Notebook: For Johnson, not winning didn't mean 2011 season was failure

zach johnson
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Winning a PGA Tour event was the only one of his 2011 goals that Zach Johnson didn't accomplish.
By
Doug Ferguson
Associated Press

Series: PGA Tour

Before showing up for his final tournament of the year, Zach Johnson met with his team for a two-day summit to assess the season and look ahead to 2012. He failed to win for the first time since 2006, but the year didn’t feel like a failure.

“We looked at the goals we had,” Johnson said halfway through the Chevron World Challenge. “We have three or four specific goals, and I accomplished all of them but one. And the one I didn’t, I was awfully close.

“For the most part, it was all pretty good. You’d think we would have a banner year, but we didn’t,” he said. “The more I chewed on it, the more I realized it was going the right way.”

The next day, he shot 68 to take a one-shot lead and wound up losing to a birdie-birdie finish by Tiger Woods, which would seem to indicate he is heading in the right direction.

Even so, nothing beats holding a trophy.

“I don’t think winning is the only formula for a great year,” he said. “But you want to win. That’s why you play.”

HAVE CLUBS, WILL PULL A TROLLEY: As long as Laura Davies has been playing tournament golf, she managed to do something new during the Indian Open earlier this month on the Ladies European Tour.

She didn’t bother taking a caddie.

Davies said her caddie was having visa troubles and didn’t make it to New Delhi. The English star lost patience and instead of hiring a local caddie decided to take care of it herself.

“Ended up having to pull my own trolley around, which is the first time I’ve done that in 26 years on tour,” Davies said. “I shot 3 over the first day. He made it for the second round, but it didn’t work out. I missed the cut.”

Davies doesn’t get flustered easily. This was an exception.

“The officials were like, `You should take a local.’ But I was just irritated,” Davies said. “So I just wanted to get out there, try and shoot something that wasn’t going to ruin the week, and I ended up shooting 3 over and the week was over before it got started.

“These things happen, but it was a shame.”

DIVOTS: Seven players between No. 126 and No. 150 on the money list last year with conditional status finished among the top 125 to earn full cards for 2012. … Five Americans have been picked for the Curtis Cup, which will be June 8-10 at Nairn in Scotland. They are Amy Anderson, Lindy Duncan, Austin Ernst, Tiffany Lua and Brooke Pancake. The other three will be selected next month. … There were 501 tee shots that went at least 360 yards on the PGA Tour this year.

STAT OF THE WEEK: Of the 200 hardest holes on the PGA Tour this year, only one was a par 5 -- the 14th hole at Pebble Beach was tied for 20th with an average score of 5.341.

FINAL WORD: “It’s a funny old fuddy-duddy game, but I love it. And I quite understand if people don’t. But it’s something very, very special, and I’m very honored to be a part of it.” -- British commentator Peter Alliss, upon his selection for the World Golf Hall of Fame.