The Open. An Irish Amateur Shares the Lead.

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An Irish amateur Paul Dunne shares the lead at The Open Championship with Louis Oosthuizen and Jason Day at the end of round three on Sunday, at a calm St. Andrews.

The Open

Paul Dunne / Getty Images

Paul Dunne shot a bogey free third round -6 under par 66, to share the clubhouse lead at -12 under par for the tournament. Louis and Jason both had -5 under par 65’s to join Paul at the top of a congested The Open Championship leaderboard.

Paul is the first amateur since the legendary Bobby Jones to lead The Open after 54 holes, Bobby went on to lift the Claret Jug at St Andrews in 1927.

Louis played alongside Paul, and this to say of the young mans talent;

“He’s played unbelievable golf, that second shot on 17 was one of the best I’ve seen.”

“I think he made me so nervous on my second shot because I was going a completely different route, low, running up there, and I tugged it a little bit to the left. But it was an amazing shot. He deserved to birdie that.”

Paul was asked if he could win The Open, he replied;

 “I don’t see why not. I’m well capable of shooting the scores that I need to win if everyone else doesn’t play their best.”

“Whether it happens or not, I can’t really control. I can just go out and try to play my game and see where it leaves me at the end of the day. Hopefully I play great again and post a good number.”

“It’s surreal I’m leading The Open, but I can easily believe that I shot the three scores that I shot.”

“If we were playing an amateur event here, I wouldn’t be too surprised by the scores I shot. It’s just lucky that it happens to be in the biggest event in the world.”

“Hopefully I can do it again tomorrow, but whether I do or not, you know, I’ll survive either way.”

In fourth place on his own is Masters Tournament and US Open Champion Jordan Spieth, who brought his grand slam dream back to life with a third round -6 under par 66, which has given him a tournament total of -11 under par, and just one shot back going into the final round tomorrow. History beckons.

Jordan insists he is not really thinking about it;

“It hasn’t come up in my head while I’ve been playing yet.”

“I can’t speak for tomorrow given it’s the last round and if I have a chance coming down the stretch, if it creeps in, I’ll embrace it. I’ll embrace the opportunity that presents itself.”

“I don’t look at it as a negative thing, I look at it almost as an advantage.”

“Why should it add more pressure in a negative way? If it adds more pressure, it just makes me feel like this is something that’s a little more special, let’s go ahead and get the job done.”

“I know it’s easier said than done, but when you say added pressure, most people associate that with negativity or something that can hinder what’s comfortable.”

“For me, I think it could be advantageous. You hit the ball a little bit further, you can really get your mind around a more specific target and block out other things.”

Fifth position belongs to another Irishman, the three-time Major winner Padraig Harrington, he posted a bogey free third round -7 under par 65, to reach -10 under par in the competition, and definitely has given himself a chance of grabbing another Major title. He joked with the media about this not being the final round;

“I always wanted to shoot 65 on Sunday at an Open. Unfortunately there’s another round to go.”

There are no less than nine players tied at -9 under par, in sixth place for the tournament; Australians Marc Leishman and Adam Scottanother amateur, American Jordan Niebrugge, Sergio Garcia from Spain, Justin Rose and Danny Willett from England, South African Retief Goosen, and two more Americans, Robert Streb and Zach Johnson.

Marc shot the low round of the day, a -8 under par 64, to put him in position to win his first Major.

Retief, the two-time US Open champion, was happy with his position;

“Three, four shots off the lead going into tomorrow is a good place to be.”

 “I’m feeling great. I have no back pain. I’d rather play bad golf and have no back pain than good golf and back pain and not being able to sleep or anything else.”

“I’ve had a good run in my career, but it’s nice to be up there and hopefully have a good day tomorrow, see where we end up.”

Longtime leader Dustin Johnson, who battled through the bad weather, collapsed in the calm conditions of the third round, carding +3 over par, and dropping to -7 under par for the tournament, and tied in 18th place, with his chances of picking up The Open Championship title in tatters.

AT&T Byron Nelson. Aussie Steve Wins Easily.

White Dragon GolfAT&T Byron Nelson Logo

Tie me Kangaroo down sport, Aussie Steve Bowditch easily won the AT&T Byron Nelson at TPC Four Seasons Resort. Winning this event is almost an Australian tradition, Adam Scott and Jason Day have both won in recent times.

AT&T Byron Nelson

Steve Bowditch & Trophy / Getty Images

Steve won the AT&T Byron Nelson with a -18 under par tournament total, a four shot victory, following his final round -5 under par 64.

Having his picture taken here again was a surreal moment for Steve and wife Amanda, they held their wedding reception here almost four years ago, and they have no plans to move away from the “No Tax” State;

“Pretty surreal feeling, taking photos on the green today was definitely the second best time I’ve had on that green.”

“I can’t see us moving anywhere else.”

“When it’s good, it’s good, when it’s not, I’m just trying to hang on.”

“Most of the time, it’s dry and it’s windy, so I think that is a little bit of an advantage for Australians, so to speak.”

“It’s just the way we grow up. But this week, I’m not sure. I guess everything clicked and it was my time to win.”

Amanda added her remarks about the wedding;

“It was fun to have them celebrate the wedding and it’s equally as special to have them celebrate this win.”

“It was a special day in our lives and this one is right there with it.”

There was a three-way tie for second place, all at -14 under par, Charley Hoffman, Jimmy Walker and Scott Pinckney.

Zach Johnson shot a -6 under par 63 to finish alone in fifth place at -13 under;

The hometown favorite with the gallery, and Masters champion Jordan Spieth stayed at -7 under par after his last round of even-par 69, T30;

“I really tried to soak it in today, I was getting frustrated this week just trying so hard, which is what I’ve done in past years as well. I don’t know if that’s going to stop in the future.”

 

 

Crowne Plaza International. Kevin on Course at Colonial.

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Kevin Na is on course for victory at Colonial, in the Crowne Plaza International.

Crowne Plaza International

Kevin Na / Getty Images

Kevin will take a one shot lead into the final round of the Crowne Plaza International at Colonial. He had a third round score of -1 under par 69 for a total of -11 under par. The tee times have been moved up again for tomorrow due to a rainy Sunday forecast.

Kevin thinks there is a low round hiding out there somewhere, and he is worried that the low round of the day will win the title;

“It’s out there but it’s hiding somewhere, it’s hard to find because you have to be so precise off the tee, second shots, putts and everything.”

“I know the hole locations tomorrow are going to be difficult. So honestly, I don’t really see a 61 or 62. Maybe a 63 or 64. Maybe.”

“Not as much fireworks as the first few days, but overall I was pleased.”

“I’ve had a pretty successful career except I think I lack in wins, I think it’s time for me to catch up to that number that I need to be at.”

Poults is seeking his first stroke-play win in the U.S. and will be in a good frame of mind if his team Arsenal win in the English Premier League tomorrow. He is currently in second place at -10 under par;

Crowne Plaza International

Ian Poulter / Getty Images

“It’s very easy to think too far ahead, there’s a few good guys right behind that are only a couple of shots off. I just have to focus on the first hole tomorrow.”

“I won’t be thinking anything past that, to be honest.”

“I can always deal with another plaid jacket in my closet. It will look just fine with my outfit tomorrow.”

“Hopefully we can get some golf in tomorrow, we’re going to have to wait and see what the weather’s going to do with us.”

Kevin and Poults are aware that they have lots of company in the quest to sport the tartan jacket, there are sixteen golfers are within five strokes of the lead.

Charlie Hoffman is in third place, despite his bad back, at -9 under par following his -4 under par third round of 66, saying it was the best he could have done;

“I probably couldn’t have shot much lower than I did.”

“I think we’ll play probably into Tuesday if need be.”

Defending Champion Adam Scott is trying to become the first player to successfully defend this title, Ben Hogan is the only player so far to do so, he actually did it twice.

Adam is four shots off the lead T10 at -6 under, but once again mentioned the putting;

“I’m going to need a round where they do all go in tomorrow, obviously it’s about giving yourself a lot of chances out there.”

“But you’ve got to make some putts, and as long as I keep hitting good ones, they might go.”

The organizers have made a 54-hole cut, to reduce the field to top 70s and ties. Those players who will not play on Sunday are; Jarrod Lyle, Harrison Frazar, Steve Wheatcroft, Chad Collins, Patrick Rodgers, John Peterson and Kyle Reifers.

WGC. First two Rounds.

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The first two rounds have been completed in the WGC Cadillac Match Play at TPC Harding Park, San Francisco.

Bubba Watson and Rory McIlroy are among the group who have played two won two.

WGC Match-PLay

Bubba Watson / Getty Images

Bubba said he was concentrating on playing solid golf;

“I’m just trying to play solid golf, no mistakes, that’s what I’m looking at.”

“You can’t look at what the other guy does.  I can come out here and shoot 5 under and lose or shoot 5 over and win.”

“It’s still golf.  Still gotta play good golf and that’s what I’m trying to do.”

Rory never trailed in his 2nd round match with Brandt Snedeker, but it did get interesting on the back nine;

“It was pretty tight, I felt like I had a comfortable lead after nine holes or 10 holes. And then he made two good birdies on 11 and 12 and we’re back to all square.”  

“I felt like the big key for me was the up and down on 14 for par, which was what helped me keep some momentum.”

On the other side of the coin Ian Poulter has played two, lost two, along with Adam Scott.

Rickie Fowler looked doomed, two down through 12 holes against Shane Lowery,  but made birdies on Nos. 15 and 18 to win, 1 up, a fine putting display unsettled Shane and delighted Rickie;

“Looked like I had complete control of it, didn’t I?”

“Been waiting a long time to make some putts, so it was nice to have those come in on the last few holes on the back nine.”

“I’m looking forward to building a bit tomorrow, work on the game, it was a little loose the past couple of days.”

“Luckily I made some good putts. If we can get everything clicking, it will be a very good weekend.”

I am looking forward to tomorrow’s matches, see if any of the double losers can make amends.

 

Adam Scott Back to Broomstick.

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Adam Scott is considering going back to the Broomstick Putter to try and win another Major, The Masters, again;

The Masters

Adam Scott and Broomstick / Getty Images

Adam Scott got to number one in the world, and won a Major, the 2013 Masters, all with the soon to be banned Broomstick Putter. He had recently reverted to using a conventional putter, but could not find one that suited him. Sadly he did not try a White Dragon Putter.

Adam thinks this is the only way he can ever win another Major, so it is the smart thing to do;

“Putting with a longer putter is maybe the smarter thing to do.”

“I don’t know. It’s all about the lag putting. It’s such a difference in weight of club and stroke and everything. I’m just trying to figure it all out.”

“It’s not exactly where I want to be, but it doesn’t matter when it comes to the Masters.”

“I’ve got two weeks and a really clear idea of what to work on.”

Do you think this is a small hint that Adam intends to retire from professional golf ? Why would you carry on playing if in your mind you can not win. Mental Attitude is everything, if Adam has convinced himself he has problems using a conventional putter, the chances of holing putts are slim, especially the important ones.

Personally I hope Adam uses a short putter at The Masters, and also that he continues to play great golf, as we all know he can.

Valspar Championship. Brian Davis Leads.

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Brian Davis leads the Valspar Championship on the Copperhead course at Innisbrook Resort in Florida.

Valspar Championship

Brian Davis / Getty Images

Brian had a fantastic chip in for birdie on the ninth green, his last hole of the day at Innisbrook for a -6 under par 65 first round which took him to the top of the Valspar Championship leaderboard.

Brian said after he hit the shot there was no reaction from the crowd, but he was happy after carding bogey at the two previous holes;

“Delighted, I expected a clap and nobody clapped.”

“The golf course was there, no wind and fairly soft, so you have to try to make your score today if you could.”

Ricky Barnes and Sean O’Hair are tied in second place at -5 under par, with opening rounds of 66.

Sean was happy to be back in the mix once again;

“The last two years have been disappointing for me, I lost really everything.”

“I lost my ball-striking and kind of lost my mind, lost confidence as far as how I play the game because I like to hit a lot of different shots and I got very swing-oriented.”

Adam Scott was going well until he suffered four straight bogey’s on the back nine, he finished with an even par 71 round, and he hopes the new redesign scheduled for the Copperhead course does not change it too much;

“Fell asleep out there for about 30 minutes.”

“Hopefully, they don’t mess around with the design too much because I think we’ve got a really good golf course here.”

 

WGC Cadillac Championships. JB Aces His Way to 5 Shot Lead

White Dragon GolfWGC-Cadillac Championship

JB Holmes carded an Ace on his way to a 5 shot lead going into the final round of the Cadillac Championships at Doral.

Cadillac Championships

JB Holmes / Getty Images

JB aced the par three 4th hole, which set him on his way to a -2 under par third round 70 at the Cadillac Championships, and a five shot advantage over the field with a -11 under par tournament total. He is certainly on course for a wire to wire win.

JB said this is a long course and you certainly need to plan your way around it;

“It’s a long golf course to start with, you’ve got to think your way around the golf course, and it’s really a ball-striker’s golf course.”

“Definitely there’s a few holes where you can take advantage of length, if you can get the driver and get it to go over a few bunkers depending on what the wind is, definitely can be an advantage.”

“I’m not going to change my game plan, obviously if you’re trying to catch up, you have to hit at a few more flags, but that just gets you in trouble out here.”

“So you’ve just got to be patient and try to make some pars and minimize the big numbers. That’s part of this golf course is just you can make a few birdies but you can make a bogey real quick out here.”

Dustin Johnson and Bubba Watson are tied in second place at -6 under par.

In a strange coincidence Dustin also Aced the 4th hole today, and said he will need a quick start to his round tomorrow if he wants to make a challenge;

“I could tell it’s going right at it from back of the tee but it kind of goes up and over the hump and I could hear them get loud.”

“Then obviously when they started screaming, I knew it was in.”

“I really struck the irons well, controlled my distance well, had great looks at it all day long.”

“Didn’t roll the putter all that great but overall it was a really good day.”

“This golf course is very hard, and just get off to a good start and try to get a little pressure on early”

“Just got to get off to a good start.”

Just yesterday Bubba was saying the course was way too hard for him to contend;

“I can’t stand the golf course. It’s way too tough for me.”

“Donald Trump, he put together a tough one for me and very difficult. Seemed like I was in sand all day, like I was back in Pensacola Beach.”

Dustin and Bubba are the only guys with any chance at all of catching JB, and he would need to card an awful final round to actually lose this title, because no one is going to go low, that’s for sure.

For your information, a scuba diver went into the lake today, during play, and  retrieved Rory McIlroy’s 3 iron from the depths, dont suppose he really needed it, the company would have replaced it, gratis.