Good Tuesday morning, golf fans, as attention turns towards the RSM Classic.
Keely Levins for Golf Digest…”Korda secured her eighth LPGA title. She’s projected to regain her spot as No. 1 in the world rankings.”
Evin Priest for Golf Digest…“In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald in his native Australia, Smith called for LIV golfers to be able to tee it up in the four majors in 2023.”
Adam Woodard for Golfweek…“The field for the 2022 PNC Championship keeps getting better and better.”
Cameron Morfit for PGATour.com…”Tadd Fujikawa will not sweat making the cut at The RSM Classic at Sea Island this week, and while others worry about staying out of the rough at the last official PGA TOUR event of 2022, Fujikawa will preach staying out of the kitchen.”
PGATour.com’s Sean Martin…”After missing the cut in the Korn Ferry Tour’s Nashville stop last year – his fourth missed cut in five starts – Thompson played a local par-3 course with a friend and started tinkering with his putting grip. Admittedly a creature of habit, the Korn Ferry Tour rookie was reluctant to depart from a traditional grip. But, as they say, desperate times call for desperate measures. Thompson decided to try the cross-handed, or left-hand-low, style of putting.”
James Corrigan for the Telegraph…”Greg Norman appeared at the Adelaide Oval to declare that the city’s Grange course will host the country’s first LIV event and while the league’s CEO stated his well-trailed belief that the likes of Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy should be thankful that the start-up Tour has forced the PGA Tour to increase its incentives for the big names, in the background a vitriolic row in the corridors of power was unfolding.”
PGATour.com’s Sean Martin…”We’re quick to ascribe a player’s Sunday struggles to a deficit in his mental game, an inability to handle the pressure of a tournament’s final holes. Finau possesses preternatural physical gifts, so it was especially easy to blame his five-year winless drought on an intangible characteristic.”
Iain Carter for the BBC…”Greg Norman must quit as commissioner of the breakaway LIV Tour to end the “stalemate” in golf’s acrimonious civil war, says Rory McIlroy.”
WOTW: Tommy Fleetwood’s Titanium TAG Heuer Connected Golf Edition Smartwatch
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Tommy Fleetwood won his sixth DP World Tour event in South Africa at the Nedbank Golf Challenge. It is the same event that Fleetwood won in 2019 as well. Tommy held the large crystal trophy in the air while wearing his TAG Heuer Connected Golf Edition smartwatch.
Name: TAG Heuer Connected Golf Edition
Date: 2020 – Present
Bezel: Black Ceramic
Dial: AMOLED Display
Movement: Calibre E4, Cortex A53 CPU
Power Reserve: ~24 Hours
Glass: Sapphire Crystal
Waterproof: 50 Meters
Bracelet: White Rubber Strap
Price: $2,650 (~$2,000)
TAG Heuer was founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer in Switzerland. They are more known for making luxury mechanical watches without batteries. The Connected series is a line of smartwatches that run on Google’s WearOS software. I don’t know the exact release date of the Golf Edition, but it has been around since at least 2020. TAG’s Connected line has gone through a few special editions including a collaboration with Porsche and Nintendo’s Mario.
TAG Heuer’s Connected Golf Edition is probably the most expensive golf watch on the market, but the details make you appreciate that extra cost. The case is on the larger side at 45mm, but I got to review this watch a few years ago and it doesn’t wear near as large as that number. The case is made from Titanium and finished with sandblasted DLC finish. The caseback features sensors for monitoring heart rate and other body vitals. On the right side of the case is a crown and 2 pushers that are used to navigate the menu and apps. The case is sealed and offers 50 meters of water resistance for casual swimming and getting caught in the rain on the course. On top of the case is a fixed bezel that is made from black ceramic for scratch resistance. It has an 18 hole scaled etched in it and is used with the golf app to keep track of what hole you are on. A touch screen AMOLED display is the dial it has a maximum resolution of 454×454 pixels (326ppi).
Inside the the case is the digital Calibre E4 “movement” that controls the Golf Edition watch. The 4 core ARM Cortex A53 CPU runs at 1.7GHz and on 64bit architecture. The Cortex-A53 is built for high efficiency and features four cores, each with an L1 memory system and a single shared L2 cache. Battery life on the Golf Edition is around 24 hours from the 440 mAh internal battery. The watch itself has bothWifi and Bluetooth 5.0 to connect to the internet and your phone. The Golf Edition can look like a more traditional watch with the TAG Heuer inspired watch face designs built in. The golf software has 40,000 courses loaded into the memory and gives distances through GPS. The watch connects to an app on your iOS or Android phone that has a great design and interface that just feels nicer than a lot of other golf apps.
When you open the white box you will find the Golf Edition watch and 2 straps. A white and black rubber strap contains green contrast stitching and a golf ball dimple texture. It comes together with a titanium push-button folding clasp that has a sandblasted DLC finish to match the case. The strap also has a magnetic ball marker that is integrated and can even hold a spare market if you lose one. Replacing those markers isn’t cheap as they are about $90 for 3. The watch comes with a black rubber strap to blend in when wearing it off the course.
The luxury watch demand has been high for years, but it doesn’t seem to translate to smart watches. The retail price on the Connected Golf Edition is $2,650 and you can get it right off TAG Heuer’s website. If you do want to save a little money, it looks like you can get a brand new one off the secondary market for around $2,000.
Good Monday morning, golf fans, as Tony Finau notched yet another win at the Houston Open over the weekend.
Cameron Jourdan for Golfweek…”Tony Finau came into the 2022 Cadence Bank Houston Open off a missed cut last week in Mexico in his first start of the season. He said he didn’t take any time off and continued to practice to knock off rust in an effort to bounce back.”
AP report…”Tommy Fleetwood saved his best for last with a final-round 67 to come from behind and retain his title at the Nedbank Golf Challenge on Sunday as he ended a three-year winless drought.”
Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…”Andy Ogletree closed in 8-under 62 on Sunday in Cairo to win the Asian Tour’s International Series Egypt by four shots over Bernd Wiesberger.”
Associated Press report…”A year Nelly Korda would like to forget is ending with the American star in a familiar position as the No. 1 player in women’s golf.”
Brian Keogh for the Independent…”Pádraig Harrington shot the lowest 72-hole aggregate of his professional career — and broke Tom Lehman’s PGA Tour Champions 72-hole scoring record — when he closed with a six-under 65 to win the Charles Schwab Cup Championship by seven shots from Alex Cejka on 27-under in Arizona.”
Golfweek’s Eamon Lynch…”A change in LIV’s leadership won’t simply be about sidelining a polarizing figure motivated by a personal animus against the PGA Tour and viewed with disdain by many top players, including some he has caressed with MBS’s cash. Swapping out the Shark would suggest short-term desperation more than long-term determination, perhaps even a new face-saving strategy by the Saudis. It would also represent the only move left for LIV before having to acknowledge that the fundamental problem isn’t who captains the ship.”
Brentley Romine for Golf Channel…”When Chiara Noja was 10 years old, she took a photo with Charley Hull.”
Matt Craddock for Golf Monthly…”First reported by the Twitter page Nosferatu, Paul Casey is the most recent LIV golfer to fall outside of the World’s Top 50, something which hasn’t happened to the Englishman since the 2015 Northern Trust Open.
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D Limited 70 TX
3-wood: Callaway Rogue ST Triple Diamond T (14 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D Limited 80 TX
Irons: Nike Vapor Fly Pro (3), Ping Blueprint (4-PW)
Shafts: Graphite Design Tour AD DI Hybrid 105 X (3), Nippon N.S. Pro Modus 3 Tour 120 TX
Wedges: Ping Glide 4.0 (50-S12, 56-S12), Titleist Vokey Design WedgeWorks Proto (60-T)
Shafts: Nippon N.S. Pro WV 125S Tour (50-56), Nippon N.S. Pro Modus 3 125 Wedge (60)
Putter: Ping PLD prototype
Grip: Garsen Golf Ultimate
Ball: Titleist Pro V1 Left Dot
Grips: Lamkin UTX Midsize
November brings football glory to university and professional teams across the United States of America. It also brings chances at redemption, at inauguration, and at awareness. Five tours disputed time-honored events this weekend, and five champions gave thanks for the opportunity to ply their trade this late in the year. It’s not the cauldron of the majors, nor is it the caldera of international team play, but it is challenging and difficult. Let’s take a run down events from Arizona to South Africa to Houston to Egypt to Florida. Sometimes, a handful is a good thing.
A shot worthy of winning any tournament ?#NGC2022 pic.twitter.com/iS4X09R0Ck
— DP World Tour (@DPWorldTour) November 13, 2022
PGA Tour: Tony Finau earns Houston Open win in a walk
The man who learned to win, Tony Finau, had a five-shot advantage after 36 holes in Houston. His lead shrunk to four on Saturday evening, but grew to seven after nine holes on Sunday. How do you play with an eight-shot lead? Sloppily, it turns out. Finau closed with a three-over par 38 on the inward half. It wasn’t enough to jeopardize his victory, but it certainly brought up questions about his ability to close, no matter the circumstance.
Finau’s third win of the 2022 campaign was, for 87 percent of the week, a master class. He posted 22 birdies against three bogeys, over the first 63 holes. Needing a one-under finish to reach minus twenty on the week. The back nine on Sunday was nobody’s masterpiece, but it got the job done for the 33-year old from Utah.
Finau fist pumps ?@TonyFinauGolf moves to 18-under with this birdie @HouOpenGolf. pic.twitter.com/7DVmxor2v1
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) November 13, 2022
LPGA: Nelly completes comeback from illness with win at PWC
Three storylines had our attention on Sunday in Belleair, Florida. Allisen Corpuz, on the strength of twin 65s, made a run at an inaugural, LPGA victory. Lexi Thompson sought to end a three-year victory drought, and Nelly Korda hoped to complete a comeback from an illness that had sidelined her for much of the season. Any one of those victories would have made for a compelling story.
Corpuz started off slowly on Sunday. She had seven pars on her scorecard before a bogey at eight dropped her farther back. Three birdies and another bogey on the back gave her 69 on the day and a solo third finish, the best of her career. Thompson seemingly finds a new way to un-win a tournament each week. On Sunday, consecutive bogies at 11 and 12 were sandwiched by Korda birdies at 10 and 13. That four hole stretch cost Thompson four strokes.
As for Nelly, seven birdies over the first 17 holes gave her a two-shot cushion on the final tee. Playing safely for bogey, the young Floridian earned the eighth win of her career, and first since last year’s Pelican.
Club twirl ?
Another birdie ?
Fist pump ?@NellyKorda leads by two heading into 18.
Stream the end of the @pelicanlpga now ?? https://t.co/IykL1f2Leu pic.twitter.com/H1oLuEXcsf
— LPGA (@LPGA) November 13, 2022
DP World Tour: Fairway Jesus claims first tour title since 2019 event
With three holes remaining in the Nedbank Golf Challenge, Shubhankar Sharma, Ryan Fox, and Tommy Fleetwood sat even at 11-under par. The closing holes at Gary Player Country Club are a study in H2O avoidance. Each demands a low-percentage shot over the wet stuff, and each is fraught with potential for tournament shape-shifting.
Sharma is an unproven commodity, and he was the first to falter. Bogey at 16 and 17 dropped him to nine under par, and he finished there, in solo third position. Fox has learned how to win of late, but with great length comes great potential for wayward landing. His bogey at the last dropped him out of a tie in gut-wrenching fashion, and he finished solo second at ten deep.
It was Fleetwood, aka Fairway Jesus, who held steady over the closing stretch with three boring pars. All those Ryder Cup gauntlets have steeled his nerves, at least when playing with lesser talent. Fleetwood ground out a ho-hum triumvirate of fairways and greens, and claimed his sixth tour title. His fifth also came at the Nedbank, so his appetite for the Sun City course is developing.
Asian Tour: Ogletree claims International Series Egypt at Madinaty
Andy Ogletree was one of the COVID generation of golfers, whose senior seasons and professional summers were derailed by the world pandemic. 2020 seems so long ago, but for this group, it was the worst of times. Ogletree has lived the journeyman life since leaving Georgia Tech and the college game, including Monday qualifying, world events, and the inaugural LIV event in London. This week in Egypt, Ogletree gained himself some confidence and some bankroll as he raced to a four-shot win over Austria’s Bernd Wiesberger.
Ogletree began the week with 66, then added 64 and 65 to earn a three-shot advantage through 54 holes. Plenty of golfers posted rounds in the mid-60s, but the tournament would always come down to the final group. Ogletree and Wiesberger went at it in fierce fashion, ensuring a back-nine duel. Each had one bogey and a bucket of birdies on the front nine, with Ogletree one shot better. The Austrian eagled the tenth to gain a shot back (against Ogletree’s birdie!) but the young American did not wilt. Wiesberger reduced the deficit to two at the 13th, but could not get any closer. The 16th decided matters, with Ogletree making birdie against bogey for his opponent. The walk down the final 100 yards wasn’t easy, but the winner closed with birdie to claim an inaugural major-tour win.
A victory in only his fifth start on Tour ?
Take a bow, Andy Ogletree ???????#InternationalSeriesEgypt #whereitsAT pic.twitter.com/mksJdMvWWg
— Asian Tour (@asiantourgolf) November 13, 2022
PGA Tour Champions: Harrington closes Champions season in style
Padraig Harrington had built himself quite a lead after a Saturday 62. Alex Cejka figured that he’d make the Irishman sweat a bit on Sunday. The German played his first seven holes in five-under figures, putting a bit of a crease in Harrington’s victory stroll. Prince Padraig responded with a birdie run of his own, and Cejka cooled waaaayyy off. He would not make another birdie for eleven holes, and by then the victory would be in no doubt.
Harrington’s seven-shot victory was one for the record books. He played no round higher than 66 on the week, and amassed 27 birdies and one eagle. His second bogey of the week came with 40 holes remaining, and his scorecards were flawless on Saturday and Sunday. His four-round tally of 257 shots set a Champions Tour record. With his victory, the Irishman threw a scare into Steven Alker, in the season-long race for the Charles Schwab Cup. In the end, Harrington finished in second place, as Alker clinched a championship of his own.
Another birdie for @padraig_h to get to 25-under ?
He's now just two away from closing in on the 72-hole scoring record of 27-under. pic.twitter.com/cT55WeGDxy
— PGA TOUR Champions (@ChampionsTour) November 13, 2022
Johannes Veerman what’s in the bag accurate as of the Cadence Bank Houston Open. More photos from the event here….
Gary Woodland what’s in the bag accurate as of the Cadence Bank Houston Open. More photos from the event here….
Driver: Ping G425 LST (9 degrees @7) Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D Limited 70 TX 3-wood: Callaway Rogue ST Triple Diamond…
Driver: Titleist TSi3 (10 degrees) Shaft: Project X HZRDUS Smoke Black 70 6.5 TX 3-wood: Titleist TS3 (16.5 degrees) Shaft:…
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