The Quest for the Green Jacket. Day 4. Wire to Wire Winner Jordan

White Dragon GolfThe MastersGreen Jacket

Jordan Spieth duly became the fifth wire to wire winner of The Masters at Augusta following his record breaking four days of competition.

The Masters

Jordan and Green Jacket / Getty Images 

Jordan carded a final round -2 under par 70 to win his Green Jacket, with a record equaling -18 under par total. He was never really challenged during the day, where he started and finished with a four shot lead. He still said it was a test of nerves;

“It was very nerve-wracking.”

“I thought it might be easier today than yesterday but it wasn’t. I did not sleep well last night. With two major champions right behind me I could not let up.”

“It’s the most incredible week of my life. This is as great as it gets in our sport. It’s a dream come true for me.”

“I did not break 70 last year even having a chance to win so to shoot some low scores and hear those roars is very special.”

“I saw my friends and family behind the green and knew it was a done deal. It did not kick in there and it still has not kicked in. I am still in shock a little bit.”

“It was cool to share that experience with them because they have not been there the couple of times I have won.”

Justin Rose and Phil Mickelson shared second place at -14 under par, Phil had a last round -3 under par 69, which included an Eagle from the bunker at the par five 15th hole, while Justin had -2 under par 70 last round.

Justin reported that he and Jordan got off to a great start, and also remembered his mistakes;

“It was a great start for Jordan and myself with two birdies in the first three holes, but the key moment for me was not getting up and down from right of the eighth and three-putting the ninth.”

Fourth spot went to Rory McIlroy, at -12 under par, recovering somewhat to shoot one of the low rounds of the day -6 under par 66, and stays at number one in the world.

Rory was pleased for Jordan;

“It’s awfully impressive, it’s nice to get your major tally up and running at an early stage in your career.”

“It’s great to see, great for the game, and I’m sure there will be many more.”

“If someone had told me I would finish 12 under at the start of the week I would have taken it and sat back and seen where I finished.”

“Jordan started fantastically well and has kept his foot down and been really impressive.”

 

The Quest for the Green Jacket. Day 3. Jordan Gets the Jitters.

White Dragon GolfThe Masters

In the quest for the Green Jacket, Jordan Spieth got the jitters in the third round of The Masters at Augusta.

The Masters

Jordan Spieth / Getty Images

Jordan got the jitters, shooting a third round -2 under par 70 at The Masters, and he still set a new 54-hole scoring record at -16 under par. To comfort him a little, he still has a formidable four shot lead going into the final on Sunday at Augusta. Jordan thought -2 under today was a good score;

“I thought two under would be a good score today but obviously being four under and closing at two under is disappointing, but it could have been worse and I was very pleased with that up and down on eighteen.”

“It took some guts to hit that flop shot and the par putt was huge, one of the biggest putts I have ever hit.”

“Obviously I would have liked to finish the round a little better, but it could have been worse.”

“I was very frustrated. I didn’t do any scoreboard watching until the 15th and then knew I was six clear and pars were good scores on the last two holes.”

“Driver should never have come out of my bag at that point. I was getting a little erratic with the driver and could have hit three wood, eight iron.”

The chasers made up some ground today, most notably Justin Rose, who was one of those who fired third rounds of -5 under par 67. Justin now stands in second place at -12 under par for the competition, and will probably have to equal, or better that score in the final round if he wants to win the title.

Justin will be with Jordan tomorrow, and said it will be nice to keep watch on him;

“He’s playing incredible golf but it’ll be great to keep an eye on him.”

“You have to put it on the line and you’ve got to make committed, aggressive swings under pressure. That’s what I’m going to do tomorrow.”

Another -5 under par 67 came from Phil Mickelson, giving him third place on his own at -11 under par. Charley Hoffman slipped back today, a -1 under par 71 leaving him with -10 under for the competition, which is still four shots clear of the main bunch.

The chasing posse are all at -6 under par, ten shots off the pace, Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, Kevin Na, Kevin Streelman and Dustin Johnson.

Rory and Tiger both had rounds of -4 under par 67, and still have a long way to go to even challenge for second place. Which probably is why Tiger dropped the F-word rant on live TV, “Oh my F-ing God,” for which the TV presenters had to quickly apologize. Not so easy to apologize to God.

Forgetting his low point verbal rant on the course today Tiger said his round should have been lower;

“It could have been something seriously low today, I had it really going.”

“All in all, if you probably look at it, it should have been about two shots better.”

“It’s in Jordan’s hands right now, I’m going to have to put together a really special round of golf tomorrow. And you just never know.”

“To come back here and play a major championship and to be in the mix, granted I’ve got to shoot a low one tomorrow, but at least I’ve given myself a chance.”

Rory knows it would take something extraordinary for him to win;

“I’ll try and get off to a good start like I did today.”

“If I do that it really depends, if I was to go out and shoot 30, I’m going to need something around 61 or 62 to have a chance. Not sure that’s going to happen.”

Farmers Open. Harris English Leads.

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Harris English leads the Farmers Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego at the mid-way point.

Farmers Open

Harris English / Getty Images

Harris shot a second round -6 under par 66 on the easier North Course to lead the Farmers Open by two shots with his -10 under par total. He admitted to reporters that it is easy to find what is not right with your game, when it is not going well;

“When you start struggling, it’s easy to try to find stuff that’s wrong with your game, wrong with your swing.”

“I definitely was more swing-oriented than playing golf. That’s not me. That’s not how I grew up playing the game.”

“You’re standing over shots thinking about swing positions instead of trying to see your ball flight and trying to play golf. That’s what I was doing the latter half of the year, it was really frustrating.”

“I’ve been having a lot more fun since I know where the ball’s been going these past couple months and I’m looking forward to the next couple years with working with Scott and to see what we can accomplish.”

Tied in third place are three players, all on -8 under par for the competition, Nick Watney, Jhonattan Vegas and Martin Laird.

Nick had a superb second round of -7  under par 65 on the North Course to haul himself up into contention at the week-end. Jhonattan had a steady -3 under par second round and Martin -4 under par, all three on the North Course.

On his own in fifth place is Nick Thompson who struggled round the South Course today carding +1 over par 73 and losing touch with the leaders, he is now at -7 under par overall.

There are some BIG names not making cut, apart from the withdrawn Tiger Woods.

Phil Mickelson continues to struggle, and described his putting performance as pathetic;

“It’s very frustrating for me right now, I felt really ready to start the year and these first few weeks have been very poor.”

“I feel like I’m hitting the ball tee to green quite well, really well, but my putting is beyond pathetic and if I can’t get back to the levels of 2013, I’m not sure what I’m going to do, because this is very frustrating.”   

”It was one of the worst putting performances, and the first few weeks really have been the same way, and you simply can’t compete at this level putting like that.”

Justin Rose, Luke Donald, Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth all joined the queue to go home early.

Dustin, playing for the first time since a six-month break to get professional help for “personal challenges,” should have used the time to sharpen up his game;

“The last two days, I think normally I probably would be at least five or six under right now instead of even par, but I’m happy with where it’s at. Just a little rusty, that’s all.”

DP World Tour Championship. Henrik Successfully Defends Title.

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Henrik Stenson successfully defended his DP World Tour Championship title on the Earth Course in Dubai.

DP World Championship

Henrik Stenson and Trophy / Getty Images

Henrik won the DP World Championship, and defending his title for the first time in his career. A final round -2 under par 70 gave him the winning total of -16 under par, and a two shot victory.

He said how good it felt to get his first win of the year, the win also took him to number 2 in the World, but he would have liked to have been number 1;

“It feels great.”

“I’m exhausted to say the least. It was hot out there and tricky on the back nine. I did not play my best and had a shocking hole on eleven.”

“I walked up to the tee with too much club in my hand and instead of changing I tried to cut a two-iron but hit a push, slice, shank straight into the buildings.”

“That knocked me back but I did not give up. I just had to dig in there and wait for something to happen. I had a couple of close calls this year to get my win and it was not to be. It’s been close but eventually you get something if you stick around and I surely did that.”

“It would be nice to have been ranked the world’s best at some point, but if I had the choice I would go for a Major Championship so I am going to try and be in good shape for them next year.”

World Number One Rory McIlroy, with Ryder Cup team-mates Justin Rose and Victor Dubuisson tied in second place at -14 under par. Rory made a challenge in the final round, shooting -4 under par 68, but it was not enough to upset Henrik. But he was very happy to have won the Race to Dubai;

The Race to Dubai

Race to Dubai winner Rory McIlroy

“It’s a great feeling to know that I’ve played the best golf throughout the season of any of the guys for the second time in three years, it’s really nice.”

“I never expected 14 under to have a remote chance of winning this golf tournament.”

“It just seemed like no one really took the tournament by the scruff of the neck and went with it. The two guys, Rafa and Henrik, were on 16 for quite a while, and sort of stayed there.”

“I saw Rafa went back to 15 under as I birdied 15 to get to 14 under and I thought if I could post 16, I might have a chance. 16 would have been good enough for a play-off in the end.”

“I just didn’t play well enough to win this week, and if I had of won by playing like that, it would have been a bit of a surprise.”

“A lot of positives heading into 2015 and something I’m really pleased about this year is that consistency that I’ve shown in my golf. I haven’t finished outside the top 25. My last few results have been very consistent, very good, and a lot of good stuff going into next year.”

“I feel like, as you said, this year has been full of up-and-downs, mainly ups, which is a great thing.I learned a lot from it and I feel like I came through this year stronger and wiser, and I can go into 2015 in a much better place.” 

“I’m happy with the success that I’ve had, and I feel like there’s been a lot that I’ve learned this year, as well, and that’s a great thing going into the future.”

 

 

DP World Tour Championship. Henrik & Rafa Pull Clear.

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Henrik Stenson and Rafa Cabrera- Bello pull clear of the field in the DP World Tour Championship on the Earth Course in Dubai.

DP World Tour Championship

Rafa Cabrera-Bello / Getty Images

Rafa shot a great third round -7 under par 65, to share the DP World Tour Championship lead with Henrik at -14 under par, the pair of them now have a three shot advantage going into the final round tomorrow.

Rafa said it had been a very special day for him;

“Obviously it’s been a very special round for me today,” he said. “I’m really, really pleased with the score, and obviously with the good finish.”

“The short game and putting has been unbelievable, probably the best day of my life for short game.”

“I think that that’s what helped me hang in there on the front nine and I did play better on the back nine. I was playing more aggressive going for it, hitting good shots, and giving myself a lot of chances and I did make some of them.”

Henrik did nothing wrong today, a bogey free -4 under par 68, and reported he had recovered from hitting the wall yesterday, he put it down to old age. He has never successfully defended a title, and wants to win here;

“I felt a little stronger today but I wasn’t exactly jumping out of bed this morning, but what do you expect at 38 years old? I’m a little low on energy but when the mind wants something you can pull through.”

“It would be great to win. It’s a great championship and it would mean a lot to defend a title and get the win. It’s been a good year but when you assess it you always look at the trophies and there hasn’t been one yet.”

“All in all it was a good day and we’re still at the races so I am pretty pleased.”

Justin Rose scored a -4 under par 68 today to move himself into third place alone, at -11 under par. He played alongside Rafa and could only admire what he saw;

“I watched an incredible round of golf today, Rafa was unbelievable. He really struggled with his game the first few holes, up-and-down, up-and-down, up-and-down, and then got some flow going.”

“He had 15 one-putts today. His short game was Seve-like. It was awesome.”

“He was chipping it to a foot and it was awesome. Chipping around this golf course is difficult, very grainy, very tough, very sandy underneath the ball. It was a masterclass.”

Tied in fourth place at -10 under par are; Rory McIlroyVictor Dubuisson, Tyrrell Hatton and Thorbjørn Olesen.

Rory had another off day, -2 under par 70,with a couple of double bogey’s thrown in, and is now four shots off the lead;

“It makes life a little more difficult for me tomorrow. I need to be aggressive, I need to go at pins, hit it close and make some putts.”

“I felt a little better out there today than yesterday so knew if I stayed patient the birdies would come. I got on a nice run with three birdies in a row from the fifth and another one at ten, but unfortunately the back nine was not quite as good as the front.”

“It was annoying to follow one double bogey with another. I was a little frustrated but it was nice to get a couple back and at least keep myself in touch.”

DP World Tour Championship. Henrik Has Half-Way Lead.

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Henrik Stenson has the half-way lead in the DP World Tour Championship on the Earth Course in Dubai.

 DP World Tour Championship

Henrik Stenson / Getty Images

Henrik posted a second round -6 under par 66 to lead the DP World Tour Championship at the half-way point by two shots on -10 under par.

He reported that he felt like he was running on empty, after a long season;

“Around the 12th hole I felt like I was running out of steam. It was difficult mentally from there on. I had to really focus hard and drag myself over the finish line.”

“It’s hot and sticky and even though I’m drinking well and getting plenty of energy, I just felt like I hit the wall on 12.”

“If it’s one or two holes left, you normally feel like, ‘okay, I can hang on’. But it was a bit of an uphill struggle from there. I managed to finish in good style anyway so I’m pleased with that.”

“There’s still a lot of golf to play and I’m really happy with how I closed this round.”

Rory McIlroy is just two shots behind at -8 under par, sharing second place with Richie Ramsay and Danny Willett.

Rory said he will try to close the gap on the leader tomorrow;

“I’m in a good position and there is a lot of golf left, I’ve definitely been in worse positions after two rounds and still won.”

“It could have been worse but it probably could have been a little better. I definitely didn’t have it like I did yesterday. I had to dig in a little bit so hopefully that’s the bad one out of the way and I have 36 holes now to make some ground up on Henrik.”

“Henrik’s very comfortable on this golf course obviously. I can’t let him get too far ahead tomorrow. I have to get off to a fast start and try and put a bit of pressure on him. Hopefully I can do that.”

Shane Lowry, aided by a hole-in-one on the 13th, and former US Open Champion Justin Rose are among the five-strong group of players another stroke back at -7 under par.

Shane spoke about his first ever Ace in tournament play, on the 204 yard par three 13th, and how good it felt;

“It was a beautiful shot, a perfect number for my six iron.”

“It’s my first in tournament play and only my second ever so it was pretty exciting. It was hard to go on and play the next hole after that.”

“I am still in the tournament and I suppose if you had given me that on Thursday I would have taken it.”

OHL Classic at Mayakoba. Jason jumps Ahead in the Rain.

White Dragon GolfOHL Classic at Mayakoba

Jason Bohn jumps ahead in the rain at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in Mexico.

Jason Bohn / Getty Images

Jason Bohn / Getty Images

Jason shot a third round -4 under par 67, and a tournament total of -15 under par, to take the lead by one stroke at the rain-soaked OHL Classic at Mayakoba. He said that he had played well in the terrible conditions;

“It was a very difficult day to play golf with the rain coming in and coming out and the wind picking up and dying down, but I played well.”

“I relied a lot on my short game today and kept the ball in front of me. It was a little sour to finish with a bogey, but that’s the way it works.”

Shawn Stefani is in second place, a 20 foot birdie putt on the last hole gave him a -3 under par third round and -14 under par total.

Shawn is looking his first PGA TOUR win, he lost to Justin Rose in a play-off at Congressional in July. He spoke about the tough finish today, the bogeys on 16 and 17, and a birdie on 18;

“I walked off the green on 17 and said, `Just try to hit one in the fairway.’ Hit a good shot in there and just tried to make birdie to end on a positive note.”

 “Sixteen and seventeen were just kind of mental errors, getting tired late in the day. You can’t do that. It happened. But I stayed positive walking onto 18 tee box, and hit a couple good shots and knocked her in there.”

Charlie Hoffman and Alex Chejka are tied in third position, both at -12 under par for the competition. Charlie with a -4 under par third round and Alex -3 under par.

Ken Duke, T 5 at -11 under par also mention the wind and the rain;

“The first few holes we had some wind and, obviously, we could see that weather coming in with the wind.”

“It’s a golf course you have to be patient on, it’s tough out there in the rain, you’re just soaked out there.”

The 36 hole leader Michael Putnam crashed out of contention, recording +6 over par 77, reducing his total to -6 under par and T 26.

There are seven players, who sit within four shots of the lead, it should make interesting golf on Sunday with so many players in with a chance.