Monday, June 9, 2008

Leonard wins St. Jude Classic

Justin Leonard gave himself a second chance, then made the most of it as he won the six million-dollar St. Jude Classic with a birdie at the second playoff hole.

Leonard needed two holes of the playoff to dispatch Masters Champion Trevor Immelman of South Africa and Australian Robert Allenby, who like Leonard finished regulation tied at 4-under 276.

"It has been a great week," Leonard said. "When I won here in 2005, I led every day and almost let it slip away at the end. This week I've kind of been back in the pack a little bit and was able to shoot a really solid round today."

Leonard started the day three shots off the pace.

He took a one-stroke lead with a birdie on 15, but gave it right back when a wayward drive led to a bogey on 17.

At the final hole of regulation, he slid a 15-foot birdie putt just over the lip.

"Gave myself a really good putt at 18 in regulation and hit a really good putt," Leonard said. "I thought I made the putt and the ball was halfway there, and unfortunately it didn't go in but, you know, was able to hit some good shots in the playoff and make a nice putt there at 11."

Given a reprieve in the playoff, Leonard dropped a 19-foot birdie into the cup and then watched as Immelman missed his chance to extend the playoff.

All three had parred the first playoff hole.

My Thoughts
Justin is a great golfer to watch and is completely comfortable on the big stage. There has been much talk about his chance of a major within the next few years, but like many others I find it hard to look past Tiger! However, you never know! Congratulations on the great win and good luck for the future.

Sunglasses for golf

Whenever I head out onto the golf course I make sure I take my sunglasses. I don't know about you, but if I spend a lot of time in the sun without sunglasses I get a cracking headache and there is nothing worse than starting the back nine with one of those! If you are looking for Sunglasses then Optics Planet is a great online shop worth checking out. They stock a huge range of sunglasses as well as many other useful products like binoculars, telescopes, range finders, laser sights and much more. They have the best brands available and a massive range of products all with free ground shipping.

Friday, June 6, 2008

LPGA Championship - Round 1 Wrap

Seconds after striking her fourth tee shot Thursday in Havre de Grace, Md., Lorena Ochoa yelled "Fore left!" as her ball hooked ominously toward the gallery at the 415-yard 13th hole, took a big bounce and ultimately was buried in thick, waist-high grass 25 yards from the fairway.

It was an uncharacteristic blunder by the No. 1 player in the world, and over the next 10 minutes, she pondered all manner of unsatisfying options before taking a penalty shot for an unplayable lie. She then moved back 50 yards to the parallel 11th hole and somehow managed to salvage a double bogey that might have caused less poised players to lose focus.

But Ochoa never faltered.

Instead, she birdied two of the last four holes on that side, including a 40-foot birdie putt at the 422-yard No. 18, to get back to even par. With three more birdies on her bogey-free back nine, she posted a 3-under-par 69 in the opening round of the LPGA Championship at Bulle Rock, three shots off the 18-hole lead of 6-under 66 posted by veteran Lorie Kane and Futures Tour graduate Emily Bastel earlier on a hot, muggy afternoon in northeast Maryland.

After her near-calamity at No. 13, Ochoa was soon back on a seemingly relentless path toward her publicly stated goal of becoming the first woman to win all four major championships in a season. She is already halfway to a "Lorena Slam" of four straight majors, winning the British Open at St. Andrews in July and the Kraft Nabisco in April in the first major of 2008.

"I knew I had a lot of holes left, and I still had three par 5s and I'm feeling good," Ochoa said about her thought process after the debilitating early double. "I didn't get too stressed. I just thought it would be fine to make a couple of birdies on the front and finish even, and then three more on the back. So I did that.

"Today was important just not to get away too far from the leaders, and that's why I'm so happy that I did. Three under for the first day of a major is good, even though I had the double bogey. And hopefully, tomorrow I'll have a great round."

Neither of the leaders has had a top 10 finish all year, and Kane has struggled to make cuts. But they found their way across a long and soggy golf course, which took on so much rain overnight that fairways felt like carpet in a home that had been flooded.

Bastel finished her bogey-free 66 with a birdie on the 18th hole, one of two holes where the tees were moved up some 30 yards to accommodate the wet conditions.

Lindsey Wright had a 67 and was one shot behind, followed by a group at 68 that included Nicole Castrale.

Annika Sorenstam, who shot a 70, certainly had her chances, but couldn't convert several birdie putts inside 12 feet.

"Hit the ball beautifully today," said Sorenstam, a three-time LPGA champion in her final year on tour. "Just didn't make some putts today, unfortunately. But I'm very, very happy with my game..."

Read the complete article

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The perfect gift

Have you got someone in your family that is almost impossible to buy a present for? I know I certainly have and I am constantly trying to think up inventive gifts for every Christmas and birthday that comes around. Have you considered a beer of the month club, wine of the month club, coffee of the month club or something similar? These clubs send a certain amount of a different beer (coffee, wine etc) out each month a bit like a magazine subscription. This type of gift is perfect for that certain someone who has everything or is impossible to buy for!

Clubs of America have been offering monthly gift clubs since 1994. Their website is really well designed and is easy to use and order your desired membership. The Beer of the month club membership gets you (or the person you are sending this too) four twelve packs of different types of beer each month. The prices for all their club memberships are very reasonable and with their online ordering system you can choose membership length, payment term, month to begin the service and when to deliver. Whether you are interested in becoming a wine connoisseur, joining a monthly beer club or are just looking for the perfect gift for someone I recommend a visit to their website.

St. Jude Championship Round 1 Wrap

Boo Weekley grabbed a one-shot lead Thursday after the opening round of the six million-dollar St. Jude Championship, last tuneup event before the US Open.

Weekley fired a five-under-par 65 at TPC Southwind, nabbing six birdies with just one bogey.

"I drove the ball well today for a change and my irons were superb," Weekley said. "I hit my irons real good, and then my putting, my putting was excellent today."

Tommy Armour was alone in second on 66, with Fiji's Vijay Singh a further shot back on 67.

A group of seven players were tied for fourth on two-under, including Davis Love, Spain's Sergio Garcia, Justin Leonard and Aussie Stuart Appleby.

Defending champion Woody Austin stumbled out of the gate with a one-over 71. He had two birdies and a double-bogey on the par-three 14th, the dropped another shot at 17.

The tournament is the last US PGA Tour stop before the US Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego.

Many of the top Open contenders are taking the week off, but for some in Memphis it's a chance to hone their games prior to the second major championship of the year.

Armour started at the 10th tee and picked up two birdies in his first nine holes.

He added three more coming in, but a bogey at the par-three eighth dropped him a shot off the lead.

"I was happy," Armour said. "The rough isn't real deep. So, I mean, if you get blown off in the rough, it's not penal like next week would be. You've got to hit the shots because the greens are firm, and the greens are perfect. The course is in great shape."

Weekley opened with back-to-back birdies but a bogey at the fourth saw him one-under at the turn.

He birdied 10 and 12, then added two more birdies in his last three holes.

"I picked a good line there and made it," Weekley said of his closing birdie. "Pretty good putting today."

College Sports

College sports are a big deal and as an athlete getting into the college of your choice is even bigger. One of the best things you can do to increase your chances is to network with other athletes and others in the know and get yourself known. This used to be a difficult task (especially if you lived in a little town), but has been made much easier with the advent of the Internet and in particular social networking.

SportsGist is a college and high school sports social network that offers a bunch of great features for future college students, parents or simply college sports fans. As a member you can upload video or photos, discuss relevant topics on the forum, write a blog, make contact with other athletes and much more. The site also offers tips and tools for College Recruiting including information for parents.

The site makes it very easy to complete a detailed profile that contains all of the relevant information that a coach is looking for when recruiting. This will help to promote yourself and hopefully get you noticed by a college recruiter. It also pays to contact schools you are interested in and include a College recruiting video with your letter of interest. If you are interested in high school and college sports, want to watch High school sports live or just want to network with other athletes I would recommend visiting their website

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Scott Strange Wins Manor Wales Open

IF the 2008 Celtic Manor Wales Open is looked back upon as the “Strange Open”, it will be because of one man’s complete dominance rather than any odd golfing goings-on.

Scott Strange left the rest of the field trailing in his wake from the very first day to claim his maiden European Tour victory, repelling a spirited challenge by former winner Robert Karlsson with a superb bogey-free round of 64.

At 22-under-par, Strange broke Ian Poulter’s record total for the tournament on the Wentwood Hills course by four strokes, and joined Poulter and Paul McGinley in becoming a wire-to-wire winner at Newport.

He had felt so unwell on the 15th tee during the third round that he almost collapsed.

But if the chasing pack, which included Nick Dougherty and Ryder Cup star Darren Clarke, were banking on the Australian producing a final-round wobble, they were soon sorely disappointed.

The first of seven birdies came on the par-five second, and having produced four more by the ninth hole, he reached the turn in just 31 shots.

Strange had one hand on the trophy, but Karlsson was doing his best to wrestle it from his grasp.

The statuesque Swede emerged as the Aussie’s nearest challenger, a string of birdies closing the gap to just two shots at one point.

But when Karlsson eventually slipped up, Strange marched relentlessly on, only an understandably anxious tee shot on 18 betraying any sign of nerves.

“I had no idea Robert was chasing me until I asked my caddie what sort of lead I had on 15,” said the 31-year-old, who picks up a winner’s cheque for £300,000.

“I was seven-under for the day, so I knew someone would have had to produce something exceptional to catch me.

“I think people were expecting me to slip up a little bit, but I had nothing to prove or lose and everything to gain.

“All you can do when you’re leading a tournament is go out there and play.

“If you start thinking about other players and what they’re doing, then you’re in trouble.”

Strange confessed that the ill-effects he suffered on Saturday had not completely disappeared by the time he teed off for his final round on the brand new Ryder Cup course.

“I was still a bit dodgy this morning and wasn’t 100 per cent,” he said.

“As the day progressed, though, I got better and better.

“It was almost the perfect round of golf.

“There was a fair bit going on in my head on the final tee and I was a bit numb.

“I should have taken a few deep breaths, but pushed it into the rough.

“I calmed myself down, got it back in play and managed to finish it off.”


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