Kia Classic. Mirim Lee Leads.

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Mirim Lee leads the Kia Classic at Aviara Golf Club in California.

Kia Classic

Mirim and Caddy / Getty Images

Mirim shot a bogey free first round -7 under par 65, to lead the Kia Classic in California. She said practice was the key, and a new grip, good putting also helped;

“I practiced a lot this week, I changed the grip.”

” Today was putting.”

Yani Tseng is in second place at -6 under par while World number one Lydia Ko is in close contention at -5 under par in third position, tied there with Karrie Webb, Cristie Kerr and Xiyu Lin.

Yani had an Eagle at the par-5 10th;

“I never thought it was going to be that close.”

“I was a little like unbalanced, so I kind of tied my shoes a little bit. Actually, there was one second in my mind I was like, ‘How about if I hit it in the water.’ I was like, ‘Oh, if I hit it in the water, I just go drop another ball.”

“I got like a few birdies in my pocket and should be OK.’ So I was like, ‘If I make bogey, it’s no big deal.'”

Lydia is full of confidence in her golf game;

“I’m coming in with a lot of confidence and know that my game is there.”

“It’s always good to know that you can be aggressive and just to trust myself.”

“I’ve been playing pretty solid the last couple of weeks. It’s a pretty cool streak.”

“It’s not easy, I’m trying to take one round at a time, one shot at a time, and that kind of breaks it up a little bit.”

“It’s tough. Playing weeks back to back and all courses just being different, I think that’s the hard thing, but I’m just trying to keep focused.”

“I know that I’ve played well the last couple of events. It’s always good to know that you’re playing well. You can be confident.”

In the group at -4 under par is Stacy Lewis, Inbee Park and Lexi Thompson.

Lexi holed out from 98 yards for Eagle on the par-4 seventh;

“Downhill, a little downwind, and I landed my 55 degree about 95, it one-bounced, past, went back and actually stayed on the lip for a little bit and then fell. So, pretty awesome.”

The US Open champion Michelle Wie got her game together and carded five birdies on her front nine to challenge the leaders, but sadly ended the opening round -3 under par 69 after posting her third bogey of the day at the 18th.

 

Valero Texas Open. Charlie Calms the Texas Wind-Tunnel

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Charlie Hoffman calmed the Texas wind-tunnel at the Texas Valero Open, taking him all the way to the summit of the leaderboard.

Texas Valero Open

Charley Hoffman / Getty Images

Charley shot a bogey free wind-swept Valero Texas Open first round -5 under par 67, to sit on top of the leaderboard.

The  early morning starters faced wind gusts around 40 mph, while Charlie contended with a steady 15 mph wind in the afternoon at TPC San Antonio.

 

When almost 22 percent of the field (31 of 141) shoots 80 or higher, you know it is a bad day. So bad that Martin Kaymer carded +10 over par 82, and he was not the worst, the worst professional score today was +16 over par.

Aaron Baddeley is in second place at -4 under par.  On the driveable par-4 17th hole he decided to hit a cut driver, instead of going all out with a fairway wood and then watched in horror as the ball disappeared into the woods. He took three off the tee and holed out for an unlikely birdie;

“I was thinking of gripping a 3-wood or hit a cut driver, and I don’t know, I went with the cut driver and hit a pulled draw in the middle of the trees.”

“I just thought I’d just hit it straight and so I hit it and started walking and then heard the crowd going nuts, I was like, wait, I just made birdie.”

“I played really nice for the majority of the day. I just said to myself it was the wrong shot. Hit a straight one. It was straight downwind, get it going straight, it will go straight.”

“So I hit the second one and said, man, why didn’t I do that the first time? And it rolls up and goes in.”

“I knew it was going to be blowing, I saw the forecast, it was going to die down just a little bit.”

“So even going to bed last night I already had the mindset. I just had to be patient, whether you got off to a good start or a bad start. So I think days like today the mindset is the most important.”

Max Homa is in third place at -3 under par for the tournament, one ahead of Ryan Palmer and Phil Mickelson.

In a very strange occurrence, while hitting a shot from the fairway bunker, the head on Phil’s Callaway X-Forged ’13 8-iron flew off, leaving him with just the shaft in his hands;

“Yeah, it was weird, the shaft broke just above the hosel, it was just a weird thing. It happens. It’s part of the game, I guess. You hit enough shots it’s going to work out.”

“I’m just curious at what point on the downswing it came off, if it was right before impact or right at impact, because the shot didn’t come off very well.”

“I would have used it the next three holes, I had to feather a 7-iron all three times.”

Valero Texas Open

Phil and broken club / Getty Images

Valero Texas Open

Trophee Hassan II. Adrian Saddier Shines.

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Adrian Saddier leads the first round of the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco on the Golf du Palais Royal course.

Trophee Hassan 11

Adrian Saddier / Getty Images

Adrian had a bogey free first round -7 under par 65, to lead the Trophee Hasan 11. The day started with an Eagle on the 1st hole, a 530 yard par five, chipping in.

Adrian unfortunately lost his card last year, and naturally was very happy to be here;

“I’m very happy, I was very grateful to get an invite to play here.”

“This place is just unbelievable. I played very solid today. I had a chip in for eagle on the first then another chip in on six, so it was a great start and I kept it going.”

“I just have a little category on The European Tour so I will be focused on The Challenge Tour this year.” 

“I played last week in Madeira and although the tournament was cancelled I was playing well in the strong wind so I’m in good shape for this week.”

“It’s almost my best round; I shot 64 in Qatar last year, which was eight under, so this is one of my best rounds.” 

“If I could get a win it would change my schedule as at the moment I’m playing on the Challenge Tour. I just need to focus on each shot now and see what happens.”

Daniel Gaunt is in second place, just one shot back at  -6 under par 66 for his opening round.

George Coetzee, David Drysdale and Chris Wood all share third place at -5 under par, after their first rounds of  67.

Marcel Siem is desperate to get into The Masters field, after missing out by just 0.03 points last year. he currently sits with a large group at -4 under par;

“It’s a big week for me and four under is a good start.”

“I’m really excited about playing the Masters, I’ve never played it. I finished it off two years ago and still did not get in. It was a little horrible.”

“I’m going to keep doing what I did today, try hard not to make any stupid mistakes. I have got the experience and I know the golf course.”

“I will make enough birdies I reckon, just need to avoid the mistakes.”

 

Lalla Meryem Cup. Tonje and Ursula Lead.

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Rookie Tonje Daffinrud, from Norway and Ursula Wikstrom from Finland, lead the Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco.

Lalla Meryem Cup

Tonje Daffinrud / Getty Images

Rookie Tonje Daffinrud and Ursula Wikstrom both shot first rounds of -4 under par 67, to lead the Lalla Meryem Cup at Golf De L’Ocean in Morocco.

Tonje, playing in only her third Ladies European Tour event was really happy with her round. She played in eight events on the LET Access Series last year, and had one win, at the Azores Open, and said that experience was good for her.;

 “It was a pretty good start to the week. I felt really good so I was able to attack some pins and I’m happy.”

“It helped me a lot. I came straight from college so I didn’t know what professional life would be like so for me that was the only way to get into it. I learned a lot from it. Just the routine of travelling every week and you become friends with all the players.”

“It’s early. I’m not going to put too much into it. I feel great today and I’ll go out and do the same tomorrow. I had a good start to the season and this is where I want to be. I’m here to win.”

Ursula seen in the picture with her caddy husband , said it had been an easy round, with only one bogey;

Lalla Meryem Cup

Ursula Wikstrom / Getty Images

“It was an easy day and I sneaked in the score. I didn’t feel I was playing that well, but only five birdies, one bogey and not too many mistakes.  I used all the chances that I had.”

“I made one bogey on number one, my 10th, where I hit it on the left and had to take a drop.”

 “After yesterday it was pretty easy, because there was not that much wind but the greens are much faster than at the beginning of the week and also the fairways, so you get more run on the ball, but we’ve played here so many years that I know the course quite well.”

On a tightly compacted leaderboard the leading two ladies have a one stroke lead over 10 other players, all on -3 under par; Gwladys Nocera, Jade Schaeffer, Anne-Lise CaudalTrish Johnson, Ellie Givens, Felicity Johnson, Florentyna Parker, Nicole Broch Larsen and 16-year-old amateur Matthilda Cappeliez.

Matthilda talked about last years tournament, and also mentioned today’s problems with a tree;

“I remember last year. It was good and bad memories, but it was an experience, so just keep going and forget the bad ones.”

 “I made a few birdies on the front and on the back also, so it was nice. Unfortunately I was unlucky on the eighth and I put my drive into a tree.”

 

 

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.

JTBC Founders Cup. Hyo Joo Kim Wins.

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Hyo Joo Kim, a 19 year-old rookie, wins the JTBC Founders Cup at Wildfire Golf Club in Arizona.

JTBC Founders Cup

Hyo Joo KIm / Getty Images

Hyo shot a final round -5 under par 67 to win the JTBC Founders Cup with a -21 under par tournament total.

She had this to say afterwards, through an interpreter;

“It’s impossible not to feel a little pressure or nervous, especially when your playing partner is playing so well.”

“If anything, I think the situation on hole 10 helped because after I went through there and I got a bogey, I just realized there’s no time to feel pressure or feel afraid.  I’ve just got to go out there and play.”

She also mentioned the rivalry between the South Korean rookies;

“I’m a rookie, too, so I don’t have time to think too much about it.”

“But I have known these players from since we used to play on the Korean ladies tour, and I know how good they can be.”

” In fact, everyone on the LPGA Tour is really good, otherwise they wouldn’t be here.  So I’m just trying to find my place.”

Stacy Lewis finished in second place at -18 under par, her lat round of -4 under par  68 not enough to put too much pressure on the leader and her playing partner;

“She’s just really solid, kind of had to battle back from some adversity there on ten, but just really solid.”

“On the front, I didn’t put much pressure on her but even when I did make some putts, she made the putts to follow and she put a lot of pressure on and was just really solid all day.”

Third position was shared between Ilhee Lee, she had a last round of -6 under par 66, which elevated her up the leaderboard, with a final total of -18 under par. Pornanong Phatlum and Mi Hyang Lee, joined her on that same score.

Ilhee was impressed with her finish today;

“Well today on the front nine, I thought this weekend is not my weekend, every putt goes so close but didn’t go in.”

 But my caddie, he told me, be patient because it’s going to go in.”

” Then I had seven holes left, and made birdie, five feet from the par 3, and made it, and then I start to feel like I can make more.”

“But then I made eagle putt, that was like 20 feet away.  And like this far, birdie, right next hole.  I mean, finished strong.  I’m happy.  I’m happy for I finished strong. “

Lydia Ko finished in a group of players on -15 under par, her last round -3 under par 69 not good enough to mount a serious challenge.

 

 

Arnold Palmer Invitational. Matt Makes It Again.

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Defending Champion Matt Every makes it again at the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill.

Matt Every and Arnold / Getty Images

Matt Every and Arnold / Getty Images

Matt joined Tiger Woods and Loren Roberts as the only players to repeat at Bay Hill, shooting a final round -6 under par 66, and an Arnold Palmer Invitational total of -19 under par, a one shot victory;

“It’s easy to get down on yourself out here, it’s the biggest waste of time because nobody really cares.”

“The last three feet I was begging for it to hang, and I was like, ‘Gosh, these are the ones that always lip out. Be so cool to see this one dive in,’ and it did. Cool moment.”

“I was playing so good, yesterday when I got done, that was the best I hit it in a long time.”

“I told Tiger I’d hold it down for him until he gets back.”

“I’m like, you’re already in the Masters.”

“After Augusta last year, I was really bummed out, I felt really good about my game and then I got there and got my butt kicked. “

“I’ve got to get better because I don’t want to be a guy who can’t compete there.”

“I do want to win more tournaments, though, scratch that I said that, but it’s neat to get them both here.”

Henrik, who finished second at -18 under par, was annoyed at being put on the clock by the officials, on the 15th hole, when he was leading the tournament, and I am inclined to agree with him, what a stupid decision;

“I’m a little bit disappointed with the outcome, but I’m as much disappointed with the PGA Tour officials for putting us on the clock on 15, starting to chase us down the stretch, and that’s not really the way to close out a golf tournament.”

“It’s hard enough to finish out a golf tournament and play those finishing holes without being on the clock.”

“I didn’t see the reason for that really. I didn’t even read my putt more than just one quick look on 15. Three-putted that one from long range. Morgan got a bad time on 16 on the second shot. I kind of rushed my putt from the back fringe.”

“It’s just hard when you don’t feel like you can take the time that you want to take. That surely didn’t help the cause.”

Ozzie Matt Jones finished in third place at -17 under par, with -4 under par 67 final round.

Rory, T11 at -11 under, spoke about the odds of him winning The Masters;

“I guess if you go on form, then probably no. But it depends how far you take that form back and you’ve got to look at previous results there and all sorts of stuff. I’m not a bookie.”

“The main goal was to come here and try to win, couldn’t do that. At least I got a couple of things out of this week, which is good.”