BBC BLOGS - Iain Carter

Archives for January 2012

Woods needs consistency to challenge for majors

Post categories:

Iain Carter | 20:06 UK time, Sunday, 29 January 2012

Following up a low round with another is one of the hardest tasks in professional golf.

In his pomp it was one of Tiger Woods's many strengths and it helped set him apart from the rest.

This is no longer the case, as he showed in his comparatively ragged finish to the Abu Dhabi Championship on Sunday, when he surrendered a share of the overnight lead to finish joint third.

Woods's disappointing closing 72 was nothing new and continued a trend that has been a feature of his game for the last couple of years.

During his near faultless 66 in the third round, commentators and pundits claimed we now had confirmation that the 14-time major champion was back to his best. It was a premature assessment.

Read the rest of this entry

Amazing Grace, but Garcia & co set for Abu Dhabi do

Post categories:

Iain Carter | 19:27 UK time, Sunday, 22 January 2012

With all due respect to South Africa and its latest golfing sensation Branden Grace there is an overwhelming feeling that the 2012 golf season starts in earnest this week.

Grace deserves plenty of respect after he secured a brilliant double when he won the Champions tournament on the Links at Fancourt on Sunday. The recent Qualifying School graduate beat big-name compatriots Ernie Els and Retief Goosen in a play-off to claim his second title in seven days.

There was a time when those two South African giants were - with Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Vijay Singh - members of the game's "big five". But this is no longer the case and the waning Els and Goosen have shifted to the periphery of the big-time stage.

Read the rest of this entry

Is the use of belly putters unethical?

Post categories:

Iain Carter | 15:47 UK time, Monday, 16 January 2012

Watching Johnson Wagner's PGA Tour victory in Hawaii served another reminder that putters will continue to be one of the biggest talking points in golf.

Although Wagner wielded a conventional short stick to stab home his winning two footer (he nearly missed) the leaderboard was peppered with players using all manner of implements to negotiate the greens.

Most striking was Matt Every's BlackHawk putter with its oversized head that resembled the top of a shoe box attached to a conventional length shaft. It proved highly effective for three rounds and downright ugly on all four days.

"It gets my hands in the same spot every time," said Every, who entered the final round tied for the lead. "I just feel a lot more square over the putt. It's the first tournament. If I start playing well with it, maybe it will catch on."

If it does become popular with the pro's it may improve putting stats but will do nothing for the aesthetics of the game and much the same could be said of the plethora of belly putters and broomhandles that seem to be growing ever more popular.

Read the rest of this entry

European Tour will survive slashed bonuses

Post categories:

Iain Carter | 15:31 UK time, Monday, 9 January 2012

In 2008, the European Tour were shouting from the top of Dubai’s skyscrapers about the news of a massive cash injection from the Emirate that would bring “a new dimension” to their schedule.

This year, that most lavish of launches has been replaced by a low-key email telling of a reduced bonus pool available for this year’s Race to Dubai.

It is a sign of the current economic times that the Tour’s top golfers will not be able to cash in on their ability this year to the extent they have in previous ones.

Three years ago, just as the “Race to Dubai” was being launched, the world economy crashed.

Read the rest of this entry

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.