FRIDAY  | NOVEMBER 9, 2018
by John Fischer III

On Friday of Thanksgiving weekend, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson will tee it up at Shadow Creek in Las Vegas for an exhibition match. The purse, $9 million: new. Shown only on pay-per-view TV: new. No gallery at the course: new. Big-time players in an exhibition: part of the game since the dawn of professional golf.

Exhibitions were a mainstay for professional golfers from the 1850s to the start of the PGA Tour, TV and the injection of big money in a series of scheduled tournaments.

 



As a start, ban the tedium on and near greens
After hitting the ball to wedge distance, when did it become sort of routine for a touring pro to walk all the way to the green, study it, then return to his ball? (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Nov. 8; Nov. 7; (“It’s time to call foul on Tour’s stall tactics,” Nov. 6).

A conversation with his caddie generally ensues, and grass clippings are tossed into the air. A club is selected, then rejected, then selected again. More discussion follows, before the little black book is pulled for the third or fourth time from the back pocket. Ad nauseam. So why the walk to the green? (Jordan Spieth, are you listening?)

 


A MESSAGE FROM CLUB CHAMPION
by Leonard Finkel

8 Of 9 Golfers Tested Added An Average Of 21 Yards Off The Tee

Now Get 50% off Full Bag Fittings and 33% off all other fittings*

With advances in club technology, most golfers could easily hit the ball farther and more accurately, yet a Golf Magazine study found that 90% of U.S. golfers may be playing with improperly fit clubs. Says world-renowned instructor David Leadbetter, “It never ceases to amaze me that golfers buy clubs off the shelf and assume they’re right for them. Whether you’re a great golfer or a casual one, getting a custom club fitting is one of the quickest ways to improve your game.”

 


Reported: That Tiger Woods has turned down a £2.5 million (about $3.26 million) offer to play in the European Tour’s inaugural tournament in Saudi Arabia next year, according to James Corrigan of The Telegraph newspaper in London. The Saudi government is under intense international scrutiny because of the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who reportedly was killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. The European Tour, in turn, faces criticism for going ahead with the Saudi International, to be played Jan. 31-Feb. 3 (“Pelley’s Saudi sand trap: Cancel or play?” Nov. 1).

 


3

Number of players tied atop the leaderboard after the first round of the PGA Tour’s Mayakoba Golf Classic. Americans Dominic Bozzeli, Kramer Hickok and Matt Kuchar shot 7-under 64s at El Camaleon Golf Club in Playa del Carmen on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. Kuchar's wife, Sybi, stepped in mid-round as an emergency fill-in caddie for playing competitor Zach Johnson.

 



RADIO, TV AND PODCASTS

Hawk & Rude: Golf’s sordid underside
John Hawkins and Jeff Rude chat with GolfChannel.com’s Randall Mell about a recent cheating incident in the LPGA’s Q-Series, and examine the ongoing scourge of slow play.


Grill Room powered by Vertical Groove Golf
Bryson DeChambeau won his fifth career PGA Tour event and improved to No. 5 in the world ranking. Meanwhile, Justin Rose won the Turkish Airlines Open and returned to No. 1 in the world. Bob Bubka and Jay Randolph Jr. discuss it all. Morning Read’s Alex Miceli talks about his recent commentary calling for a 10-club limit. In the Giving Back segment, Bubka speaks with Corby Robertson Jr. about the Spirit International.




FROM THE INDUSTRY

Provision Events has been commissioned to provide a fan experience at the European Tour’s DP World Tour Championship next week. Provision Events also will construct a floating green in the Arabian Gulf for the latest Hero Challenge at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

 

The 2018 Waste Management Phoenix Open has been recognized by the GEO Foundation with an international award for sustainability in golf. The WMPO was saluted for its efforts to balance environmental impacts, conserve natural resources and benefit the local community.

 

Matt Jordan, the head golf professional at Streamsong (Fla.) Resort’s Black Course, has been certified as a PGA master professional, according to KemperSports, which manages the property’s three golf courses. The certification is held by fewer than 400 of the 28,000-plus PGA professionals, according to KemperSports.

 

Youth on Course will conduct its annual online auction Nov. 11-15 for sought-after golf destinations such as Merion, Lahinch, Winged Foot, Riviera, Sand Valley and more. Youth on Course is a non-profit that provides youngsters with subsidized rounds of golf for $5 or less, college scholarships, paid internships and a caddie program.

 

Paxton O’Connor has been named to the list of “Best Young Teachers in America” for 2018-19 by Golf Digest in its November issue. O’Connor, 27, is the director of performance and instruction at Desert Mountain Club in Scottsdale, Ariz.

 


CALENDAR
November 7-10
LPGA: Blue Bay LPGA

Jian Lake Blue Bay GC, Hainan Island, China

November 8-11
European Tour: Nedbank Golf Challenge

Gary Player CC, Sun City, South Africa

PGA Tour: Mayakoba Golf Classic

El Camaleon GC, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Champions: Charles Schwab Cup Championship

Phoenix (Ariz.) CC


      
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