Memorial Tournament. David Lingmerth Wins in Play-Off

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David Lingmerth wins the Memorial Tournament in play-off against Justin Rose at Muirfield Village Golf Club.

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Jack and David / Getty Images

David shot a last round – 3 under par 69 to equal the Memorial Tournament total of Justin Rose at -15 under par, setting up a play-off for the title.

Memorial Tournament

David and Justin / Getty Images

The three-hole playoff was the longest in Memorial Tournament history and with David having lost his previous two play-offs. Sweden has won on the European Tour and PGA this week a first time event I think. David gave credit to his Uncle for getting him to play golf in the first place. He spoke about the 20ft putt that Justin dropped in at the first play-off hole, thinking before that he could win the tournament right there, and then he had to sink his 10 footer just to stay in it;

“It’s an honor being here, and winning is surreal.”

“If I didn’t have him, I might not even have played golf, he’s pushed me and tried to get me to the mindset that I can do whatever I set my mind to.”

“Playoffs are exciting and my heart was beating, but I think I handled it pretty well.”

”I was thinking to myself that I’d probably have a putt to win the tournament right there,’ and then he drops it in, and this big, huge roar.”

“Crazy feeling. So I took a few moments just to let the crowd and myself calm down because I knew how big that next putt was going to be.”

“I’ve been in a few playoffs. You win some, you lose some. But I didn’t feel that it was my turn to lose this time. I was telling myself that I was going to make that putt.”

Justin lost a three shot lead at the start of play, he talked about David making that putt and the poor drive on the 3rd play-off hole that lead to defeat;

”He needs to look back at that putt that kept it going on the first extra hole, he did everything he needed to.”

“I hit pretty much as good a shot as I could hit from the lie, I just tried to dig out a 3-wood.”

“I was trying to get it in the left bunker, and I couldn’t quite get enough cut on it to get it to the left bunker. But I was pretty much aiming 80 yards left of the green.”

”When I made that putt on the first extra hole, I thought, wow, I’m going to steal this one, but it wasn’t to be.”

 Jordan Spieth tied in third place , he closed with a -7 under par 65 and finished up only two shots behind the leaders in a tie with Francesco Molinari  at -13 under par.

Jordan said the Golfing Gods were not with him today;

“The golf gods were not on my side today.” 

“They were certainly a little nicer today than they have been. But I would call it kind of evening out over the day.”

“On a course like this, you’re going to get some unlucky breaks more than you will catch good ones just given how tough it is.”

Best not to ask about Tiger Woods who obviously finished in last place, by a long shot.

 

Memorial Tournament. Justin Rose Has the Advantage.

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Ex Champion Justin Rose has the advantage at the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club, and will take a three shot lead into the final round.

Memorial Tournament

Justin Rose / Getty Images

Justin separated himself from the field, shooting a third round -6 under par 66 to post a Memorial Tournament total of -15 under par.

Justin’s caddie, Mark Fulcher told him he liked their position going into this round;

“It kind of made me feel that there’s no panic, there’s no rush, you don’t have to force anything, just let it come to me.”

“And that’s the kind of round I played today. I didn’t force any hole. I didn’t force any shot.  But I hit the right shot at the right time which helped me build the score.”

“I was definitely feeling the pressure for a number of years to notch my first PGA TOUR victory, and it had become pretty elusive.”

” As time ticks on, it becomes harder and harder, so to finally do it and do it at a place like this and a tournament of this stature was fantastic.”  

“It definitely began to set me in a very good course, this tournament five years ago.”

“I felt excited about the Memorial and the U.S. Open, I felt excited about these weeks.”

“Now I’m in a situation where I want to win every year.”

“I’ve got that nice run going six years in a row with victories. Now there’s pressure to win every year, so you certainly don’t get complacent.”

In an International top three, Francesco Molinari and David Lingmerth share second place at -12 under par.

David kind of cooled off, carding an even par 72 third round, while Francesco kept up the pressure with -3 under par 69, in his first ever appearance here at Muirfield Village.

David said he lost concentration for a little while;

“I started missing a couple of shots and just kind of lost focus.”

“I got down on myself a little bit and I got a little frustrated.”

“Fortunately, though, I was able to turn it around here a little bit in the end.”

Jim Furyk is the highest placed American, alone in fourth place at -11 under par, a -2 under round keeping him in touch with the leaders. He hopes to pick the right places to be and play well tomorrow;

“There’s places to attack on this golf course and there’s places to play conservative, and I’m going to try to pick and choose those places tomorrow and hopefully do well.”

Tiger Woods totally imploded with his worst ever professional round, +13 over par 85 and  declined to speak to the media after his round.

Memorial Tournament

Tiger saying nothing/Getty Images

Phil Mickelson also stumbled along today, +6 over par 78, leaving him at +2 over par for the tournament.

It was not too long ago, when Tiger was number one, and every one assumed that when he slipped down Phil would naturally just step up take on the mantle of being the worlds best golfer. For one reason or another it just did not happen.

 

Memorial Tournament. Lingmerth Leads.

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David Lingmerth, from Sweden, leads the Memorial Tournament at the half-way stage at Muirfield Village Golf Club, in Ohio.

Memorial Tournament

David Lingmerth / Getty Images

David had a second round -7 under par 65 to lead the Memorial Tournament after 36 holes with a -12 under par total.

David, who usually makes slow starts to rounds, yesterday he was  +2 over par after four holes, but has made 14 birdies and no bogeys since;

“All of a sudden I just started playing the way I know I can, and it was pretty stress-free after those four holes yesterday.”

David got his first set of clubs, and some coaching from his uncle Goran, who played in the NFL, with the Cleveland Browns;

“I got my first set of clubs from him when I was 12. If I didn’t have him, I might not even have played golf.”

“He’s pushed me and tried to get me to the mindset that I can do whatever I set my mind to.”

“So he’s been a good inspiration in so many ways. When I moved over here for college, he was like my second dad.”

Jason Dufner is in second place at -11 under par, carding a second round -5 under par 67, and in the first two days has scored four eagles,  a hole-in-one with a six iron at the 201-yard, par-3 16th hole. Jason is only the third player, since 1983, to card an ace and three other eagles in his first 36 holes of a PGA TOUR stroke-play event.

Jason actually spoke to the media today, about the hole in one;

Memorial Tournament

Hole in One / Getty Images

“It looked pretty good from my vantage point.”

“I’m hitting it really good, I’m having enough good holes, good shots, to offset some of the mistakes I’ve had.”

“Probably the best I’ve ever done.” 

Tied in third place are Ryan Moore and Andy Sullivan, at -10 under par. Andy shot the low round of the day, -8 under par 64, while Ryan carded a second round -5 under par 67.

 Andy has won twice on the European Tour in 2015, but is making his first stroke-play start in the United States. His only other start in the U.S. came at this year’s World Golf Championships-Cadillac Match Play;

“I’m just grateful for Mr. Nicklaus and Don Sullivan to give me the invite to come out and have the opportunity to play. So I’ll try and take full advantage of it.”

The defending champion Hideki Matsuyama is in a group of six players all at -9 under par.

Memorial Tournament

Hideki Matsuyama / Getty Images

Hideki did not play as well today as the first round;

“Today was back to the same old grind. So it’s right to the practice range right now and see if I can get it figured out. I’ll be there a while.”

Joining Hideki on -9 under are, Justin Rose, Jim Furyk, Francesco Molinari, Brendon Todd and Patrick Rodgers.

Tiger Woods made the cut on the number, -1 under par, but insists he is making progress;

 “That’s the whole idea of going forward. You have to be able to do it on the golf course, even if it’s bad.”

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Tiger Woods / Getty Images

 

 

 

Memorial Tournament. Bubba Blasts His Way to the Top.

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Bubba Watson blasts his way to the top of the Memorial Tournament leaderboard. Bubba pulls ahead by 1

Bubba Watson / Getty Images

Bubba fired a -3 under par 69 to blast his way to the top of the Memorial Tournament leaderboard at -12 under par. He reported that he wants to shoot the same score tomorrow;

“ I have a shot, I would like the same score tomorrow and let the boys beat me if they can. The more rest I have, the more I can get to a tournament and be excited about it. I’m full of energy and ready to go.  My emotions aren’t as up and down as much as when I play a long stretch.”

Scott Langley holds second place, just one shot behind at -11 under par following his marvelous third round of -5 under par 67. It will be a lefty / lefty pairing for the last round, a very rare feat indeed. Scott has so far been having a tough time on Tour;

“I would say last year was tougher than this year for me. I rode the ups and downs a little bit more last year than I guess I have this year. I just tried to approach the game and my career with a little more even‑keel attitude.” “Any time you shoot in the 60s here, pretty happy about it, tough place.”

Third place belongs to Hideki Matsuyama, he carded a third round -3 under par to accumulate his -10 under par tournament total.

These guys can not be too comfortable, with World number one Adam Scott sitting in fourth spot at -9 under par. Adam scored a -4 under par 68 third round, and is looking to consolidate his position as the worlds number one.

Adam says he is confident;

“I’m playing with a lot of confidence, it’s funny how quickly it can build because I went to the Crowne Plaza having not swung the club very well and not 100 percent sure and then it really falls into place on Sunday.” ‘It’s going to be tough, he’s playing great this year, and I just have to post a number. I’m in a good position where I can possibly post a number, and that makes life a little harder for the leader.”

I have been wondering and writing about the poor form of Phil Mickelson of late. The reason for his distraction has become apparent as FBI agents are investigating him for insider trading. Phil made a jovial reference to the investigation in a conversation with fellow golfer, Robert Garrigus.

Phil Mickleson / Getty Images

Phil at Memorial“It’s been an interesting evening, I don’t have much to say about it. It’s not going to change the way I carry myself. Honestly, I’ve done nothing wrong. I’m not going to walk around any other way.”

Glad to hear that Phil, now get back to playing good golf.

Memorial Tournament. Rory Roars Ahead.

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 Rory McIlroy roars ahead in the first round of the Memorial Tournament, topping the leaderboard by three shots.

McIlroy magical at Muirfield

Magical Rory McIlroy / Getty Images

Rampant Rory carded a first round -9 under par 63 at Muirfield Village, taking a  three shot lead into the second round of the Jack Nicklaus hosted event. That score included a double bogey as well, which denied Rory a chance of setting a new course record. The flight over from England, fresh from his win at Wentworth, did not bother him one little bit. Even a tweak in his left knee on the 7th hole did not deter him either;

“Monday seemed like a long day and it just sort of felt like when I got here it was just a different tour. You’re getting ready for the U.S. Open. It’s a big tournament, the Memorial in itself.

“And I prepared well. I came here early Tuesday morning, practiced, did a good session on the range yesterday after the pro-am in the afternoon, so I’ve been putting a lot of work in, and it seems to be paying off.”

“I wear spikes, so sometimes your foot can get stuck in the ground and you can torque your knee a little too much. I think that’s what I did, I tweaked it. The inside of it is sore, it’s a little swollen. Go see the physio and get some treatment and get ice on it, and hopefully it will be OK for tomorrow.”

Rory needed only 22 putts during this first round and said that this sort of form had been in the pipeline for sometime;

“This has been coming, it’s been coming. My performances have been really good, been shooting really good scores.  There’s just been runs of holes in tournaments where I haven’t played so well and I’ve shot it 4 or 5 over in the space of nine holes, and that’s really just derailed my tournament.”

“Last week I just didn’t do that. And that’s down to nothing more than hitting good golf shots and hitting good putts and limiting my mistakes whenever I get in trouble on the golf course.”

There are three players tied in second place at -6 under par after completing their first rounds of 66, which is a good score around this course. Paul Casey, Chris Kirk and Bubba Watson are the guys trying to chase down Rory.

Phil Mickelson was putting together a decent first round until the last three holes, dropping from -5 under par to even, in the blink of an eye. He does not like the 16th since Jack redesigned it in 2010, he made bogey there and then recorded double bogey from the middle of the fairway at the 17th. Another mess at the 18th hole where he three-putted for another double bogey. Phil spoke about that 16th hole;

“It’s a feast or famine hole for me, it doesn’t set up well for a left-handed shot dispersion. It has to be a perfectly struck shot. And I just go in the water there most of the time, because I don’t want to pull it way to the right. I was playing well, but the last three holes just threw away a good round.”

 

The Memorial Tournament. Its Kooch by Two

Matt Kuchar, Kooch to his friends and fans leads the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Course, in Ohio.

Deja vu

Happy Matt Kuchar / Getty

Matt managed to survive a  nasty combination of swirling wind and fast greens at Muirfield Village for a -2 under par 70, giving him a two-shot lead at -8 under par for the tournament over Kevin Chappell and Kyle Stanley, heading into the final round on Sunday.

Matt admitted it was like a survival course;

“It was a bit of survival, I was fortunate to make a handful of birdies. I think anytime you make a birdie in these conditions, you feel like you’re really up on the field here. Most of these holes, you’re looking at just getting out with a par.”

Kevin and Kyle are two shots back at -6 under par, Kevin with a great round of -4 under par 68, while Kyle struggled to +1 over par 73.

There are three players at -5 under par, including Bill Hass, the first round leader who could only manage a +4 over par round today. Joining him on that -5 under par score are Justin Rose and Matt Jones.

The next group of players are all at -4 under par, J.J. Henry also had a -4 under par round 68, Adam Scott was -3 under, Scott Piercy had a -1 under round while Charl Schwartzel collapsed with a +4 over par round.

Missing the cut are; Sang-Moon Bae, Geoff Ogilvy, Branden Grace, Brandt Snedeker, Guan Tianlang (a), Dustin Johnson, and Vijay Singh. Quite a high-profile list.

Tiger Woods +8 over and Rory McIlroy +6 over par, the world’s number one and two were lucky to make the cut.

Tiger reported after his poor round;

“The conditions were tough and when I missed it cost me. I caught the wrong gusts at the wrong time, made a couple bad swings and all in all, it just went the wrong way.”

The Memorial Tournament, Hass Has the Lead. Play Suspended.

Bill Haas has a three shot lead at the suspension of play in the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Course. The second round was briefly suspended for 22 minutes early during the second round, due to the threat of a thunderstorm, and then again later, delayed for nearly an hour and a half for rain before the horn sounded for a third time to halt play for good. Not even the great Jack Nicklaus can control the weather.

Having a blast

Bill Haas, makes light work of the sand trap/ PGA Tour

Bill shot a second round of -5 under par 67 to top the leader board on -9 under par at the suspension of play on the second day. Many think that the inspiration has come from his new-born son Bill Jnr. Plus because he is away from home he is getting a good nights sleep;

” She certainly is toughing it out through the nights by herself, if anything else, it makes me that much more excited to get home. I had a great two weeks off, I had a son, I’ve been having great fun with that at home with my wife. And I think I’m just in a better frame of mind than I was three weeks ago after missing my second cut in a row. I don’t know if I give that credit or just the break was nice. And I love being under the radar, that’s fine with me. Let your clubs do the talking and hopefully at the end of the week I’m happy to surprise anyone. Even though I’ve never really had great success here personally, I love coming back, look forward to it every year, and part of it might be I’ve always known how much my dad liked it and how well he did here. Hopefully I can continue on the weekend and get a better taste in my mouth on how to play it as opposed to just liking it. It’s hard to imagine, golf obviously runs in our family and he’ll definitely be around it, no matter what. But I certainly won’t push him into it. I hope I’m playing long enough that he can caddy for me.”

Bill caddied for his father Jay, at the Memorial. He was in college at the time, and he doesn’t remember where Jay finished, other than that he had a nice week. So did Bill, who earned some extra spending money by wearing a Memorial cap with his caddy bib.