CME Group Tour Championship. Cristie Kerr Wins.

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Cristie Kerr wins the CME Group Tour Championship in Florida.

 CME Group Tour Championship

Cristie Kerr / Getty Images

Cristie had a final round -4 under par to win the CME Group Tour Championship with a -17 under par total, a one shot win in the end of year tournament. She said it did not look good earlier in the round, missing putts;

“It’s pretty cool. It’s a lot of different honors.”

“That’s what the year end is about. It feels pretty cool to win the last tournament of the year.”

“Didn’t seem like a whole lot was going my way early.  All of a sudden at the end, I was there when I needed to be.”

“I knew that I was leaving putts short and I knew I had to get it there.”

“When it left my putter and it was going towards the hole, I’ve had so many that were in the heart of the hole that I left a foot short this week.”

” It just kept going and I was like get there, get there, get there.  It went in and I was like, this was the first bit of momentum I’ve had almost all day.” 

Gerina Pillar and Ha Na Jang shared second place, just one shot back at -16 under par. Gerina with a last round -5 under 67 and Ha Na -3 under 69.

World #1 Lydia Ko finished with -11 under par, but still claimed the $1 million dollar Race to the CME Globe for the second consecutive year. Lydia is also the 2015 Player of the Year and tops the money list.

World #2 Inbee Park was one shot ahead of Lydia at the end, -12 under. She has the Vare Trophy for 2015 with the lowest scoring average for the season. With that she earns the 27th and final point needed to earn her way into the LPGA Hall of Fame.

CME Group Tour Championship. Kerr & Jang Share Lead.

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Cristie Kerr and Ha Na Jang share the 54 hole lead at the  CME Group Tour Championship in Florida.

 CME Group Tour Championship.

Cristie Kerr & Ha Na Jang / Getty Images

These two ladies share the top spot on the  CME Group Tour Championship leaderboard, at -13 under par for the 54 holes played. Ha Na carded -3 under par 69, while Cristie raced up the leaderboard with her -6 under 66.

Cristie started her day with a bogey at the par five 1st hole, and then recovered to shoot the low round of the day;

“I played great.  I had one little kind of hiccup on the first hole where I had a very makeable birdie putt, about 12, 13‑footer.”

” I got very aggressive with it and got caught on one of the grains.  It was actually up to speed and little faster, so it kind of went by the hole and I missed it and was kind of miffed about it.”

“Maybe that lit a fire under me a little bit.  I got it right back on the next hole and made a lot of birdies on the front and had a lot of chances on the back.” 

“I feel fresh and kind of ready to perform, I don’t feel like this is the last tournament of the year for me.”

“It feels like there’s a couple left. Hopefully that can carry me through tomorrow.”

Ha Na is still overthinking everything;

“I think today too much thinking when I’m playing golf.”

“I want tomorrow very simple.  My thinking is a little changed in my mind.  So a little comfortable with my shot tomorrow and then I don’t want to think about the score and other players.”

” Just playing myself, so that’s it.”

Gerina Pillar and Lydia Ko share third place, at -11 under par, just two shots back of the leaders;

Lydia -3 under 69 today and Gerina -5 under par 67.

Lydia still really wants to defend both her titles;

“I mean, it would be awesome, when you defend something or do something back-to-back, it’s always cool to do that.”

Her main rival Inbee Park is now four shots back of the leaders at -9 under and two behind Lydia, and will need something really special;

“We both had really, really good seasons and somebody is going to become 1 and somebody is going to become 2.”

“That’s just the way it is. I’m just trying to tell myself I had a really good enough season this year.”

“I’ve earned what I wanted to earn, what I wanted to achieve. The rest is just a bonus.”

CME Group Tour Championship. Ha Na Leads Lydia.

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Ha Na Jang leads Lydia Ko in the CME Group Tour Championship at the Gold Course of Tiburón Golf Club in Naples, Florida.

CME Group Tour Championship

Ha Na & Lydia / Getty Images

Ha Na carded -7 under par 65 to top the CME Group Tour Championship with a tournament total of -10 under par. She is looking for her first career LPGA win, after posting three runner-ups already this season;

” My first thinking is maybe in the Marathon Classic. I played a playoff with Chella Choi my first time.”

“I thought of too much, I want to be champion.”

“So I don’t want to think about being leader. So I just play myself, that’s my thinking to myself, too. I don’t want to think about being champion.”

Lydia is in second place at -8 under, a -5 under-par 67 today easing the pressure from behind from Inbee Park, in the Race to the Globe;

“Just watching the coverage when I went back to hotel and the Race placing, too. So it wasn’t like intentionally looking.”

“It’s right there, it’s not like I got to cover and go, but, yeah, my trainer and I always say, hey, better every day.”

“It’s what I try and work towards too. If I keep getting better every day, it ends up being a few low scores.”

A year ago Lydia trailed the leaders by five shots entering the weekend here, and overcame the deficit to win in a play-off. Very exciting stuff to watch, but I am sure the defending champion would be happier with a straight win this time around.

Second placed in the Race to the Globe, Inbee Park is now four shots back of Lydia and Stacy Lewis, in third position is six shots behind in this competition.

Cristie Kerr and Jennifer Song are just three shots back of Ha Na and one behind Lydia in a tie for third at -7 under-par in the CME Group Tour Championship tournament.


CME Group Tour Championship. Austin Ernst Leads After Round One.

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Austin Ernst leads the CME Group Tour Championship after round one on the Gold Course of Tiburón Golf Club in Naples, Florida.

CME Group Tour Championship

Austin Ernst / Getty Images

Austin carded a first round -6 under par 66 to lead the CME Group Tour Championship. Although she isn’t one of the nine players with a shot at the $1 million Race to the CME Globe, a win here would do nicely. If her putter stays hot she will gain confidence;

“Really, I’ve just been a little up and down with the putter.”

“I hit the ball well today. Gave myself a lot of good looks and made a lot of them.”

“I think I had eight birdies today. Obviously get a round like that, where I get confidence with my putter, that’s normally when I have my good weeks.”

Mi Hyang Lee is in second place, on her own at -5 under par.

There are six ladies at -4 under, Gerina Pillar, Jayne Marie Green, Cristie Kerr, Brittany Lincicome, Sei Young Kim and Jennifer Song.

Sei Young is trying not to concentrate on the huge Million Dollar purse on offer;

“I’m very excited, it’s my dream. It’s come almost true.”

“I try on the course not to think about it, it’s just step by step.”

“That’s very important to me to keep my mind in the game.”

World No. 1 Lydia Ko is not far behind with a -3 under par 69, she won both the CME Group Tour Championship and Race to the CME Globe titles here a year ago, and held the top spot in this years race coming into this tournament;

“I think it’s better than last year.”

“If you think about it, it might be more on the line this week than at Evian.”

“I have got to think of it as another tournament. That’s what I said for all the majors.”

“I’ve got to focus on one shot at a time and not think of it as it’s a major so it’s more special.”

“Obviously it is at the end of the day, but it’s another tournament.”

“We’ve got the world’s best golfer and the top players are here. I mean, it’s a great field, so in a way it does feel like a major.”

“With everything that might come along on Sunday, might be even more than that. I just got to say, hey, hit good shots.”

World  No.2 Inbee Park, and was second in the race, carded a first round -1 under par 71, and is currently T22 in the Tour Championship.


The Players. Day 2. Two Tied at the Top

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There are two players tied at the top of The Players, Jerry Kelly and Kevin Na both had good rounds today, while some big names failed to make the cut.

The Players

Kevin Na / Getty Images

Kevin and Jerry hold a two shot lead at -8 under par for 36 holes at The Players at TPC Sawgrass in Florida.

Jerry with a magnificent -7 under par 65 against Kevin’s more modest -3 under par 69 to both get to -8 under par for the tournament.

Kevin has overcome a terrible bout of “The Yips” which at times prevented him from taking the club back;

“I had the yips, that’s what it was.”

“A lot of the guys when you have that, they fall off the planet.”

“They play poorly and nobody really sees and hears about it. But the weird case was, I was playing some of my best golf and I couldn’t take the club back.”

“How does a guy not take the club back every time he hits it, and it goes down the middle?”

“I don’t know. Do you want to open up my brain and check it out? I don’t know. I try to not think about it. I got over it.”

“Having the yips, I think because I went through that, I’m a better player now.”

“I hope people get over that and see me as just a guy that’s playing well on TOUR versus a guy that couldn’t take the club back.”

Bernhard Langer is a player who could not control the putting yips, which is why he uses the Long Putter. Not sure if Bernhard will retire from golf at the end of this year, when long putters will be banned. On the other side of the coin, Bernhard holds the record for the most birdies made at the treacherous 17th in The Players, some 25 of them in his career. Ironically he also holds the record for the longest putt holed at the 17th, 59 feet 9 inches. Sadly He missed the cut here this year.

The Players

Jerry Kelly / Getty Images

Jerry carded a -7 under par 65 second round, and reported that he lives on adrenaline;

“I enjoy adrenaline, I am 48. I know it almost ravages the body as much as it helps it as you start getting older, but I would like to hang out for another couple of days and have some fun with it.”

“I figured I would have another chance at this golf course, I didn’t think it would be that long, but it’s just strange. This whole career has gone by in the blink of an eye.”

There are four players tied in third place, two shots back at -6 under par for the tournament, Branden Grace, David Hearn, Chris Kirk and the ever-present Rickie Fowler.

Rickie could have had second place on his own, but a loose shot on the par 5 16th found water, leading to a bogey.

Rickie and Ian Poulter were tied in a magazine survey with 24 percent of the vote, for the most overrated player on tour. Rickie was not worried about the comments of his peers;

“If there’s a time where I need something to kind of give me a kick in the butt, then I can think of that and it will put me in the right frame of mind to go out there and take care of business.”

 World number one Rory McIlroy stumbled a bit today, he too could have been better except for a trip to the water. He finished with a -1 under par 71 and a -4 under par total;

“A lot can happen, and I feel like I’m in a decent position.”

Tiger made the cut on the number, but Phil Mickleson, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose, Jason Day, Lee Westwood and Luke Donald all had to go home early.

Phil was left wondering how he ever won here;

“I was thinking to myself as I was walking around, `I can’t believe I’ve actually won here,’ you know?”



Honda Classic. Rory Rolls On.

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Rory McIlroy rolls on at the Honda Classic taking a two shot lead into the final round at PGA National, Palm Beach Gardens, in Florida.

Rory McIlroy will take a two-shot lead into the final round at PGA National. (Smith/Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy / Getty Images

Rory carded a third round -1 under par 69 to keep his nose in front of the chasing pack, posting a total of -12 under par. The 2012 winner at PGA National, is looking to go wire to wire here. Rory spoke about not making mistakes;

” It’s all about not making mistakes, it’s about limiting the damage. You’re going to make a few bogeys out there. If you limit those, hit fairways and greens, that’s what I’m going to try to do tomorrow. There’s still eighteen holes to go, but I’m feeling comfortable with where I am.”

Russell Henley is in second place at -10 under par, his third round -2 under par 68 contained an Eagle 2 at the par four 14th hole. He is trying to ignore what Rory is doing;

” I’m trying not to pay attention to what Rory is doing, obviously, he’s playing great and he’s been in this situation a little bit more than me. But I still have a lot of confidence and I’m just going to try to play my game and not worry about what he’s doing too much.”

Russell Knox carded a third round -2 under par 68, for -9 under par total, and he is the only player among the top eight who has never won on the PGA TOUR.

Tiger Woods put together his best round for a while, a -5 under par 65, that shot him up the leaderboard to T17. He declared he is still in the hunt, even though he is seven shots off the pace of Rory;

“Today was a positive day, hit the ball well and made some putts and got myself back in the hunt.”

Brendon de Jong fell away badly while playing alongside Rory, he collapsed with a third round +6 over par 76, taking him out of contention. He is now T24, a drop of 22 places on the day;

“It was just unfortunately one of those bad days, it’s going to happen if you play this game for long enough. I just hit too many bad shots, I was putting for too many pars on this golf course.”

CME Group Titleholders. Shanshan Feng Wins.

CME Group Titleholders - Naples, FL

Shanshan Feng won the CME Group Titleholders event at Tiburón Golf Club in Naples, Florida.

Shanshan Feng

Shanshan Feng / Getty Images

 Shanshan, from China outplayed a star-studded leaderboard at the season-ending CME Group Titleholders event. She  shot one of the low rounds of the day on Sunday with a bogey-free -6 under par 66 to finish at 15-under par for the tournament.

Shanshan said she was really happy to win her second LPGA title;

“I think it was a magic when I won in China, I had a little luck on the second shot on 18th hole and I made the eagle. I think it started from that win again I got confidence back, and I did really well in Malaysia, too. I was like ‘Oh, no, I only have two more tournaments this season, so I hope I still have 10 more so I can keep up the good game, but I’m still really happy. Even though I didn’t set my goal as winning in the beginning but I started the round really strong, I was four under through six and I knew I was up there and the pressure was starting to get in my mind. As you could see, I didn’t make many putts.  Even though my iron game was really, really accurate, I think that’s why I won.”

Gerina Piller finished in second place at -14 under par, she was playing one group behind Shanshan in the final pairing. Gerina hit a phenomenal second shot on the par-4 18th leaving her with a 10-foot birdie putt to force a playoff, unfortunately for her she missed the putt to force the play-off;

“The second shot, it was kind of on an upslope so I figured if I just get it up in the wind the more it will carry, and the higher I hit it the softer it’s going to land. I had some juices going so I just took a 7 iron and that’s what you practice for.  So I just stood over it and said just trust yourself and I hit it pretty good and it ended up really good. The putt, I thought it was going right, I didn’t know it was going to break that much, and just I was happy with the way I hit the putt, I just didn’t read enough break.”

Gerina said  just being in the lead heading into Sunday’s final round was great experience;

“Absolutely.  I’ve never led an LPGA event and I did, I guess, LPGA Championship for one hole and I didn’t know I was leading so that doesn’t count. So to come out and grind like I did and give myself an opportunity to force a playoff, I’m pretty excited about that.  I’m excited that I’m done for the year.”

Pornanong Phatlum finished third, at -13 under par, while  Lydia Ko was relieved to finally get her first professional event under her belt this week. She was critical of her T21 finish, carding rounds of 71-71-72-70 to finish at -4 under  par;

“I had so many chances to play much better, so I’m a bit disappointed in that. I think my goal was to not make any doubles and I made three, which made that bad, too.  I didn’t have a really good front nine apart from today, so I think that kind of , like that didn’t make a good start to the day.  But I know I finished strong on the back nine score wise.  I’ve learned a lot of things this week, and yeah, I’m pretty happy that my first week is gone.  It’s not a week that comes again, so yeah, I’m glad that it’s over and then I can start a whole new career.”