Notebook: Haircuts gone bad for two South Africans at Presidents Cup

Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen at the Presidents Cup
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Charl Schwartzel (l) and Louis Oosthuizen showed the effects of their surprisingly short haircuts on Tuesday at the Presidents Cup.
By
Doug Ferguson
Associated Press

Series: PGA Tour

DUBLIN, Ohio – Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel treated themselves to some of the amenities at the Presidents Cup when a barber came to their team room to give haircuts to half the team. 

The barber won 2-up. 

"Louis and myself, we were guinea pigs," Schwartzel said. "He went first and basically lost all his hair. And then I figured I just needed a little touch-up on the sides, and I ended up losing all my hair. None of the other guys volunteered to go." 

Oosthuizen sheepishly removed his cap to show what the USGA might term a "closely mown area" over the ears. 

"I didn't work out as well as we thought," Oosthuizen said. "We ended up shaving everything off. Walking into the team room last night, the two of us, we looked like we came straight out of the Army. This morning, waking up and looking at each other, we just laughed." 

Schwartzel's hair was even shorter. 

"I didn't even recognize Charl when I walked in the room," Ernie Els said. "It was like, `What the hell happened to you?' They don't even cut out hair like that in the Army back in the day." 

Oosthuizen figured it would at least count toward team spirit. If it's any consolation, most of the U.S. team got crew cuts on the Saturday night of the 1999 Ryder Cup, and then they produced the greatest comeback in history by rallying from a 10-6 deficit at The Country Club. 

TIGER AND DUF: Jason Dufner figures he's being selfish by asking to be Tiger Woods' partner during some of the team matches at the Ryder Cup. 

"He's the greatest player in the world, maybe the greatest of all time," Dufner said. "I can say I was his partner in the Presidents Cup." 

It would be the 10th partner Woods has had in the Presidents Cup, and 19th when adding the Ryder Cup. 

Oddly enough, it was his first pairing with Woods as a pro that first taught Dufner how to handle large crowds. 

Woods was the top draw at the 2009 Australian Masters at Kingston Heath, which featured record crowds and an atmosphere as big as any major championship that year. Dufner was between stops in China and Japan, and IMG provided the unheralded American a sponsor's exemption to the Australian Masters. 

They were paired in the third round – Dufner had a 71, Woods a 72. Dufner played in the group ahead of Woods on the last day – still a huge crowd as the gallery waited for Woods – and he tied for third. Woods won the tournament, his last victory before his personal life unraveled. 

"That was just wall-to-wall people," Dufner said. "He was No. 1 in the world and it was my first time playing before a crowd that big. I think I did all right." 

NEXT STOP: The 50 players who earned their cards through the Web.com Tour Finals don't have much time to start making plans for the PGA Tour season. It starts next week in California at the Frys.com Open. 

Ryo Ishikawa might have been the only player at Sawgrass who already has a World Golf Championship on the horizon. 

Ishikawa is eligible for the HSBC Champions in Shanghai at the end of the month – with an $8.5 million purse – based on his win last year in the Taiheiyo Masters on the Japan Golf Tour. Like other WGCs, it has no cut. 

It was reminiscent of when Carlos Franco made it through the old version of Q-School in November 1998, even though he broke his putter and used his driver on the greens over the last seven holes. Franco was asked after getting his card where he could play next. His answer took a minute to digest. 

The Presidents Cup. 

Franco had won twice on the Japan Golf Tour that year and his world ranking was high enough to make the International team. 

DIVOTS: Former Cincinnati Reds third baseman Chris Sabo and former Seattle Mariners pitcher Erik Hanson are among those playing the U.S. Mid-Amateur that starts Saturday at the Country Club of Birmingham. ... Thomas O'Toole, Jr. has been nominated to serve a one-year term as president of the USGA. O'Toole, who has spent the past two years as vice president, is to be formally elected Feb. 8 at the USGA's annual meeting at Pinehurst. ... Luke List led the PGA Tour in driving distance. He failed to keep his card. ... Women's British Open champion Stacy Lewis will represent the LPGA Tour along with Natalie Gulbis and Cristie Kerr in the Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge on Nov. 12 at Rio Secco in Las Vegas. 

STAT OF THE WEEK: Ernie Els has partnered players from every continent (except Europe) in the Presidents Cup. 

FINAL WORD: "That's how you win golf tournaments. It's not how many birdies you make, it's not many mistakes you don't." – Tommy "Two Gloves" Gainey.