Dec 13th, 2015
Lee Westwood and Jamie Donaldson have both qualified for the 145th Open at Royal Troon next year.
Lee Westwood and Jamie Donaldson have both qualified for the 145th Open at Royal Troon next year.
Royal Troon first hosted The Open in 1923, and the great event will return to the famed links course in South Ayrshire a century on from that first staging. In 2023 Royal Troon will be staging the event for the tenth time, the last time being 2016 when Henrik Stenson prevailed in a mighty battle with Phil Mickelson.
Erik van Rooyen celebrated his 30th birthday most spectacularly at the WGC-Mexico Championship as the South African tied the course record at Chapultepec Golf Club with a sizzling 62. That nine under par round moved van Rooyen to a ten under total and within a shot of Bryson DeChambeau’s lead.
It was inevitable that Patrick Reed, who is playing at the WGC event in Mexico City this week, was going to be asked about the latest comments from Bob Kostis and Brooks Koepka. Talking after Thursday’s first round he managed to dance around the question.
It was a fine victory for Adam Scott last weekend, he is a great ball striker, but I must confess I rather sighed when I saw him using a long putter to great effect once again. It was a similar feeling to that I had when Scott won the Masters back in 2013. I’m sorry, but I am with the brigade who consider these long putters cheat sticks.
Our Bryson may not quite be ripping it up on the golf course but word has got to us that he made the Sports Illustrated Top 50 Most Fit Athletes. Quite excited to learn who had made this Top 50 ( 25 men and 25 women) we were somewhat disappointed to find the definition of ‘fit’ not quite matching GolfPunk’s.
According to Rory McIlroy, he is approaching 2020 with a new mindset, one in which he plans to play carefree golf. But what exactly does ‘carefree’ mean in terms of playing the game? Consulting the dictionary carefree is an adjective meaning free from anxiety or responsibility. Checking the thesaurus, I happen to have to hand synonyms for carefree include ‘breezy’ ‘cheerful’ ‘jaunty’ ‘happy go lucky’.
Berkhamsted Golf Club has decided to allow both sexes to compete in the Berkhamsted Trophy, a long-standing top men’s amateur in the UK. This is a world-first for elite amateur golf and has the backing of the R&A and England Golf. The event which is entering its 61st year – has transformed from being a men-only tournament, into one which invites both sexes to compete for the same prize.
I didn’t think I would hear myself say this, but I feel sorry for Patrick Reed. Don’t get me wrong the guy has handled the whole affair badly and he clearly was borderline cheating at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas last December. However, due to the Tour’s insistence that the matter has been dealt with it has basically thrown the American to the lions, who in this case are the media and the golfing public.
Tiger Woods will open his account for 2020 and quest for his record breaking 83rd tour title at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines from 23rd to 26th January. Woods last seen leading Team USA to victory at the Presidents Cup will then head to the Genesis Open at the Riviera Country Club in mid-February.
With all due respect to Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods et al we think the Golf Writers Association of America (“GWAA”) were spot on in voting for Brooks Koepka as Player of the Year for 2019. Koepka’s performance at the four majors was undeniable impressive – to win one, finish second in two and tie fourth in the other is quite some feat.
Tommy “Two Gloves” Gainey was arrested as part of a prostitution sting in Central Florida. Gainey has been a pro golfer since 1997 and joined the PGA Tour in 2008, where he became famous for wearing gloves on both hands when playing.
To say that Patrick Reed is not one of the most popular players on tour would be somewhat of an understatement. However, he has done little for his stock in trade with his blatant breaking of the rules at the Hero World Challenge. Some would say he is very lucky to get away with just a two-stroke penalty.
Puma Golf’s rolled out its new “Saltwater Collection” at the Hero World Challenge at the Albany Golf Course in the Bahamas this week. In the collection is the, rather tongue in cheek, Slow Play Golf Polo, which sports lovable turtles holding clubs and flagsticks in its design. Gary Woodland from the Puma fold was happy to wear the shirt but one Bryson DeChambeau, who can be seen on the website wearing the new creation, was not so keen to take to the course in it.
GolfPunk send it condolences and prayers to Tom Watson and his family on the sad passing of Hilary Watson just before midnight on Thanksgiving Eve. Hilary, who Tom described as ‘my hero’ had been battling pancreatic cancer for two years.
Sergio García will play in next year’s Saudi International despite trying to trash a number of their greens when playing the event in February of this year. The Spaniard was disqualified after his extraordinary behaviour but it seems that there was a further sanction from tour who have insisted he plays at the event in 2020 without an appearance fee. call that a sanction? We are not impressed.
For the first time since 1955 there will be no live coverage of any golf on the BBC in 2020. The BBC has lost their rights to show any live coverage of the Augusta event which means that the UK pay TV Channel Sky is now the only place to watch live coverage of the majors. This is the end game for millions of golf fans who have seen the free to air coverage of their favourite sport fade and die in the hands of the BBC over the past decade.
In the final Hero Challenge of the year South African Erik van Rooyen defeated former Masters Champion Danny Willett. You know the Hero Challenge, it’s the one where 6 top pros compete at target golf, hitting to a floating green out in an expanse of water. The closer to the flag you are the more points you score, with the closest ring being 50 points the next 25, well you get the gist.
Derek The Donkey, GolfPunk's grumpy horse-envier once again delivers his 'Joke of the Week'. As you know he likes nothing better than a proper good laugh as long as it's at someone else's expense...
It’s been a while since this fine course has featured a major event and it’s been even longer since GolfPunk played it. If we recall correctly you head south out of Dublin on the M9 and you can’t miss it – well you can as its in middle of nowhere, if we recall.
So it's Halloween and we scratched our heads to come up with an appropriate article to put out there before all those candy fuelled little darlings start pounding on your door. So we went searching back for some of our favourite 'trick' shots and then found the best shots of the year as your 'treat' for tuning in. Contrived we hear you say - it's a fair cop!
Eddie Pepperell must have mixed memories of Portugal Masters after missing the cut and losing his card in 2016. However, this year he appears to have found an innovative way to motivate himself, wagering Martin Kaymer about appearing on the Television Show First Dates.
Englishman Josh Hill entered the record books becoming the youngest player ever to win an Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) event with his two-stroke triumph in the Al Ain Open on the Mena Tour. But sadly, as an amateur he couldn’t take home his £10,000 prize money.
Jason Day gets in private jet, hot foots it from CJ Cup in China where he was 31st and then beats Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and home favourite Hideki Matsuyama to the spoils taking home $210,000 of the $350,000 pot. Happy Days then (do you see what we did there?)! Well perhaps for Jason but not really for golf as the inaugural 'The Challenge: Japan Skins' lived up to our pretty low expectations.
Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Hideki Matsuyama will go head to head in a globally televised skins game, the first in a series of annual competitions staged by GOLFTV. "The Challenge: Japan Skins" will take place on the 21st October ahead of the PGA Tour's Zozo Championship at Accordia Golf Narashino C.C. in Chiba, Japan, and we will not be watching.
Take one bike, one set of clubs, 14 different Open venues and one complete nutter and you have the ‘The Great British Open Challenge’. London-based PGA professional, Luke Willett, he with a famous golfing namesake, is to pedal his way between all the Open venues playing 18 holes at each and cycling with his clubs on his back!
Cobra Golf today introduced its next generation of KING Forged TEC Irons, featuring a traditional muscle-back shape with a hollow design for softer feel and improved power preferred available in a variable or ONE Length set make-up.
A year after finishing tied for second in the Hero Women’s Indian Open, Christine Wolf enjoyed a much happier experience at DLF Golf and Country Club as she claimed her first Ladies European Tour title. The 30-year-old Austrian, who had led by three going into the 18th hole 12 months ago before a nightmare double-bogey wrecked her chances, was able to take care of unfinished business.
Jon Rahm successfully defended a title for the first time in his career as he stormed to a five-stroke victory at the Mutuactivos Open de España. The 24-year-old secured his fifth European Tour title in just his 39th start, becoming the fastest Spaniard to reach five victories surpassing the late, great Seve Ballesteros who reached that milestone on his 49th appearance.
Australia’s Whitney Hillier carded a one-under round of 71 to claim a one-shot lead at the halfway stage of the Hero Women’s Indian Open. She leads by a single shot from Norway’s Marianne Skarpnord with Linda Wessberg of Sweden and Meg MacLaren of England a further shot back.
The large crowds at the Club de Campo Villa de Madrid were delighted as Spanish players took command of the Open de Espana. Adria Arnaus and Rafael Cabrera Bello hold the halfway lead on eleven under par with Samuel Del Val one shot back and world number five and defending champion, Jon Rahm, sitting menacingly two back on nine under.
Christine Wolf shot an excellent five-under-par 67 in the third round of the Hero Women’s Indian Open to take a one stroke lead into the final round at DLF Golf and Country Club in Gurugram. The 30-year-old Austrian will be determined to make amends for last year when she dumped her third shot into the water at the 18th to take a double bogey and lose the event by two shots.
Only a fortnight after playing her part in Europe’s Solheim Cup victory at Gleneagles, Carlota Ciganda claimed the Estrella Damm Mediterranean Ladies Open at Terramar Golf Club in Sitges, Spain to add another unforgettable moment to her remarkable career.
Laura Fuenfstueck of Germany shot a four under 67 to keep the lead but is being hunted down by home favourite Carlota Ciganda who is just two shots back going into the final round of the Estrella Damm Mediterranean Ladies Open at Golf Club Terramar, near Barcelona.
Germany’s Laura Fuenfstueck produced back to back rounds of 68 to lead by three shots at the halfway stage of the Estrella Damm Mediterranean Ladies Open in Sitges, near Barcelona. The 24-year-old from Langen was out of the traps quickly, racking up four birdies in her first 12 holes and made just the one bogey, on the par-4 14th, at Terramar Golf Club.
Nelly Korda shot a four-under 67 to win the Lacoste Ladies Open to take her first European Title. Blustery conditions made it challenging at Golf du Medoc and despite being in a final round containing two local favourites, Korda managed to hold off Joanna Klattern and Céline Boutier for her maiden win on this side of the pond.
France’s Joanna Klatten made a strong push at the Lacoste Ladies Open de France with third round six-under-par 65 at Golf du Medoc Resort bringing her within one of World Number one Nelly Korda, setting up for an exciting final round.
World number ten Nelly Korda lived up to her favourite billing shooting a second round seven-under-par 64 to take a six-stroke lead into the weekend on 10-under-par at the Lacoste Ladies Open de France at Golf du Medoc, near Bordeaux.
The teams were introduced, the crowds were bedecked in the colours of the teams and Sharleen Spiteri and Texas hit the stage to liven up proceedings. First points in the fashion stakes probably went to Europe with their mid length coats and Solheim Cup tartan scarves winning it out over the the not quite so flattering short jackets of Team USA. A real spectacle indeed and here are some of the best images.
Paul Casey has moves up to 14th in the world following his victory at the European Open in Hamburg. The Englishman shot a bogey free 66 that took him to 14 under and squeezed out Scotland’s Robert Macintyre, Austria’s Matthias Schwab and home hope Bernd Ritthammer by one-stroke.
Something for the weekend? Ooh suit you!
Something for the weekend? Ooh, suit you!
The Solheim Cup is just three weeks away and Team USA captain, Juli Inkster, used her picks to add some experience to her rookie Solheim Cup line up last night. This will be Stacy Lewis’ fifth Solheim Cup and Morgan Pressel’s sixth.
World number one, Jin Young Ko, walked arm in arm up to the 18th green at the CP Women’s Open yesterday with defending champion and local girl Brooke Henderson, as she cruised to a five shot lead over her nearest rival, Denmark’s Nicole Broch Larsen, to confirm that she is in her class of her own on the LPGA Tour this year.
Something for the weekend? Ooh suit you!
Local favourite Stephanie Meadow will take a four shot lead into the final round of the ISPS HANDA World Invitational. The 27-year-old from Jordanstown, Northern Ireland shot a six under par 67 to sit on ten under for the event, four clear of England’s Eleanor Givens. In the men’s event, Damien Perrier of France and Todd Clement of England lead the field by a single shot following another long day with rain delays at Galgorm Castle.
Scotland’s Craig Ross and England’s Eleanor Givens are the first round leaders lead in the The ISPS HANDA World Invitational, both carding an impressive 6 under par. Ross shot an impressive birdie free round of 64 Massereene Golf Club while Givens had seven birdies and one solitary bogey in carding a 67 at Galgorm Castle Golf Club.
It has rather flown under the radar but yesterday the ISPS HANDA World Invitational event for both men and women teed of at Galgorm Castle Golf Club and Massereene Golf Club. A first for golf in Europe as women will play alongside (sort of) the men and will play for the same money.
TaylorMade are on a roll, of that there can be little doubt and when the TP Patina Putter collection drops you can be sure it will cause more than a little stir. The marketing bumpf is all well and good, but well, just look at them.
The stuff that's floated our boats and scrunched our undies this week...
As we start the end of season scramble, which is the Fedex Cup playoff, starting first at Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City, the problem of slow play rears its ugly head once again. Both Rory and Brooks were asked in yesterday’s interviews about the problem and neither of them held back their criticism and the need for the governing bodies to take action.
Well we have run out of majors but Tiger will still be coming out to play in August as the FedEx Cup Playoffs commence this week in Jersey City, with The Northern Trust. It’s all change with the play-offs and we had to read it a few times before we sussed it out. So here’s how it will work..
She is only 20, has never played a major championship or even played outside Japan until this week and now Hinako Shibuno finds herself leading the Women’s British Open at Woburn. She takes a two-shot lead into the Sunday but there is plenty of talent queuing up behind her should she slip up on the final day.
It was all getting quite crowded at the top of the leaderboard on day two at the AIG Women’s British Open at Woburn on Friday until the overnight leader, Ashleigh Buhai, who was out late in the day, suddenly put her foot on the accelerator to open up daylight between her and the field.
The AIG Women’s British Open is now set to follow Woburn Golf Club with back to back regal courses with Royal Troon added to the Championship roster for 2020 and Royal Porthcawl confirmed for 2021. It seems therefore, that that we are set for some quality golf on iconic courses now that The R&A has taken over the women's home Championship.
What's floated our golf boat and upset us at day two of the AIG Women’s British Open. The GolfPunk team took to the fairways, well ok the path bits down the sides, to see what was good and bad on the Marquess course at Woburn Golf Club.
Defending Women’s British Open champion Georgia Hall is set to tee off at 12.16 on Thursday alongside Brooke Henderson of Canada and Japan’s Mamiko Higa and according to her she is “actually very excited. I don't feel any pressure. It’s really nice for me to be home because I've been in the US the whole year.”
We thought we’d seen it all but this really takes the biscuit – Mini golf in a cathedral! Rochester Cathedral have set up a nine-hole mini-golf course for the summer. The course has been paid for by the Rochester Bridge Trust and so the course features a lot of, err bridges.
One of golf´s great masterpieces, severe, fascinating, beautiful and without weakness...... Continuing the theme of everything Ireland, GolfPunk looks back to one of its favourite courses south of the border, Waterville Golf Club - You Little Beauty!
The men’s majors are over and so attention turns to the women, or ladies as they were referred to when I was growing up. We have a double header with the Evian Championship in France this week followed straight away by the Women's British Open. And we thought the men were compressing their majors too much!
They needed it to be tough out there if they were going to challenge Shane Lowry but in the end, it was too tough and the conditions actually played in to the hands of the big man. For a man who grew up playing links golf up and down Ireland he was always going to be one of best equipped if the really high winds came.
The fairy tale has slowly unwound. Local boy, Darren Clarke, who led the field off on Thursday in the 148th Open Championship, took seven at the last to miss the cut. Rory McIlroy, who famously shot 61 around Royal Portrush at the age of 16, shot 65, equalling best score of the day, but agonisingly missed the cut by one. And our man, Gmac, held firm just making it through on the cut line, nine back from the leader.
It’s etiquette right? You hit the ball in the direction of another person on a golf course, you shout ‘fore’. It instilled in you from almost your first shot on a golf course, be you ten year’s old or eighty. However, it seems for some professionals that once they have reached the lofty heights of the tour this unwritten rule no longer applies to them.
There have been many incredible Open debuts, here is our Top 10...
There have been many an odd occurence at the oldest of all the majors but these are our pick of the top ten weirdest Open Championship moments.
Why is the golf now only on Sky TV in the UK with the BBC set to produce, if last year is anything to go by, a set of very ordinary highlights programmes? Who is to blame - Sky, the BBC, the politicians, the R&A or perhaps even Brexit?
Hughie's is the 416 yards, par 4 first hole on the Royal Portrush course. There is out of bounds on both sides of the hole with most golfers most concerned with that on the right. However, as there are bunkers on the right and left of the fairway at 262 yards and 291 yards respectively, most pros will go with an iron.
Who will win the Open? Vote now for your pick of the Top 20, as per the bookies, or do you think it will be more of an outsider who takes the Claret Jug on the shores of Northern Ireland?
Darren Clarke will hit the opening tee shot at The 148th Open, while fellow local favourite Rory McIlroy is paired with US Open champion Gary Woodland for the opening two rounds at Royal Portrush, which we cannot wait to see!
Each year the winner of The Open receives the famous claret jug which he must return before the following year’s event. But what is the history behind this iconic trophy?
GolfPunk fave Georgia Hall (no less!!) and nine of the past ten Champions will compete at the Women’s British Open for a 40% larger prize fund of $4.5m (circa £3.6m at time of writing) in recognition of the importance of the Championship and women’s golf according to the R&A.
The Open is looming up on the horizon so come and test your knowledge of all things Openey with the GolfPunk Open Golf Quiz 2019. It's got something for everyone who err like quizes.
Despite no mortal being able to move it on their own the answer is the boulder. As Tiger Woods found out to his benefit at the 1999 Phoenix Open when a friendly rules official suggested it was a loose impediment.
Summer is finally upon us the fairways are firming up, the shorts are out so all you need is a nice pair of comfy shoes. PUMA is releasing their latest iterations of their iconic PUMA Suede shoe and we must say they do look rather lush!
So Muirfield or to give its proper title, The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, has formally invited women to join the club as members for the first time since voting to change the club’s rules in 2017.
Derek The Donkey, GolfPunk's grumpy horse-envier delivers his 'Joke of the Week'. He likes nothing better than a proper good laugh as long as it's at someone else's expense...
The weather has been rubbish so far this year (on both sides of the pond it seems) and it’s got the team dreaming of sunnier climbs. The Maldives is always a luxurious option (especially if you're feeling flush), but there was never a need to take the wrenches….UNTIL NOW!
Justin Rose shot a third round 68 to close the gap on leader Gary Woodland to just one shot, with the field a further three shots back. Looming ominously in the pair’s rear-view mirror is one Brooks Koepka who shot a bogey free round of 68 to continue his slow, but continuous, move up the leaderboard.
Once upon a time what golfers wore on the course was not something that was talked about much. This might have something to do with the fact that they wore a standardised uniform of shirt, jumper of varying style and slacks. Oh, and of course the obligatory golf shoe which usually looked like something your grandad thought was cutting edge.
America’s Gary Woodland shot a 65 to take the lead in the US Open and join Justin Rose and Tiger Woods in the record books with the joint lowest score in a US Open at Pebble Beach. He leads England’s Justin Rose, who added a round of 70 to his own 65, by two shots as they go into the weekend.
Jordan Spieth is very much making the headlines at Pebble Beach. An eventful second round sees him 1 under par overall after making seven birdies and five bogeys and apparently learning a lesson from Thursday by acknowledging that he is the one making the shots!
England’s Justin Rose birdied the final three holes of his round to post a six under par 65 and lead the U.S. Open by one shot. One of GolfPunk’s tips, Ricky Fowler, sits in second place alongside his fellow countrymen, Xander Schauffele and Aaron Wise, and South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen. Rose’s round is the joint lowest ever shot at Pebble Beach in an U.S. Open.
Jordan Spieth was having a decent round yesterday. Level par for the first seven holes and all was well with the world, until the par four 8th. On a hole that requires precision and tidy positioning off the tee, Speith’s tee shot hit the fairway but then rolled too far, ran out of runway and dropped over the cliff edge.
'Yo the man!', 'In the hole!' and other suitable golf course cries! It's US Open time. Pebble Beach is looking as scary as ever. Who can hold those tiny greens? Who knows. Certainly not us - well maybe we do - see our new algorithm. What do we know, the best of us got 14/18 in the GolfPunk US Open quiz Part 2. Which is not great considering we set the questions... Let's see how you can do!
The US Open at Pebble Beach is almost upon us! Tiger is back in the mix, Brooks is looking for three in a row and Phil is still searching for that elusive US Open. Here's our Quiz testing your knowledge of all things US errrm, Openish! Come and have a go if you think you're smart enough.
The US open is returning to Pebble Beach with its magnificent views, tiny greens and changeable conditions. All factors that are taxing The Spiv’s brain matter as he sips on his port and peruses the field. But this year its all different as GolfPunk has a new algorithm and its going to make us all rich (necessary caveats and waivers apply of course).
It was a great day for Northern Ireland at the final day of Canadian Open from Hamilton Golf and Country Club. Rory McIlroy shot an incredible nine under 61 to take the title by 7 shots and Graeme McDowell finished in the top ten and qualified for The Open.
GolfPunk will be donning their tartan trews on the opening day of the Solheim Cup at Gleneagle for #TartanFriday. Catriona Matthew has been working with Abacus Sportswear of Sweden to produce the official Solheim Cup tartan for Team Europe and the results are as they say north of the border ‘pure tidy’.
Rory McIlroy shot a six under 64 in the third round of the Canadian Open to move into a share of the lead with the US’s Matt Kuchar and Webb Simpson. McIlroy’s countryman Graeme McDowell slipped back slightly but sits in joint ninth on eight under – Come on Gmac!
Graeme McDowell shot a second round 67 at the Canadian Open to sit on eight under, four off the halfway lead which is held by Matt Kuchar and Scott Brown. Gmac still work to do if he is to grab one of the three spots available for The Open but he is well placed come the weekend.
Keegan Bradley leads, some other folk are in second, third etc., including Shane Lowry of Ireland, but all we care about is how Graeme McDowell is doing. Gmac must be at The Open in July and we are cheering him all the way.
The Open is coming back to Northern Ireland after a break of 68 years. When Max Faulkner, one of the most flamboyant golfers of his generation, won the Open Championship in 1951 at Royal Portrush it would be 18 years until a Brit, Tony Jacklin in 1969, was to do so again.
The fourteen qualifiers from yesterday’s European U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying consisted of no fewer than ten different nationalities. South African Dean Burmester led the list of qualifiers with a total of 128, sixteen under par and four shots clear.
Derek The Donkey, GolfPunk's grumpy horse-envier is back with 'Joke of the Week'. He likes nothing better than a proper good laugh as long as it's at someone else's expense...
To hit a drive that bounces on the fairway and runs in to a divot is bad enough but if it runs in to an old pitch mark that really tries one’s patience. You curse your luck and play the ball as best you can – right? Not the Kooch who decided to try and invent a whole new sub rule!
Matt Wallace is riding high, particularly after his strong performance at the USPGA at Bethpage Black. However, his pal and GolfPunk favourite, Eddie Pepperell, decided to bring him down to ground in this hilarious European Tour video.
GolfPunk's resident tipster, Nick Fleming, picked 2nd place Joel Dahmen as an each way bet at Wells Fargo Championship at the weekend and sadly missed out on Jorge Campillo, who down as a winner, faded to finish third as Mikko Korhonen came through to see off France’s Benjamin Hebert at the first play-off hole.
Twenty Chinese golfers made the cut for the weekend of the Volvo China Open but it was an inhabitant of the 116th biggest country in the world, by population, who lifted the spoils at the Genzon Golf Club in Shenzhen. FInland’s Mikko Korhonen clinched his second European Tour title seeing off France’s Benjamin Hebert at the first play-off hole.
In his first outing since The Masters, Rory McIlroy carded an opening five under par 66 to share the lead of the Wells Fargo International from Quail Hollow. The Northern Irishman shares the lead with America’s Joel Dahmen, one of GolfPunk’s each-way tips for the event.