putting very well;

“I hit the ball nicely from tee to green but I holed a lot of putts and got a bit lucky at times.”

“When it’s your day, it’s your day I guess, I had a bunker shot at the last and it hit the pin and finished right next to it whereas on any other day it probably would have run off the green.”

“I love the course, it’s in great condition and it feels like nobody has played it. I like China and it’s very easy from Australia with not much time difference.”

Shanshan Feng is in second place following her bogey free -7 under par 65, which was the new record until Stacy came along.

Shanshan was happy that they decided to water the greens the night before the start of the competition;

“I feel very lucky that they watered the greens last night because the greens were not as firm.”

“When we were playing in the Pro-Am and practice round, I could not stop the ball on the greens, even with my wedge.”

“I think today it really helped and I had a lot of birdie chances so overall I did pretty well.”

Xiyu Lin shot an opening round of -6 under par 66 to take third place on her own.

Lin said she was just trying to play conservatively, and putted very well;

“Today I didn’t really think I could have that many birdies: I was just trying to have a good strategy and trying to hit the ball to the widest place.”

“My putting was really good and I made all the birdies from three to five yards, because I didn’t hit really close to the hole.”

“There weren’t many mistakes. I made an 18 yard birdie putt on 16, so it was a good round apart from the last hole.”

There was some excitement on the course when  Victoria Lovelady .from Brazil, made a hole in one at the par three 16th,  using a hybrid 5 club to ace the hole from 187 yards, winning a Buick GL8.

Another feat on the day came from  Stacy Lee Bregman, who holed her second shot for an Eagle on the par-four 18th hole.

Strange fact is she actually called the play before she hit the shot;

“I didn’t play too badly and the score never reflected it. I said to my caddie, let’s finish strongly, because it would be nice not to putt.”

“I hit a gap wedge the perfect distance, 107 metres, and saw it roll into the hole. It’s always great to have an eagle to hole out for two on a par four.”