Weekend Preview

TigerWoods

Tiger Woods in action for the first time in 2015

PGA TOUR
Waste Management Phoenix Open
Dates: Jan. 29-Feb. 1
Venue: TPC Scottsdale (Stadium Course), Scottsdale, Ariz.

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 3-7 p.m. (Live) / 8-10 p.m. (Replay)
Friday 3-7 p.m. (Live) / 10 p.m.-2 a.m. (Replay)
Saturday 1-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 7-11:30 p.m. (Replay) / 11:30-4 a.m. (Replay)
Sunday 1-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 7-11:30 p.m. (Replay) / 11:30-4 a.m. (Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

Woods returns to Scottsdale for the first time since 2001: Tiger Woods makes his first start of 2015 this week, returning to TPC Scottsdale for the first time in competition since 2001.

Headlining the field: Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson, Matt Kuchar, Zach Johnson, Keegan Bradley, Erik Compton and Robert Allenby.

mciloryace

Rory McIlory in action on the European Tour this week

EUROPEAN TOUR
Omega Dubai Desert Classic
Dates: Jan. 29-Feb. 1
Venue: Emirates Golf Club (Majlis Course), Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 1-4 a.m. / 5:30-8:30 a.m. (Live)
Friday 1-4 a.m. / 5:30-8:30 a.m. (Live) / 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (Replay)
Saturday 4-8 a.m. (Live) / 9:30 a.m.-Noon (Replay)
Sunday 4-8 a.m. (Live) / 9:30-Noon (Replay)

Headlining the field: Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Sergio Garcia, Martin Kaymer, Ernie Els, Victor Dubuisson, Graeme McDowell, Branden Grace, Louis Oosthuizen and Peter Uihlein.

lydiako

Lydia Ko in action this week

LPGA TOUR
Coates Golf Championship
Dates: Jan. 28-31
Venue: Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club, Ocala, Fla.

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Wednesday 2-5 p.m. (Live)
Thursday 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (Live)
Friday 8-10 p.m. (Tape delay) / 3-5 p.m. (Live streaming on Golf Live Extra)
Saturday 3-5 p.m. (Live)

Headlining the field: Michelle Wie, Lydia Ko, Stacy Lewis, Inbee Park, Lexi Thompson, Anna Nordqvist, Ai Miyazato, Azahara Munoz, So Yeon Ryu, Paula Creamer and Cheyenne Woods.

Weekend Wrap

haasblastHumana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation
Dates: Jan. 22-25
Venue: Palmer Private Course, PGA West; Nicklaus Private Course, PGA West; La Quinta Country Club (La Quinta, Calif.)

Bill Haas returned to play for the first time this year, following recovering from a broken wrist. Obviously his time off and recovery went well, as Haas captured his first PGA Tour victory since 2013. The Humana Challenge is typically a very low scoring event, one such low score was the 59 shot by David Duval many years ago. This year was no different. Haas’s winning scores: 67-63-69-67. Ryan Palmer carded the low score of the event with a second round 61.

Haas’s final round 67 was enough to hold off contenders Matt Kuchar, Charley Hoffman, Brendan Steele, Steve Wheatcroft and Sung Joon Park.
Video highlights:

miguelangeljimenezCHAMPIONS TOUR
Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai
Dates: Jan. 23-25
Venue: Hualalai Resort Golf Club, Ka’upulehu-Kona, Hawaii

The Champions Tour opened its season in lovely Hualalai Resort, Ka’upulehu-Kona, Hawaii. Tough duty without a doubt. The first winner on the 50 and over circuit is golf’s most interesting man, Miguel Angel Jimenez.

Jimenez caught fire on the back nine Sunday, with six birdies. Jimenez’s 6-under round of 66 was enough to edge Mark O’Meara by one stroke.

The victory for Jimenez marks his second on the Champions Tour in three starts.

Weekend Preview

Patrick Reed in the field this week

Patrick Reed in the field this week

Professional golf is gaining momentum in 2015 with three major tours in action this week, and many of golf’s biggest stars like Phil Mickelson, Justin Rose, and Sergio Garcia

PGA TOUR
Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation
Dates: Jan. 22-25
Venue: Palmer Private Course, PGA West; Nicklaus Private Course, PGA West; La Quinta Country Club (La Quinta, Calif.)

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 3-7 p.m. (Live) / 7:30-11:30 p.m. (Replay)
Friday 3-7 p.m. (Live) / 10:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Replay)
Saturday 3-7 p.m. (Live) / 10:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Replay)
Sunday 3-7 p.m. (Live) / 11 p.m.-3 a.m. (Replay)

Headlining the field: Phil Mickelson, Patrick Reed, Keegan Bradley, Billy Horschel, Matt Kuchar, Zach Johnson, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker, Jason Dufner and Bill Haas.

CHAMPIONS TOUR
Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai
Dates: Jan. 23-25
Venue: Hualalai Resort Golf Club, Ka’upulehu-Kona, Hawaii

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Friday 7:30-10:30 p.m. (Live) / 2:30-4:30 a.m. (Saturday replay)
Saturday 7:30-10:30 p.m. (Live) / 3-6 a.m. (Sunday replay)
Sunday 7-10 p.m. (Live) / 4-6 a.m. (Monday deplay)

Headlining the field: Bernhard Langer, Fred Couples, Tom Watson, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Davis Love III, Colin Montgomerie, Kenny Perry, Corey Pavin, Tom Lehman and Peter Jacobsen.

EUROPEAN TOUR
Commercial Bank Qatar Masters
Dates: Jan. 21-24
Venue: Doha Golf Club, Doha, Qatar

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Wednesday 1:30-4:30 a.m., 6 -8:30 a.m. (Live)
Thursday 1:30-4:30 a.m., 6-8:30 a.m. (Live)
Friday 4:30-8:30 a.m. (Live)
Saturday 4:30-8:30 a.m. (Live) / 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. (Replay)

Headlining the field: Henrik Stenson, Justin Rose, Sergio Garcia, Ernie Els, Charl Schwartzel, Stephen Gallacher, Matteo Manassero, Thorbjorn Olesen, Mikko Ilonen and Peter Uihlein.

Weekend Wrap

Jimmy WalkerPGA TOUR
Sony Open in Hawaii
Dates: Jan. 15-18
Venue: Waialae Country Club, Honolulu, Hawaii

The Sony Open is the first full field event on the PGA Tour for calendar year 2015, and a strong field this year included the likes of Jason Day, Zach Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Webb Simpson, and Luke Donald.

One other very strong player in the field was Jimmy Walker.  Walker walked to a smooth nine stroke victory, following a stellar 7-under 63 in the final round.  The previous round was even better, an 8-under 62.  Walker was inspired to close out the tournament after watching Martin Kaymer blow a 10-shot lead in the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.

EUROPEAN TOUR

Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship
Dates: Jan. 15-18
Venue: Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

As mentioned in the PGA Tour wrap-up, U.S. Open champion Martin Kaymer looked to be on his way to collecting the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship with his 10-stroke lead in the final round.  As is evidenced in the Ryder Cup, the European Tour is full of amazing players who are capable of going low at any point in time.

Combined with a poor showing by Kaymer in his final round 75, Gary Stal’s bogey-free final round 65 overtook Kaymer and beat him by two shots. The HSBC marks the first European Tour victory for the 374th ranked golfer in the world, Stal.

Shot of the Week: McIlory Ace in Abu Dhabi

mciloryaceThough the week in professional golf has barely gotten underway, we have a winner for the shot of the week. On the European Tour Rory McIlory is making his first start of 2015. In Abu Dhabi yesterday at the HSBC Golf Championship, McIlory carded his first professional hole-in-one.

Hole: Par-3 15th
Course: Abu Dhabi Golf Club, United Arab Emirates
Club: 9-iron
Yardage: 177 yards

Yes that’s a 177 yard NINE IRON.

In the previous round Miguel Angel Jimenez aced the same hole!

Weekend Preview

Hold The FInish

PGA TOUR
Sony Open in Hawaii
Dates: Jan. 15-18
Venue: Waialae Country Club, Honolulu, Hawaii

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 7-10:30 p.m. (Live) / 11 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Replay)
Friday 7-10:30 p.m. (Live) / 11 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Replay)
Saturday 7-10:30 p.m. (Live) / 11 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Replay)
Sunday 6-8 p.m. (Live) / 9 p.m.-1 a.m. (Replay)

Tournament Airtimes On NBC (Eastern):
Sunday 4-6 p.m. (Live)

Headlining the field: Jason Day, Jimmy Walker, Zach Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Hideki Matsuyama, Webb Simpson, Sang-Moon Bae, Luke Donald, Russell Henley and Chris Kirk.

rorymciloryEUROPEAN TOUR
Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship
Dates: Jan. 15-18
Venue: Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 12:30-3:30 a.m., 5-8 a.m. (Live) / Noon-5:30 p.m. (Replay)
Friday 5-8 a.m. (Live), (Beginning of second round on tape delay, 2:30-5 a.m.)
Saturday 4-8 a.m. (Live) / 1:30-3 p.m. (Replay)
Sunday 3:30-8 a.m. (Live) / 10 a.m-Noon (Replay)

Headlining the field: Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Martin Kaymer, Victor Dubuisson, Jamie Donaldson, Ernie Els, Charl Schwartzel and Darren Clarke.

Weekend Wrap – Tuesday Edition

patrickreedPGA Tour
Hyundai Tournament of Champions
Dates: Jan. 9-12
Kapalua Resort (Plantation Course)
Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii

The first PGA Tour week of 2015 has come to a close on a rare Monday finish, and not because the tournament ended in a playoff.  The tournament simply ends on Monday, having started on the previous Friday.  Mind you, this is not the first week of the 2015 season with the advent of the wrap-around schedule.  This is officially the “2014-2015″ season.  For most though, the Hyundai Tournament of Champions marks the beginning of the PGA Tour season, as it has done for many years.

The tournament featured a solid field with notables like Masters champion Bubba Watson, Jason Day, and Zach Johnson.  Big names missing from the event, as per their usual winter breaks, include Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Adam Scott, Rory McIlory.

When the tournament came down to the wire two players finished tied at -21, Patrick Reed and Jimmy Walker.  Patrick Reed, dressed in a Tiger Woods Sunday style black pant and red shirt, eagled the 16th to give himself a shot at the win, settling for the playoff.  Reed birdied the fun 18th finishing hole the second time in 20 minutes on the first playoff hole to take home the victory.

Reed was criticized by the media and golf fans months ago for telling the world he was a top five player.  Apparently he knew something the rest of the world did not.  He’s well on his way to moving to the top five in the world rankings.

Next Week

Next week the PGA Tour stays in the paradise of Hawaii, moving to the Sony Open. The venue moves to the island of Oahu and Waialae Country Club. The field next week will be a full field, unlike the winners-only field at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions.

Tiger Woods Starts 2015 at Phoenix and Torrey

TigerWoodsBig news in the golf world, which was announced by Tiger Woods via his Twitter account about 20 minutes ago.  For the first time since 2001, Tiger Woods will be playing in the Phoenix Open and the crazy TPC Scottsdale.  This is the home of the PGA Tour’s largest crowds, and the insane par-3 16th hole with its huge and crazy grandstands.

The following week Tiger will be competing at Torrey Pines for the Farmers Insurance Open.

The Phoenix Open is contested January 29th-February 1st. The Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines is the following week, February 5th-8th. You can check the entire 2014-2015 PGA Tour season here.

Weekend Preview – 2015 Begins

k-bigpicHyundai Tournament of Champions
Dates: Jan. 9-12
Venue: Kapalua Resort (Plantation Course), Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Friday 4:30-10 p.m. (Live) / 11 p.m.-4:30 a.m. (Replay)
Saturday 1-7 p.m. (Live) / 8 p.m.-2 a.m. (Replay)
Sunday 5-9:30 p.m. (Live) / 10:30 p.m.-5:30 a.m. (Replay)
Monday 4-8 p.m. (Live) / 9 p.m.-1 a.m. (Replay)

Tournament Airtimes on NBC (Eastern):
Sunday 2:30-5 p.m. (Live)

Headlining the field: Bubba Watson, Billy Horschel, Jason Day, Zach Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Chris Kirk, Patrick Reed, Jimmy Walker, Hideki Matsuyama, Chesson Hadley and Hunter Mahan.

GuanTianlangEUROPEAN TOUR
South African Open Championship
Dates: Jan. 8-11
Venue: Glendower Golf Club, Johannesburg, South Africa

Tournament Airtimes On Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 3:30-5:30 a.m., 7:30-10:30 a.m. (Live) / 12:30-4:30 p.m. (Replay)
Friday 7:30-10:30 a.m. (Live), (Beginning of second round on tape delay, 5:30-7:30 a.m.)
Saturday 5:30-9:30 a.m. (Live)
Sunday 5:00-9:30 a.m. (Live)

Headlining the field: Ernie Els, Charl Schwartzel, Branden Grace, George Coetzee, Thomas Aiken, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Eduardo Molinari, David Horsey, and Morten Orum Madsen.

Winter Break Comes to an End

TigerWoodsWelcome to the first full week in January 2015.  The holidays are over and so is the PGA Tour’s winter break.  The season started clear back on October 9th, 2014, part of the new “wrap-around” schedule.  But for many this week’s Tournament of Champions in Hawaii marks the real beginning of golf for the year.

Later this week watch for a preview of the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, along with TV times and notes.

It begins this week.

Jordan_Spieth2015 should prove to be a very interesting year.  Many predict Rory McIlory will finish off the career grand slam by winning the Masters.  Those same pundits are puzzled and not sure what to predict for Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, who both had down years.

And which of the newcomers has the best shot at a major win?  Most predict that achievement for Rickie Fowler or Jordan Spieth.

Let the games begin.