Golf Buzz

October 11, 2015 - 5:31am
mark.aumann's picture

Good things come to those who wait, especially when it comes to golf.

Charley Walters of the St. Paul Pioneer Press had this brief in his Saturday column:

Joe Fletcher from Akeley, Minn., playing at Tianna Country Club in Walker, scored his first hole-in-one after 50 years of golf, acing the 158-yard, No. 11 hole, with a driver. He's 90 years old.

So many cool things in that one sentence. One, just the fact that Mr. Fletcher is still playing golf at 90. Two, that he didn't start playing until he was 40, and has continued since. Three, that he can hit his driver with that kind of control!

Congratulations, and continued good health.

Chris Kirk
PGA Tour via YouTube
Chris Kirk's crucial putt on the final hole led to a shocking reversal in his match on Sunday at the Presidents Cup.
After the United States raced out to a 4-1 lead on the first day of this Presidents Cup, few would have predicted that the event would come down to the final hole of the final match of the Sunday singles. That it did was due in large part to a series of clutch putts from players on both teams throughout the crucial singles showdowns.
None of those putts was bigger than the 15-footer for par that Presidents Cup rookie Chris Kirk made on the final hole. With India's Anirban Lahiri only about three feet away, Kirk knew he had to make his putt for a critical half-point – he poured it right in, and flashed an uncharacteristic display of emotion with a fist pump.
Shockingly, Lahiri then missed his shortie, giving Kirk the match victory and giving the United States an unexpected full point in a moment that many believe was the turning point on this tense final day.
Kirk's putt was memorable, as were several others on this final day. Here are some of the best:
J.B. Holmes
PGA Tour via YouTube
Big-hitting J.B. Holmes showed his deft tough from the greenside rough in the Sunday singles.
Like many courses on the PGA Tour, the layout at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea boasts wide fairways and not-too-tough rough (at least for the pros) alongside those fairways. Where this course really gets challenging is on the sides and in back of the greens.
Much of the grass surrounding the putting surfaces is deep and grabby, and probably thicker than tournament officials planned for given the rain of the last couple days. That's why we've seen more great shots out of the bunkers this week than out of the greenside rough.
But J.B. Holmes showed us how to handle the gnarly grass during his singles match with Hideki Matsuyama. His second shot on the par-4 10th hole missed the green by about four feet, and settled down so far that you couldn't even see it as he stood over it preparing to hit. 
Holmes blasted it out, forcefully but delicately. It bounced once in the first cut – exactly where he wanted it to land – and the grass slowed the ball's momentum just enough for it to settle down and roll right into the cup for a birdie that won the hole.
Here it is:
Phil Mickelson also holed one from off the green Sunday, on the par-4 11th hole. His wasn't quite as impressive as Holmes', but is still worth a look:
Phil Mickelson
PGA Tour via YouTube
Phil Mickelson's golf ball curled into the cup at the end of a most adventurous first hole in the Sunday singles.
Regardless of how this Presidents Cup turns out, it'll go down as one of the most memorable weeks in Phil Mickelson's long and distinguished career.
Mickelson entered the week as the event's oldest player, and will leave it as the man who's played the most matches ever – and with good reason, seeing as how he's been in all 11 editions of the Presidents Cup.
Already this week, Phil has:
After all that, Mickelson surely couldn't let this final day go by without some kind of highlight, could he? No, he couldn't. And he made sure of it right off the jump.
Mickelson – wearing a parka and two black gloves – sailed the opening tee shot of his singles match against Charl Schwartzel into a spectator's umbrella off the right side of the fairway. He took a drop, then blasted an iron up toward the green, but his ball came up short and found a bunker.
And not just the bunker, but plugged near the front lip of the bunker. As we would all expect, he took a big cut and somehow blasted out to 11 feet. And then, of course, he made the putt – but the ball didn't just go in the hole, it curled from right to left across the face of the hole, then used about 270 degrees' worth of lip before it finally tumbled in.
Just call it a routine par, and the latest highlight in a week full of them for Phil the Thrill. And best of all – it was good enough to win the hole. Check it out:
After witnessing this incredible display, we can only agree with Ben Crane:
October 10, 2015 - 10:38am
mark.aumann's picture
If you were looking for a Jason Day-Jordan Spieth singles showdown Sunday at the Presidents Cup, it's not happening.

INCHEON, South Korea -- The pairings for the 12 singles matches scheduled for Sunday at the 2015 Presidents Cup (times listed are Korea time, 13 hours ahead of Eastern time):

Match 19, 9:15 a.m.: 
Patrick Reed (USA) vs. Louis Oosthuizen (INT)

Match 20, 9:27 a.m.:
Rickie Fowler (USA) vs. Adam Scott (INT)

Match 21, 9:39 a.m.:
Dustin Johnson (USA) vs. Danny Lee (INT)

Match 22, 9:51 a.m.:
J.B. Holmes (USA) vs. Hideki Matsuyama (INT)

Match 23, 10:03 a.m.:
Bubba Watson (USA) vs. Thongchai Jaidee (INT)

Match 24, 10:15 a.m.:
Jimmy Walker (USA) vs. Steven Bowditch (INT)

Match 25, 10:27 a.m.:
Phil Mickelson (USA) vs. Charl Schwartzel (INT)

Match 26, 10:39 a.m.:
Chris Kirk (USA) vs. Anirban Lahiri (INT)

Match 27, 10:51 a.m.:
Jordan Spieth (USA) vs. Marc Leishman (INT)

Match 28, 11:03 a.m.:
Zach Johnson (USA) vs. Jason Day (INT)

Match 29, 11:15 a.m.:
Matt Kuchar (USA) vs. Branden Grace (INT)

Match 30, 11:27 a.m.:
Bill Haas (USA) vs. Sangmoon Bae (INT)

October 10, 2015 - 8:05am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Phil Mickelson, Presidents Cup, Rickie Fowler, Patrick Reed
@PGATOUR on Twitter
For good luck -- we guess -- Rickie Fowler and Patrick Reed rubbed the belly of Phil Mickelson during Presidents Cup action on Saturday.

What do you do to bring yourself good luck on the golf course?

If you're Rickie Fowler and Patrick Reed in the Presidents Cup, it's simple -- rub the belly of Phil Mickelson.


Yep. That was a thing on Saturday in South Korea. As Fowler and Reed made the turn in their morning foursomes match, Mickelson was on the practice green getting in some work before his afternoon fourball session.

RELATED: Presidents Cup scoring | Saturday's photos | U.S. clings to one-point advantage

When Fowler and Reed crossed paths with Mickelson, Lefty approached the two to wish them well when the pair instinctively rubbed the belly of the 11-time U.S. Presidents Cup team member.

See for yourself:


Unfortunately, it didn't quite work out for Reed and Fowler, who lost the match to Louis Oosthuizen and Branden Grace, 3 and 2.

The U.S. will take a one-point lead into Sunday's singles matches.