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  • Lines of Charm: Brilliant And Irreverent Quotes, Notes, And Anecdotes from Golf's Golden Age Architects
    Lines of Charm: Brilliant And Irreverent Quotes, Notes, And Anecdotes from Golf's Golden Age Architects
  • The Future of Golf: How Golf Lost Its Way and How to Get It Back
    The Future of Golf: How Golf Lost Its Way and How to Get It Back
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • Grounds for Golf: The History and Fundamentals of Golf Course Design
    Grounds for Golf: The History and Fundamentals of Golf Course Design
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Art of Golf Design
    The Art of Golf Design
    by Michael Miller, Geoff Shackelford
  • Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club
    Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Golden Age of Golf Design
    The Golden Age of Golf Design
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Good Doctor Returns: A Novel
    The Good Doctor Returns: A Novel
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • Masters of the Links: Essays on the Art of Golf and Course Design
    Masters of the Links: Essays on the Art of Golf and Course Design
  • The Captain: George C. Thomas Jr. and His Golf Architecture
    The Captain: George C. Thomas Jr. and His Golf Architecture
    by Geoff Shackelford
Current Reading
  • Men in Green
    Men in Green
    by Michael Bamberger
  • Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    by Dan Jenkins
  • Professional Golf 2015: The Complete Media, Fan and Fantasy Guide
    Professional Golf 2015: The Complete Media, Fan and Fantasy Guide
    by Daniel Wexler
  • The Forbidden Game: Golf and the Chinese Dream
    The Forbidden Game: Golf and the Chinese Dream
    by Dan Washburn
  • Arnie, Seve, and a Fleck of Golf History: Heroes, Underdogs, Courses, and Championships
    Arnie, Seve, and a Fleck of Golf History: Heroes, Underdogs, Courses, and Championships
    by Bill Fields
  • Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    by Dan Jenkins

    Kindle Edition

  • The Magnificent Masters: Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf, and the 1975 Cliffhanger at Augusta
    The Magnificent Masters: Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf, and the 1975 Cliffhanger at Augusta
    by Gil Capps
  • Golf Architecture in America: Its Strategy and Construction
    Golf Architecture in America: Its Strategy and Construction
    by Geo. C. Thomas
  • The Course Beautiful : A Collection of Original Articles and Photographs on Golf Course Design
    The Course Beautiful : A Collection of Original Articles and Photographs on Golf Course Design
    Treewolf Prod
  • Reminiscences Of The Links
    Reminiscences Of The Links
    by Albert Warren Tillinghast, Richard C. Wolffe, Robert S. Trebus, Stuart F. Wolffe
  • Gleanings from the Wayside
    Gleanings from the Wayside
    by Albert Warren Tillinghast
  • Planet Golf USA: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses in America
    Planet Golf USA: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses in America
    by Darius Oliver
  • Planet Golf: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses Outside the United States of America
    Planet Golf: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses Outside the United States of America
    by Darius Oliver
Writing And Videos

It must be remembered that the great majority of golfers are aiming to reduce their previous best performance by five strokes if possible, first, last and all the time, and if any one of them arrives at the home teeing ground with this possibility in reach, he is not caring two hoots whether he is driving off from nearby an ancient oak of majestic size and form or a dead sassafras. If his round ends happily it is one beautiful course. Such is human nature. A.W. TILLINGHAST



South Africa Balks At $29 Million Presidents Cup Price?

In his Golf World I Think, I Saw, I Heard notes, Tim Rosaforte says the PGA Tour blew a chance to return the Presidents Cup to South Africa in 2019 where Ernie Els would be perfectly aligned to captain.

You'll be learn that it was all about the money for the Finchem administration.

Rosaforte says the PGA Tour asking price was $29 million to hold the cup, South Africa balked, and Australia will be ponying up $25 million to host the Cup as well as next year's World Cup.


Tape-Delayed Presidents Cup Ratings Way Down

Not surprisingly, Paulsen at Sports Media Watch reports a big drop in NBC's re-broadcast of the Presidents Cup Saturday and Sunday.

He writes:

Tape delayed coverage of golf’s Presidents Cup drew a 0.9 overnight rating on NBC both Saturday and Sunday, down 18% from the comparable telecasts in 2011 — the last time the event was held overseas (1.1 on both days). The 2013 event took place in the United States, earning overnights of 2.2 on Saturday and 2.5 on Sunday.

Much more positive and maybe even a little astounding is the solid Friday night number Golf Channel drew for the live broadcast of Saturday play in Korea. lists the .1, 569,000 average over a lengthy 6 pm to 5:24 am Saturday window.


President Obama Plays Torrey Pines South, Crashes Wedding

Tod Leonard with no shortage of fun details on President Barack Obama's (sort of) impromptu round at Torrey Pines South Saturday.

Besides only clearing a few times to fit him in, the President used cart 44 and his green fee was paid for by staff.

As late as Saturday, the round was in doubt due to Obama’s schedule, but they got confirmation on Saturday evening that the game was on. City Golf Manager Marney shuffled some tee times to create a small window at 12:45 p.m., but otherwise there weren’t any special requests to limit play. (And yes, Obama's two foursomes paid the green fees.)

“The secret service guys were very sensitive about that. They didn’t want to inconvenience other people,” Marney said.

As arranged, Obama’s motorcade arrived at the closed north end of the range, where he greeted local officials and got his pyramid of pristine practice balls. Casagranda was among those who shook his hand and apologized for the unseasonable 90-degree heat.

“He said, ‘That’s OK, it’ll help me stay loose,’ “ Casagranda said.

The President crashed a wedding at The Lodge just off the 18th green, creating an epic blog post for the lucky couple.


Forward Press: Next Wave Of New Media Golf Content?

With music mogul Irving Azoff capping off an impressive first season of Callaway Live Tuesday at 9 pm ET, I explore the ambitious first season as well as the possibility of other manufacturers getting into the content business.

Taylor Made is rumored to be looking at doing a similar show, while Titleist, PING and Cobra are already doing quality video content for their websites. Considering how much of Golf Channel's inventory is now devoted to live tournament action and with Back9 network long gone, viewers may have their appetite for talk, equipment design insights and lifestyle entertainment fed by the people who sell them clubs.

Also this week: Golf Channel's Jordan Spieth special and woohoo, opening day for the PGA Tour.


A Final Word About Jack Nicklaus Golf Club

We were given little reason to want to watch Jack Nicklaus Golf Club heading into the 2015 Presidents Cup. Whether it was the lack of information or the quality of the imagery shared prior to the event, there was little indication that the venue would be a key and welcome protaganist in the drama.

But as I wrote in Golf World, for those who stayed up late or watched the replays, it was hard to take your eyes off the place. Yes, it was overshaped and there were faux rocks, but the natural areas looked natural, the bunkers eye-catching and the number of risk-reward holes plentiful. Bunker placement looked different than the stock Nicklaus signature design, meaning that even with soft conditions, players were still asked to make decisions.

Folks who say the golf course doesn't matter in Cup events have great evidence with Jack Nicklaus Golf Club that design can add to the viewing pleaser.

It also helped that the crowds were so vocal in an endearing way. Then there was the cool juxtaposition of balls flying against high-rises, and even the clubhouse exuding a stylish vibe.

We talked about this on Morning Drive today.

And here is a press release on the clubhouse (for those of you curious about the design concept).

As golf fans turn their attention to this week’s President’s Cup golf match in South Korea, they may want to pay special attention to the Jack Nicklaus Golf Clubhouse – a space designed by Los Angeles-based Mehrdad Yazdani of the Yazdani Studio of CannonDesign.

The clubhouse is embedded amidst the 18-hole championship course on which the world’s best golfers – like Jordan Spieth and Jason Day – will compete to help their respective teams win the cup. The event is arguably the most notable international golf event in the South Korea’s history.

“It’s an honor to have designed the clubhouse for such a remarkable destination,” said Yazdani. “The selection of this venue to host the President’s Cup is a testament to the high level of excellence that defines the clubhouse, course and surrounding golf community.” The Jack Nicklaus Golf Club is setting a new standard for golf and lifestyle across Asia. The 50,000 sf clubhouse is uniquely designed to reveal itself over time – as sunlight passes through certain openings at different times of day, community members are greeted by freshly revealed details and vistas.

The building also takes cues from Asian architecture and feng shui, creating visual connections with the surrounding natural environment. Key design features like undulating roofs that echo rolling greens strengthen the connection to the golf course. The clubhouse and the community at large offer striking views of the surrounding nature preserve and nearby sea – creating an elegant, restful atmosphere for visitors.

The high level of programmatic needs for the clubhouse would have typically resulted in a large, imposing structure. However, the design strategy distributes public and program spaces across several connected, yet discrete pavilions. This strategy enables a remarkably elegant facility capable of highly efficient service.


NBC To Take Over Open Championship Coverage In 2016

Multiple sources confirm that ESPN will be stepping away from its R&A broadcast arrangement a year early, with NBC/Golf Channel stepping in to handle the 2016 Open Championship and other R&A events.

This comes as little surprise considering the BBC's recent decision to walk away a year early and news of ESPN shedding contracts and select rights deals as part of Disney-mandated cost cutting. The Worldwide Leader recently cancelled its annual fall survey trip to Great Britain as part of its Open Championship, Senior Open Championship and Women's British Open planning, signaling to its golf teams the end of a multi-decade arrangement.

NBC/Golf Channel won a bidding war for The Open beginning in 2017, but will now head into the 2016 Open at Royal Troon with its first major championship since losing the USGA package in 2013 to Fox Sports.

NBC/Golf Channel is also carrying next summer's return of golf to the Olympic Games.

This leaves ESPN with the Masters Thursday/Friday coverage and other Augusta National-controlled amateur events as its only remaining golf telecasts.

An ESPN on ABC team will handle November's CME final round.


2015 Presidents Cup Wrap: So Many Winners

Yes there was some fantastic choking down the stretch, but other than Sangmoon Bae having to stare at military barrack ceilings the next two years hoping Kim Jong-un doesn't start a war, you have to think everyone who participated in the 2015 Presidents Cup will come out a winner. Just check out some of the "numbers" from Golf Channel's Editorial Research unit courtesy of Al Tays and you can see the week maybe being a breakthrough one for Branden Grace or Marc Leishman or Chris Kirk, and maybe even for Anirban Lahiri.

Doug Ferguson does a nice job summing up the key moments down Sunday's stretch.

That's what the International team wanted when it demanded the number of matches be reduced (from 34 to 30). It almost got something even better — the shiny gold trophy that again stays with the Americans.

"Irrelevant of the outcome — we obviously would have loved to have won — we put on a show of golf this week," captain Nick Price said.

The final session was not without its share of heartbreak.

Anirban Lahiri, the first player from India to make the International team, battled Kirk shot-for-shot over the final hour holes and looked like a winner when he played a delicate pitch to perfection on the par-5 18th and had 4 feet for birdie. Kirk's chip ran 15 feet by. Based on the status of other matches still on the course, it looked like the International team would finally emerge a winner.

And then Kirk made his putt on the final turn, and one of the most stoic players on the PGA Tour unleashed a fist pump.

Moments later, Lahiri missed.

His putt caught the right edge of the cup and spun out, and he dropped his putter over his back in disbelief.

"I have to give credit to Chris for making that putt," Lahiri said. "These things are scripted, I guess, and I wasn't in the script this time."

Rex Hoggard has more on that pivotal Lahiri-Kirk match, which you have to figure will produce two players better off for having played under some decent pressure.

Hoggard also considers the pick that was Phil Mickelson. Never dull and generally a huge help, Mickelson had another fascinating Cup week.

The veteran’s only misstep came during his Friday fourball match when he switched to a “firmer [golf] ball” on the seventh tee to violate the one-ball condition. The penalty was a one-hole “adjustment to the state of the match,” and the American duo halved the match with Scott and Day.

Mickelson seemed to compound that miscue, and provide the Internationals with bulletin board material, when he said, “I feel like we spotted the Internationals’ best team [Day and Scott] two holes and they still couldn't beat us. Just saying.”

Otherwise Mickelson’s play was inspired and he demonstrated why the U.S. team lobbied Haas to make him what many considered a “players’ pick.”

And then there was the other pick. Dave Shedloski on the captain's son thriving under immense pressure bringing up the rear in Sunday singles.

Fast forward to Sunday at Jack Nicklaus GC, where Jay Haas, the U.S. captain in the Presidents Cup, could do nothing but watch as his son battled local favorite Sang-Moon Bae in the 12th and final singles match with the Presidents Cup hanging in the balance. Playing for your teammates and your country are pressure enough, but when your father, who used one of his two wildcard picks on you, is the captain, and you’ve gone winless in two previous matches, breathing ceases to be involuntary.

"It was different from anything else I’ve ever felt on a golf course,” said Bill, trying to recall the sensation of competing with so much riding on the outcome. "There were so many things running through my head. I had trouble concentrating. I don’t know how I got through it.”

One non-winner in the matches was the NBC crew, who Martin Kaufmann points out talked over way too many player conversations and did a poor job with utilizing screen acreage to update where matches stood during singles, something I found frustrating during such close matches where a single point actually, for a change, made a difference.

Serious fans are almost forced to keep tabs on matches on a second screen.

NBC’s answer is to stop its coverage to show us a 1970s-style leaderboard. About four hours into singles, NBC even felt the need to have Hicks spend 85 seconds reciting the scores “to catch you up on the matches.” It was like listening to a DJ give the baseball scores on an old AM radio.


Fitzpatrick Win Will Make Him Youngest Top 100 Player

While most of the golfing world was paying attention to the Presidents Cup, the British Masters was taken in wire-to-wire fashion by Matthew Fitzpatrick, 2013 U.S. Amateur champion who also attended Northwestern for about 20 minutes.

The win, which gave the re-born British Masters a little extra juice in an already successful relaunch, justifies the former Walker Cupper's decision to bail on school and adds yet another over-achieving youngster to the growing list of young talents.

Dempster writes:

However, add in the fact that this two-shot success means Fitzpatrick has become the youngest player to break into the world’s top 100 – he’s expected to move into the top 60 from 111th when the latest standings are published today – and the future lying ahead of the Yorkshireman could well see him become the heir apparent to European No 1 McIlroy.

“This is an unbelievable feeling and I know it won’t sink in for a long time,” admitted Fitzpatrick, who has moved to the top of the Ryder Cup points table and leapt to 12th in the Race 
to Dubai after picking up a 
trophy that had previously been in the hands of players like Lee Trevino, Seve Ballesteros, Greg Norman, Sandy Lyle, Ian 
Woosnam and Nick Faldo."

As James Corrigan notes in his Telegraph story, Fitzpatrick is a man of modest needs right now, with his real focus on the golfing perk that is the world top 50.

Fitzpatrick also said this week that he wanted to earn enough to replace his Ford, which is the source of some “banter” in the locker room, with his fellow pros nicknaming him “Mondeo Man”. Yet this son of a bank manager has a bigger prize in mind.

Since playing in the Masters as an amateur two years ago it has been his mission to get back there as a pro. This victory lifts him from 111th in the rankings to the top 65 and within sight of the top-50 placing he requires. He knows what is at stake in the next couple of months.

“If you’re in the top 50 it opens so many doors and my dad says it’s self-perpetuating,” Fitzpatrick said. “The money is bigger, ranking points are bigger and your card is easier to keep.

He and his brother celebrated by having a big night out on the town...


How did @MattFitz94 celebrate his win? With dinner at @Subway of course! 🍟 (📷 via Ted Brady). #BritishMasters

A photo posted by European Tour (@europeantour) on Oct 11, 2015 at 1:30pm PDT



Brandel: Tiger And Phil Don't Deserve To Be Cup Captains

Look, I know Tiger's driving record has a blemish but that was an Escalade, not a four-seat, patriotic Club Car. And Phil has had his Cup moments, but they showed up in some form at both task force meetings!

That didn't stop Brandel Chamblee from calling out both for not having shown the passion that others have for cup events, and therefore, ruling them out as future captains in his mind. Not that the people who make such decisions will take note, but it is a provocative point Chamblee threw out following the news that Tiger was trying to do some Presidents Cup coaching from his couch.

The key quote:

“I don’t really think it’s appropriate to give players a leadership role in an event that they didn’t show interest or passion for when they were competitors.”

He also uses the corrupt word and Mickelson with regards to off course antics and says "they don't deserve it."

The full clip, where Brandel's comments end with a turn to the panel, that includes David Duval, who wanted to be paid for playing in the Ryder Cup. Awkward!


Tiger Ready And Willing To Be A '16 Ryder Cup Cart Driver

Nice catch by Dave Shedloski over in Korea and writing for Ryder Cup task force member Tiger Woods and new nominee for Couch Potato Of The Year took time away from his DraftKings homework to call Presidents Cup captain Jay Haas.

When 2016 Ryder Cup captain Davis Love was put on the phone, Woods said he's ready if he doesn't qualify for Hazeltine to trade in his sticks, set aside his pride and give WAGs and PGA of America officials a ride to the next tee.

"He [Woods] was watching at home and he just had to call," Love said. "He was talking about all the things he thought we needed to do, and he had a lot of ideas. We're already doing a lot of planning for next year, and it's great. It's part of the whole process that started after Gleneagles. Everybody is thinking about it, which is great."

Love said the next task for him is naming assistant captains. Woods is a candidate, among many, if he doesn't qualify for the U.S. team. "But we're not waiting around for that. We've already been doing a lot of planning," Love said. "And Tiger is just as interested as the rest of us to get going."


Spoiler Alert: Presidents Cup An Instant Classic

With most of the country asleep after seeing what looked on paper like an uninspired set of final day singles, including an unintentional effort to prevent a Spieth-Day showdown, NBC's Presidents Cup Sunday replay at noon ET will come in handy.

If you stayed up and just need a recap or the suspense is killing you, here is G.C. Digital's roundup of the 12 matches.

And Steve DiMeglio's game story for USA Today is here.

It's the first of what will be many stories describing a real doozy of a final day that included a surprising blowout, clutch putts, choking of the all-out projectile vomiting variety, and for good measure, a father-son moment.


Video Surfaces (Sort Of) From Mid-Amateur's Historic Par-4 Ace!

The Fox crew's man on site, Abraham Zapruder Jr., was capturing some fantastic B-roll from a grassy knoll for the year-end recap show and appears to have captured Sammy Schmitz's historic reaction.


You may recall that Schmitz aced the par-4 sixteenth in the U.S. Mid-Amateur final at John's Island. The USGA's "game changing" new broadcast agreement meant no on-site coverage from partner Fox, so we'll have to make due do with B-roll.

Tweeted by the USGA and noticed by reader Jesse, who was following the match.



Presidents Cup Actually Close! Note Viewing Window Change

It's turned out to be a bit of a shame that this Presidents Cup has been played in the middle of night for most American fans. The Jack Nicklaus Golf Club has played way better than it was billed in pre-tournament imagery, the fan reactions and passion have been oh-so-refreshing and while the golf has been shockingly bad for elite players at times, the matches have been compelling.

For a change, the cup is actually up for grabs going into Sunday! 

Whether it's the format change, some home field advantage or just more spirited play from the new International blood, Doug Ferguson explains that Sunday's finale should be close.

Not since the matches were tied going into Sunday in 2005 has the Presidents Cup featured a final day of drama.

"This is what we all came here for — for it to be exciting tomorrow," International captain Nick Price said. "I'm going to ask my team to go and play golf tomorrow. Each and every one of them has to play golf, and play to the very best of their ability. That's all we can do."

Because tee times have been moved up an hour Sunday in anticipation of weather, Golf Channel will start live coverage at 8 pm ET Saturday night. The full lineup:

Below are Golf Channel and NBC’s Presidents Cup live and re-air schedule for Saturday (today) and Sunday.
Presidents Cup Saturday Golf Channel and NBC Programming Schedule (all times Eastern)
Noon-3:30 p.m.                       Day 3 Re-air                                        NBC
3:30-7 p.m.                              Day 3 Four-Ball Matches Re-air         Golf Channel
7-8 p.m.                                   Live From the Presidents Cup            Golf Channel
8 p.m.-2 a.m.                           Presidents Cup, Final Day (Live)       Golf Channel
Presidents Cup Sunday Golf Channel and NBC Programming Schedule (all times Eastern)
2-4:30 a.m.                              Live From the Presidents Cup            Golf Channel
Noon-6 p.m.                            Presidents Cup, Final Day (Re-air)     NBC
6-7 p.m.                                   Live From the Presidents Cup            Golf Channel
7 p.m.-1 a.m.                           Presidents Cup, Final Day (Re-air)     Golf Channel


2019 Presidents Cup Headed To The Sandbelt!

Royal Melbourne is the presumed course, but a Kingston Heath or Victoria Golf Club would be nice too. As Ben Everill notes, the sandbelt is still home to the only International win (perhaps until 2015?).

And for good measure, the World Cup will return Down Under in 2016 after returning from the Blues Brothers' exclusive three year tour of Europe, Scandinavia and the sub-continent.

The 2011 Presidents Cup was one of the best sports events I've ever attended and no doubt will be a hit upon the third rendition in '19. Here are my photos (Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4).

For Immediate Release:

Victoria, Australia awarded two prestigious international golf events in partnership with International Federation of PGA Tours, PGA TOUR: World Cup of Golf in 2016, The Presidents Cup in 2019

SONGDO IBD, INCHEON CITY, KOREA (October 10, 2015) – At The Presidents Cup in Songdo IBD, Incheon City, Korea – the first ever played in Asia – PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem was joined by the Honorable John Eren, Victoria Minister for Tourism and Major Events, to announce an agreement between the two organizations that names the State of Victoria as the host for the World Cup of Golf in 2016 and The Presidents Cup in 2019.  The partnership marks a return of The Presidents Cup to Australia for the third time in its 25-year history and fifth time in the 58-year history of the World Cup of Golf.
Both events will be played in the November timeframe in 2016 and 2019 on one of Melbourne’s premier Sandbelt Golf Courses. The venue and exact dates will be announced at a later time.
“The PGA TOUR and the International Federation of PGA Tours are elated to partner with the State of Victoria and bring The Presidents Cup and World Cup of Golf back to Australia,” said Finchem.  “Australia is home to some of the best golfers on the PGA TOUR – not to mention some of the world’s most passionate fans – and we know Victoria will stage wonderful events for the competitors, as well as fans visiting and watching around the globe.  The success of the recent 2011 Presidents Cup and 2013 World Cup of Golf has reinforced Victoria’s stature as a global golf destination and make the area a perfect choice to welcome these esteemed competitions back within the next four years.”
Honorable John Eren said, “We’re committed to growing our enviable calendar of major events, and securing events like The Presidents Cup and the World Cup of Golf do just that. We can’t wait to welcome golf fans from all over the world to visit our renowned Sandbelt and see for themselves what makes Victoria great.”
As a premier destination for golf enthusiasts in Australia and around the globe, Victoria is well-positioned to stage another exhilarating chapter in the World Cup of Golf and Presidents Cup history.  The inclusion of these high-ranking global tournaments in the Victorian events calendar promises up to $66 million in additional economic impact to the State, thanks to an estimated 25,500 visitors and up to 408 new jobs being created.
Melbourne hosted the World Cup of Golf in 1959, 1972, 1988 and 2013.   In 2013, the event was a 72-hole stroke play tournament held at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club.  Jason Day shot a final-round 70 to win the individual tournament, and he paired with Adam Scott to claim the team prize.  In 2016, the World Cup will return to its original team format.
The Presidents Cup was previously held at in Melbourne in 1998 and 2011, at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club (both Day and Scott were members of the 2011 International Team). No other international venue has hosted a Presidents Cup more than once.  Melbourne also holds the distinction as the site of the only International Team’s outright victory in 1998, which saw Peter Thomson’s International team defeat Jack Nicklaus’ U.S. Team 20.5 to 11.5.  In 2011, Fred Couples led the U.S. Team to a 19-15 win over Greg Norman and the Internationals.
“I’m very, very happy that we’re returning to Melbourne, where I won the World Cup,” said Day, one of four Australians competing in The Presidents Cup 2015. “Whether we play at Royal Melbourne or some other golf course, I just like playing that sort of golf, and being back in front of the home crowd will be fantastic. And for up and coming players from Australia, they have something to shoot for – that goal of getting on that Presidents Cup team and playing in their home country.”
“It’s exciting news, anytime Australia gets big events” said Scott, a seven-time Presidents Cup participant. “Obviously with the World Cup going back and Jason and I having won it the last time it was played in Melbourne, I look forward to hopefully playing again, and the same for The Presidents Cup.  These events coming back will keep inspiring another generation of Australian players, and for all the fans in the country to get the chance to see the best players from around the world is really thrilling. Melbourne is a great city for hosting events of this magnitude.”  
“Professional golf in Australia continues to produce players who perform best at the highest levels of competition,” said Commissioner of the PGA Tour Australasia Brian Thorburn.  “The return of The Presidents Cup and World Cup of Golf to Australia is a symbol of the continued growth of golf in the country and a testament to the quality and success of its players competing around the world.”


Wrap: Mickelson Wrong Ball, Wrong Ruling Antics

AP's Doug Ferguson leads with the oddity of a veteran like Phil Mickelson encountering a situation he'd never seen (a match adjustment penalty), and one started by his switching to a harder ball in hopes of reaching a par-5 in two.

But with this score adjustment for a rules violation element, reader RM makes a fair point: there is no such thing as dormie if you're two down with one to go! Woohoo!

Anyway, from Ferguson's story:

"I was talking with Jay and I just thought, 'Gosh, I'm going to ask. I'm sure it's not an issue,'" Mickelson said. "And it turns out that there was a one-ball rule and it was an issue. As a player, you need to know that. You need to know the rules, and if you have a question, you do it beforehand."

No one knew the ramifications.

The penalty for violating the one-ball rule is called a one-hole adjustment, meaning the one hole is awarded to the other team.

But the rules committee erred when it told Mickelson that he was out of the hole, and Mickelson picked up his ball. Because the one-hole adjustment already had been assessed, Mickelson should have been able to finish the hole. He was in the fairway just over 290 yards from the hole, which he could have reached with a good shot.

But he never got that chance. Day made birdie and won the hole, so the International team went 2 up heading to the eighth hole.

Steve DiMeglio explains the committee's effort to remedy its error.

Although the Match Committee realized that it incorrectly advised Mickelson, under Decision 34-2/6 of the Rules of Golf, the committee is not allowed to have Mickelson go back and play in an attempt to correct the error. According to a statement released by the committee, "Once any player in the match plays a subsequent stroke allowing a correction could potentially undermine the strategy already employed by both sides in the match in completing the hole."

Here is the committee decision released to the media, tweeted by Ferguson:

Sean Martin covers the other key match moments for Mickelson-Johnson v. Day-Scott, which was halved.

The post round interview with Phil and Zach, along with Todd Lewis's thoughts on Golf Central.

All of this added up to some much needed controversy, as Rex Hoggard notes, but it did not create any new tension between the teams.

Maybe Phil Mickelson's post round comments will:


European Tour Study Says Game In Better Shape Than Billed

Alistair Tait at reports on a European Tour study designed to look at the number of golfers in Europe by no focusing solely on those who are members of clubs.

Shockingly, they found that if you count those are just range rats or play non-traditional 18-hole courses, the numbers pretty much skyrocket.

The Tour claims several shorter formats of golf are encouraging people to engage in golf, many of them juniors. Formats include: driving ranges (3.1 million active users); pitch and putt courses (2.3 million); nine-hole courses (2.2 million); putting greens (1.7 million); and par-3 or short courses (1.2 million).

The report also cites the emergence of non-traditional formats encouraging active participation, such as adventure or mini-golf (2.7 million active users); computer games (1.9 million); and golf simulators (0.4 million).


The Donald Taking His Windfarm Fight To UK's Supreme Court

You have to give the man credit, he's determined!

As I've written a few times, he is right that giant windmills off the coast of Trump International will spoil views, but fascinatingly, the Scottish people don't agree because jobs are at stake.

The Guardian's Owen Bowcott reports on the latest legal saga in Scotland for Donald Trump.

The New York tycoon, who declared he was prepared to spend $1bn (£650m) to advance his political ambitions, has sufficient resources to bankroll another round of protracted, private litigation. He has already threatened to take his lawsuit to European courts if he loses in the supreme court.

Trump, 69, whose mother was Scottish, did not appear in person at the supreme court in Westminster on Thursday.


Video: Phil's Fairway Bunker Hole-out, Presidents Cup

In his Four-ball match on Day 2 of the Presidents Cup 2015, Phil Mickelson holes out of the 12th hole fairway bunker from 137 yards for eagle. This came after a bizarro one-ball rule violation that is still being sorted out as this is posted

The video:


Video: Schmitz Talks About Ace We May Never See

Easily one of the coolest stories of the year was the U.S. Mid-Amateur final with a pro jock (you know, a caddy, a looper) Marc Dull, taking on a healthcare services guy (Sammy Schmitz), a former DIII golfer whose wife and friends worked hard to get there for the finale. Oh, and then they play a great match with a historic shot.

Schmitz makes a hole in one on a par-4 to win!

Naturally, the USGA, armed with millions upon millions in revenue couldn't get their partners at Fox to share some video recorded or dvote a freelance video team to record some of the final day proceedings. (Or maybe it's all been sent off to the film processing lab for future viewing?)

If there is no video of the U.S. Mid-Amateur final in the 21st century, that's pathetic on a level that is unacceptable for a group with nearly $400 million in the bank. I repeat: $400 million! Yet no video from a championship that is comprised and followed by their core constituency.

Anyway, let's focus on Schmitz's win over Dull that was everything the mid-am was supposed to be.

Pete Kowalski has some fun anecdotes at on Schmitz's win and sets up the epic ace.

Jeff Babineau files a more extensive and really outstanding game story for on Schmitz, the match and the ace.

Schmitz, before heading to the airport or maybe en route, talked to Rich Lerner at Golf Channel about his win and the historic shot. Oh, and heading to the Masters.


U.S. Mid-Am Final Match Highlighted by Schmitz's Par-4 Ace

There's a Chris Keane photo of U.S. Mid-Amateur Champion Sammy Schmitz holding up the ball, but so far no video has surfaced of the incredible and historic hole-in-one that all but iced the 2015 final match against Marc Dull. There is, however a Ron Driscoll story on Schmitz's family and friends pulling an all-nighter to be there for the final, so at least they saw the epic 260-yard shot.

Hopefully, the USGA's broadcast partner Fox, who was there taping, will have something on Fox Sports Live later tonight? Nothing yet on the USGA YouTube page either.

Anyway, sounds like it was a compelling match based on the down-the-stretch battle, described here by Golf News Net using match tweets. Schmitz won 3&2 and with it, a Masters berth.