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Rory and Tiger trot to Turkey

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BBC Sport blog editor | 20:47 UK time, Monday, 8 October 2012

It's time to talk Turkey. The end of the European Tour season is in need of pepping up after the success of the FedEx Cup on the US circuit.

Bosses at the Wentworth-based Tour recognise this and it appears we are set for a major change from next year. Turkey is ready to become part of a new look to the climax of the Race to Dubai.

This week the country stages an unofficial tournament, the inaugural Turkish Airlines World Final event at the Antalya Golf Club in Belek.

It is an eight-man exhibition with Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy heading a field that will play medal matchplay for a first prize of $1.5 million. Those finishing seventh and eighth in the tournament are guaranteed $300,000.

Rory McIlroy at the Turkish Airlines World Final press conference

Rory McIlroy could pile up the air miles with future season finales scheduled for China and Turkey. Photo: Getty

"It will be a lot of fun," the top two players in the world agreed at the prospect of facing each other on Wednesday. The organisers hope McIlroy and Woods will meet again in Friday's final.

The other competitors, Justin Rose, Lee Westwood, Webb Simpson, Hunter Mahan, Charl Schwartzel and Matt Kuchar will, of course, have other ideas.

"Fun" is the operative word. There are no ranking points at stake and while McIlroy would love to put one over Woods, he told BBC Sport: "Whatever the result, I don't think you can look too much into it because it's not like we are going head to head in the final day of a major.

"But I'm sure we will be trying pretty hard out there and trying to beat one another and hopefully I can come out on top."

The real significance of this week is that it opens up the Turkish market to professional golf at the highest level. The country is desperate to show it can stage big events as it readies itself for another bid to stage the Olympics.

Next year it is expected that this tournament will become a big-money, 78-man strokeplay contest on the European Tour staged the week ahead of the season finale in Dubai.

Tour boss George O'Grady has hinted that it will form part of an end of season run that will be akin to, but not a replica of, the PGA Tour's Play-off series.

It would include the BMW Masters in Shanghai and the HSBC WGC event, also staged in China.

"Hopefully that can happen," McIlroy said. "I know there's a lot of talk going on with Shanghai going from a thirty-man to eighty-man field this year, this (Turkey) maybe going to a bigger field next year in big money events.

"I think that's what the European Tour needs to give it some sort of buzz like the PGA Tour has and get the best players playing week in, week out. It will mean a very busy end to the season for us, but an exciting one too."

McIlroy will defend his title in Shanghai later this month - it was an unofficial event last year. But he is expected to miss the WGC tournament that is moving to Shenzen, also in China, the following week.

The absence of the world number one will be a glaring omission and Woods is not likely to be there either. This won't impress the paymasters and keeping sponsors happy is vital in the current economic climate.

Revamping of the season end is key to the Tour's future strategy, especially if it is to make the most of the extra interest generated by Europe's sensational Ryder Cup victory.

The events at Medinah have resonated on both sides of the Atlantic. We should be in no doubt how much defeat has hurt the American players.

Woods personally apologised to the four American rookies for not contributing more and admits it was "tough" to come to terms with yet another US defeat.

It's worth remembering not a euro, pound, dollar or cent was at stake in Chicago, just a famous trophy.

The motives are somewhat different this week in Turkey but the advent of pro golf here may well have a value that will be felt very significantly in the seasons to come.


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  • Comment number 1.

    This comment has been referred for further consideration. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

    Interesting format, going to see some top players going head to head in a strokeplay/matchplay tournament. Would like to see Rory and Tiger going against each other twice without the pressure of having to win. Great prelude to next season where they will be battling out on Sundays for the major honours.
    These type of end of season jollies will hopefully attract the much needed sponsorship the European Tour needs and result in bigger and better tournaments in years to come.

  • Comment number 3.

    Just to let you know the BLOGS OPEN,and no mention of the Leeds Honda Classic

  • Comment number 4.

    Clearly the BBC reporters had set off early to Turkey... perhaps someone here would like to talk us through the DFB 'bouncing bomb' on 18!

  • Comment number 5.


    With McIroy and possibly Woods pulling out of the WGC is this competion dieing slowly,as it seems to me the play offs are getting bigger and bigger.

    Surely it must be time for the Europran and Asian tours to join forces and try and compete against the might of the PGA Tour, with possibly fewer events but better purses, or is the ranking points system favoured towards the PGA Tour,thus making the euro and asian tours 2nd Rate

  • Comment number 6.

    jimmy my picks for the turkey airlines stupid amount of money invite only tournament

    picks for the

    Gary Woodland
    Nicolas Colsaerts
    Bud Cauley

    and finally picks for the Portugal Masters

    Padraig Harrington
    Martin Kaymer
    Franseco Molinari

    P.s Don't forget my 5 points from the Ryder Cup,were I believe you made a few mistakes, and I thought you were perfect

  • Comment number 7.

    Mania, i like your point about a Euro/Asia combined tour. But what chance will it have when the worlds best two golfers are not bothering to play the WGC event in China. If WGC is to become truly global then it will need to attract these players otherwise i can see them reverting back to the PGA. Is it right that the proposed WGC in South Africa has also been shelved?

  • Comment number 8.

    On the subject of European golf, perhaps it's worth mentining that Brandon Grace's victory in the Dunhill Links this weekend gone was his Fourth ET win (and fifth worldwide win) this season. Wonder if he's ready to join the illustrious list of South African major winners any time soon- Locke, Player, Els, Goosen, Immelman, Oostheuizen, Schwartzel.... they don't half produce some good'uns don't they?

    There's an intersting piece on the Golf Channel's wbsite making a case for Grace to be ET player of the year, ahead of McIlroy. It's not that ludicrous a suggestion- whilst Rory is a certainty to win the PGA of America/PGA Tour awards, speaking srictly in European terms, he's won 1 ET event this year (his PGA Championship win counts as an ET win), obviously hasn't won in Europe and indeed has only played 3 events in Europe itself (one of which was The Open). Thoughts?

  • Comment number 9.

    5 & 7- The WGC-HSBC sufers from a bit of an identity crisis. Taking place as it does in what is currentley the PGA Tour off-season (though not for much longer, of course), it doesn't count towards a PGA Tour Members 15-event mnimum requirement and any monies won aren't 'official', i.e. don't count to the Career Money List. Howver if a PGA Tour member wins it (as Phil did a year or two back) then they get credited with a PGA Tour victory and get the usual 3-year exemption for winning a WGC event.

    I don'y know if the restructured PGA Tour season will have an effect on the strength of field directly, but it should ensure the event gets full official status, that it would count towards minimum-event requirements on both tours for dual members like Rory etc.

  • Comment number 10.

    Graces progress this season has been tremendous. He is another product of the Ernie Els foundation. Following in the footsteps of Oosthuizen and Swartzel. This being his first win on actual European soil ( 2 in SA and 1 in China) will perhaps give him the confidence to push on towards a major. If he wins the R2D he should be a shoe in for Euro player of the year.

  • Comment number 11.

    I have decided to go with the new trend of the shortened username, especially now that my branding is appearing on vans in the leeds area

    Firtly, and probably lastly, my picks. I'm not bothering with the Turkey thing as I don't think it counts. Oh but if it does I'll have Rose, Westwood and Schwartzel.

    Grégory BOURDY
    Danny WILLETT

    Bud Cauley,
    Ben Curtis,
    Troy Matteson.

    No copying, Wibbly!

  • Comment number 12.

    8 - Ross. Interesting point about Grace. Also interesting that the commentary team (Dougie Donelly mainly) were congratulating him on the win as they walked up the 18th. However Oleson left his putt an inch short, and had that gone in then Grace had a very missabel 5 footer for the win. It looked comfortable in the end, but I've seen players lose from better positions. WCIHIS on Friday for instance.

    The commentary team also compared his achievement to various others, and I forget the details but I think he is the first to win 4 times in his debut season. Regardless, its a great achievement and it will be interesting to see if he keeps this going next year and can make an impression in the majors.

  • Comment number 13.

    Another side point is that Tom Lewis defends at Portugal. His failure to kick on has been quite a surprise. It reminds me a bit of Justin Rose who had a torrid time before eventually making some cuts, winning in Europe, then in the US and now is an solid Ryder Cup Player and is well-established in the worlds top ten. Next stop, hopefully a major.

    But it will be interesting to see if Lewis can come back or if he will fade away

  • Comment number 14.

    10, WCIHIS - there was a funny (I thought) commentary when Oosthuizen won the Open and they mentioned that he had been through the Ernie Els Academy. One of them said "Maybe its time for Ernie to go through the Louis Oosthuizen Academy".

    Quite ironic too given Els' Open win this year,. Maybe he followed the advice?

  • Comment number 15.

    You just had to go there BMG didnt you. Mania cheated by driving straight whilst i lived up to my username.
    This loadsamoney invite only Turkey thingy has got full TV coverage of all four days so is in prime position to attract future sponsorship should it become a full field event in the coming years. Will however the American players opt for California or Turkey in the Autumn.( not much chance of Syria being at war with California)

  • Comment number 16.

    WCIHIS - I apologise. It was either you or DBF for his 3 yard dribbler, and I think we've possibly exhausted that one.

    By the way, I don't think this is one of Iain's better blogs. Or is it just me?

  • Comment number 17.

    Could be a slow burner. Plenty of time to exploit DBF dribbler and dambuster shot.
    I would imagine that Mt Carter is in Turkey and is using this opportunity to help promote it. However his support perhaps should have been towards Portugal.

  • Comment number 18.

    13- BMG, had totally forgotten about Tom Lewis! His win in Portugal was something like his third event as a pro, no? You're right, his failure to kick on is somewhat bemusing, especially since he's had the chance to get into a few big'uns on the back of that Portugal win- he made the WGC Bridgestone field for instance. Let's hope it's only a temporaary blip.

  • Comment number 19.

    Morning, to shorten or not to shorten that is the question.
    George O Grady is a shrewd fella and has already embraced the east and South Africa within the Euro tour. Personally I dont think the tour needs a big change but it seemsa few of the actual Euro events will make way for events in sunnier wealthier climates.
    The tour will go where the sponsors are prepared to back events. All the new money in the world is in the East so it makes sense to stage events out there.
    Regarding Grace he had a stella start to the year winning back to back on the sunshine tour much earlier in the year. He looks to be another quality young South African who could kick on and win majors.
    AH the Barnes Wallace shot I forgot about that nice bit of showboating to end a great weekend.

  • Comment number 20.

    jimmy prediction for tukey no one teed off yet
    Rory, Mahan, Rose

  • Comment number 21.

    If were doing the Turkey trot then predictions are Tiger, Rory, Justin.

  • Comment number 22.

    wcihis in by the skin of your teeth like it.

  • Comment number 23.

    Why what time do they tee off and who is first match.

  • Comment number 24.

    First match Rory against Kucher second out Tiger Schwartzel, wcihis did you not read last night??

  • Comment number 25.

    When was last night.

  • Comment number 26.

    can see Tom Lewis put up a decent defense, he had a great fnal round at st andrews last week so maybe some form commng back

  • Comment number 27.

    Who cares about the outcome of the Race to Dubai or the Turkish Airlines tournament? What are their significance beyond maximising the incomes of PGA players? It's like watching footballers earning bonuses for meaningless matches at the end of a season when all the trophies and titles have been settled.

    The Ryder Cup, the Open and the US Open all have a special significance beyond the prize money. They are prestigious, rooted in tradition and a point of reference when we talk about the Greats. The others are just side-shows for television.

    I think the European Tour has to look at hosting something like a World Open Championship, based on the Open model (ie qualifiers throughout the World). For me, it can reduce the number of meaningless Majors and put all its prize money into something that no PGA player would miss.

  • Comment number 28.

    I think as people have touched on here, the Eastern/Asian market is where the bigger money is rather than europe - some could argue they have more money to spend on lucrative golf purses than America

    they do need the big players to play - and why are some Americans playing in Turkey - a lot of money is on the line

    That may still be the case in China but its a lot further away to travel and its a proper event - rather than a pressure-free matchplay event and some of the yanks will want to gain some revenge im sure!

    First post since Ryder Cup - great victory, knew it was going to be close but what a finish!!

    I don't know why the USA team mis-manage Tiger Woods - his powers of recovery are superb because he puts himself in trouble - so they should leave him out of the fourballs cos stricker is not used to being in such places - it affected both their games and they both played like plonkers all week

    it is inconceivable to think that Woods and Stricker got 1/2 point between them.

    well done Rose - key putt for the cup, although Kaymers 8 footer to retain the trophy took some real german steel!

  • Comment number 29.

    Edith I think you miss the point of the race to Dubai final event, the top 60 in the order of merit qualify for the end of season Dubai world Championship, I guess its because unlike the US tour there is not a big hey look at this kind of fanfare about it.

  • Comment number 30.

    28 YB, nice post overall, but I see that Kaymer's putt has grown a bit in the last few weeks. In the live broadcast it was a 5 1/2 footer! By the time the next RC comes round it will be a 40 foot bomb!

    Seriously though, I suppose this is trivial but I wonder how long it really was (Matte - have you got your tape measure handy?). Woosie's putt to win the Masters seems to vary between 5 and 10 feet.

    I always imagine the player lying down, and if its a body length from the hole then its about 6 foot. But then that's just me. Mind you, that method wouldn;t really work in DBF's case would it?

  • Comment number 31.

    Looks to me like the European tour consists of events held for our 2nd tier of golfers, while all the top boys play for most part in America. The events held in USA are more competitive and worth loads more money. No wonder we dont see Rory, Luke etc playing in Europe apart from invitation matches like this week, were they get paid fortunes for just turning up.

  • Comment number 32.

    30th September 2012 - 12:18 Golden Bear wrote
    The singles session will end up 10-2 to Team USA, giving a final tally of 20-8.

    Listen to the Bear. The Bear knows best.


  • Comment number 33.

    Edith, sorry to disagree with you but ""something that no PGA player would miss" would have to be held in the USA as some of them don't even believe there is life beyond their own shores. Look at the list that declined invitations to the Open Championship - if that doesn't attract them then nothing will.

  • Comment number 34.

    32 WCIHIS - Wonderful post there.

  • Comment number 35.

    Jimmy: Rors, Justin & Mahan.

  • Comment number 36.

    #29 Hi DBF - sorry I wasn't very clear in putting a suggestion forward.

    Yes, the Race to Dubai is a final show down of the players in the Order of Merit, but my point is - so what? The Order of Merit is itself flawed, in that it produces No 1's who haven't won a Major all year, if ever!

    It's just a personal hunch that a tournament that actually called itself the World Open and gave the Harry Vardon trophy to the World Champion, would be a tournament that fans, sponsors, advertisers and players cared about.

  • Comment number 37.

    32 WCIHIS, at first I was surprise to notice that if you make a quick backwards extrapolation, GB amazingly had got the correct score (10-6) at the end of day 2.

    Then I realised that he made his post it AFTER day 2 had finished! There's me thinking he'd got something right.

  • Comment number 38.

    The Euro tour is more a world tour these days and maybe there in lies its strength.
    Not all the players want to play American based golf on the same sort of courses week in week out.
    If the Euro tour was so weak how come it produced two of the last 3 world number ones of which two of them were Euro based at the time.
    By nature things change and evolve, the fed ex was dreamed up to keep some late season interest much like the Dubai world championship. Maybe the Euro tour will try and create some big tournaments in the east to round off the season, buts lets hope its not some daft numerical points based lottery like the fed ex which no one understands.

  • Comment number 39.

    Woods v Rory? Pleaseeee...I think we can all now finally agree that Woods isn't even on Rorys level. If they played 10 matches heads up Rory would win 9 of them! No one is even close to Rory right now!

  • Comment number 40.

    if you take the Europeans from the PGA Tour...then it would be the same level as Japanese Tour. The PGA tour is the best in the world purely because of the European players that are members of it! No other reason.

  • Comment number 41.

    Kuchar is at the moment 2 shots up with 5 to play.

  • Comment number 42.

    Edith the only real draw back with the RTD is that like luke did last year and unofficially several times Tiger did it the order of merit can be won by playing a lot of co sanctioned or events in the states that count. I am not sure how many events proper the players have to play but all the majors and WGC events count on the order of merit so to win it a player needs to be in the worlds top 40 to maximise earning potential.
    There will never really be a proper world tournament unless one is created from scratch as the US seems to have the monopoly on them at the moment.
    Remember Greg Norman came up with a suggestion of a world tour years ago but good old uncle sams lot were having none of it. The only way you get the US players out of the states is fro big appearance fees or for major championships.
    The cushy easy life and wheelbarrow full of cash seems to keep them happy.

  • Comment number 43.

    I see Westwood is +3 after 9. The guy is past it. He should return to the European Tour and try get a few top 10 finishes before he retires.

  • Comment number 44.

    @ 8: Ross1980
    European Tour 'Player Of The Year' should be Ian Poulter - repeated every other year to reflect his dynamite Ryder Cup exploits...
    Reports of him being drafted to play in the Presidents Cup, by virtue or a South African grandmother, are totally unsubstantiated!

  • Comment number 45.

    I see McIlroy is +5 after 18. The guy is past it. He should return to the European Tour and try get a few top 10 finishes before he retires.

  • Comment number 46.

    Cracking post Steak and Ale Pie.

  • Comment number 47.

    lol McIlroy went +7 for the last 4 holes.
    The guy is burnt out.

    I see Lee shot the same score as he did in the final days singles of the RC...+1...and he still won. Thankfully he is getting drawn against guys who should really still be on the challenge tour.

  • Comment number 48.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 49.

    #48 I won't read jamesmathew's drivel on a matter of principle, so I assume he's at it again. Just ignore him - eventually he'll go away. Don't know why your comment was removed though (I had read it before it disappeared and agreed with it).

    #29 DBF - I can't get excited about the Dubai World Championship any more than I could about that nonsense in America last moth. I think it's a bit cheeky calling it by that name - At first glance it gives the impression of being some kind of World Championship, when it's just a tournament sponsored by "Dubai World", a holding company owned by the Dubai government.

    #13 BMG (and others) - I'd been wondering about Tom Lewis and couldn't help drawing the parallels with Justin Rose. Hopefully he'll come could again. If there was a professional golf county championship my boys Hertfordshire (Donald, Poulter, Lewis) would stuff the rest of you! :-)

    Right, that's me done!

  • Comment number 50.

    @Twoputtstowin lol your post taken down. No need to get all abusive!

  • Comment number 51.

    42 & others- Full European Tour members have to play a minimum 13 events in each year- this includes the four majors and three US-based WGC events, so that only leaves 6 events they have to make up from 'normal' ET events. The likes of Rory, Luke, Sergio- who, if we're being honest, are more-or-less full-time PGA Tour players- may typically only play the really lucrative ones (Wentworth, Dubai Desert Classic, Scotish Open etc.) or ones that are especially clsoe to their heart (Rory playing Portrush, Sergio playing a few Spanish events.)

    To criticise the PGA Tour/US golf in general for not supporting a 'World Tour' is ludicrous. Why the hell shoudl they support one? The PGA Tour is the one tour in golf that, on the one hand has the tradition of long-established evnts like Hilton Head, Colonial, Pebble Beach, Canadian Open etc and on the other has the stability, the support and the finnace/sponsorship to run it's ship properly. Why should they give up these well-run, well-supported, well-backed events for tin-pot start-up events in parts of the world (like Europe) where sponsors aren't prepared to put their hand in their pockets (hence no events in England bar Wenworth) and where the local government can drop support for events at a minute's notice (as happened with the Valderrama event, cancelled at very short notice after the regional government pulled the plug? O'grady and his cohorts in Euro Tour Towers should concentrate on getting their tour on a sure footing and show they are capaable/worthy of staging bigger and better events before a World Tour can ven be considered.

  • Comment number 52.

    TheRealJimmy, wherever you are! Picks for this week are:-
    Vijay Singh.
    Ernie Els.
    Bud Cauley

    Molinari. F.

    Thank you.

  • Comment number 53.

    James picks for frys
    Ernie Els,Bryce Molder, Freddie Jacobson.

    Portugal F Molinari, Kaymer and Paddy Harrington

    James I hope your ok and nothing untoward has happened since you left the merry gang on Saturday.

  • Comment number 54.

    @ 51 a bit harsh there, the Euro tour and its exec had the good sense and foresight to get events up and running in other parts of the world. Yes the US tour has money tradition and big sponsors agreed and I personally am not knocking it. The US based players earn a good living and have it all laid on a plate for them by all accounts so it explains their players reluctance to play anywhere other than stateside.
    The Euro tour has also worked with other tours to keep interest and competition going year round.
    The downside as you point out is a lack of tournaments now in Europe proper. Its a poor show that there is no English open or British Masters anymore. Until economies in Europe improve or new sponsors are found more events will vanish or be replaced with events further affield.

  • Comment number 55.

    this really is a bit of a jolly for the guys, with appearance money on top of the prize fund no doubt. After the ryder cup i'm sure there's none of them too fussed about it.

  • Comment number 56.

    Trev it looked a bit that way Rory as good as admitted that he gave up a bit after his 7 so that says it all really.

  • Comment number 57.

    @1 Goldenbear

    if that's all your interested in well I will have a laugh with you hahahahahahaha

  • Comment number 58.

    IMHO you speak a lot of sense,unlike one or two others who appear on here.

    @Y_B Good to see you back :-)


    Point taken,but i'm afraid grace at this moment in time should win hands down


    I'm pretty sure your on a different waive length to most of us,but every now and again I see your point,but unfortunatly
    not today :-(......and thinking about it,I'm not sure wether I've ever agreed with you,but you do make me laugh

  • Comment number 59.

    I think Mr McIlroy is only there for the money this week. Comments like "I struggled for motivation" and "after hitting it in the trees on 15, I lost confidence" don't bode well for : the sponsors ; himself ; the european tour.
    I mean, it must be hard to come down to earth after the mother of all RC parties. But to not practice for a week ? Come on ! His putting looked most rusty today, (however I didn't see the +4 for the last few holes). Surely he can put some effort in for at least a couple of hours a day ?

    If we are being honest, this week is a rubbish time to hold this competition though you cant blame the "magnificent" 8 for chasing the Lira.

    In some (most) ways Brandon Grace should be at the top of the RTD.
    Should the Majors count towards both tours ? For events counting, toward tour commitment ? Yes. For £/$ towards the top of the list ? No

  • Comment number 60.

    @59 wibbly

    If he needs a putting lesson,send him my way 11 putts front nine Saturday.Jimmy and WCIHIS were not amused :-)

  • Comment number 61.

    Wibb that's the point about the rtd you can win it by being a part time member and stalwarts like Jimenez who have won and had good placings regularly never get near.
    In the top 6 for the RTD the only two you would class as Euro players are Molinari and Grace. Pretty much the rest play the minimum events and are there based on majors and WGC money. Current leader Rory second Rose third Grace fourth Els.

  • Comment number 62.


    I think you will find me up there ;-)

  • Comment number 63.


    I heard you had a bit of a dambusters moment at the weekend ? would you like to explain

  • Comment number 64.

    James Matthew, those of us who play competitive golf are constantly reminded that in match play the score doesn't matter, it's about beating the man in front of you. But I doubt you play to a 'competitive' standard.

  • Comment number 65.


    is he worth it ?

  • Comment number 66.

    World numbers 1 and 2 could both be out of it before they play each other.

  • Comment number 67.

    Mania Just for you though you saw it, It was a scabby lie about 160 to the green over a pond wind off the left. I took the trusty rescue as the green was receptive anticipating flying it all the way. After lining up the shot I gave it a mighty swipe but the ball stayed low it hit the water at speed and started to bounce, I saw the first two bounces then it vanished behind the fountain. The cheering from the opposite side of the water confirmed that it had skipped over and was on the other side. Show boating or what?

  • Comment number 68.

    To all the bloggers who talk about silly season events,players not kicking on I urge you to read John feinstein's books a good walk.spoiled. The majors, and tales from Q school. All is explained in there. Turkey's golf courses are good but way overcrowded. Over 5 hour rounds. Same as.Rory and Tiger really. I agree that European POTY should actually go to someone who plays on the tour. Altho with a view to making it to the PGA tour. Maybe both tours should segregate events into world tour list. China Turkey a d Dubai are neither in Europe or USA nor SA
    I also think Morse events should be played in the UK maybe with extra ranking points. I wonder what Olly said to Peter Hanson to make him feel better about not scoring a point! You contributed in2010 . holding off Dufner till the last stopped.momentum. I hate media cliches momentum,kick start,kick on,over the white line, lost the dressing room! Mostly football I know not needed here sorry.

  • Comment number 69.

    Marty, you raise a few interesting points. I agree that Feinsteins golf books are a good read (althought there are better golf books out there, according to my agent DBF). Caddy for Life is another good one.

    I hadn't given much thought to the segregation of the tour, but one thing I will say is about the World Golf Tour that Greg Norman tried to start. In a nutshell, TIm Finchem killed that off using a masterclass of politics. It certainly seems to me that he wants as much control as possible and the players, with the possible exception of Tiger in his heyday, are just pawns really.

    You often hear of 'momentum' and then of people saying that there is no such thing, but I think Hanson's brief comeback and him holding Dufner off did give Euro the momentum at a stage where they needed every possible advantage.

  • Comment number 70.

    BMG I take it you refer to the humorous golf novel geddin the hole available at amazon written by mr F Grundy esq

  • Comment number 71.

    To be honest daveyboy... it could be eclipsed by your soon to be released "101 Ways to Get to the Green".
    I for one can't wait!

  • Comment number 72.

    70 DBF: kerching! Another 10% of nothing!

    71 cfc: I think I've heard of that one. Does it also include a chapter (ghost written by mania) on what to do once you get there?

  • Comment number 73.

    #72... not sure. Not really heard much about mania's putting recently. Hmmmm...
    Bit like we haven't heard much recently about how Monty once captained the RC team...

  • Comment number 74. the place and time...and I would wipe the floor with you golf wise.
    None of these handycaps just straight up net golf!

  • Comment number 75.

    54- The British masters is a sad loss, and as you rightly ponit, was lost becasue of no title sponsor. I do recall they moved from the (IMHO) dull-as-dishwater Forest of Arden to the magnificent (dare I say 'iconic') Belfry to drum up some interest. I do recall it's the event Rory made his debut as a pro in. However, IIRC, the Brit masters was dropped prior to the finnancial proverbial hitting the fan. Not sure on that, however.

    The English Open was supposed to be restored to the calendar a few years back- only problem was they were going to restore it as an 'alternate' event to the PGA Championship (the one in America, not the Wentworth one!) An example of the Euro Tour not really helping themselves.

    In fact, the stunning ineptitude of the ET schedulers exetnds to most of the UK events. For instance, the Wales Open- potentially a huge event- is played opposite Jack Nicklaus' Memorial Tournament on the PGA Tour- an event where anyone who's anyone in golf plays in, meanining a porr turnour and poor attendances at the Wales event. Whilst the Irish Open at Portrush was rightly considered a huge success, imagine how many more top players might have played in it had it not clashed with AT&T National at Congressional? Even Wentworth's played opposite one of the oldest tournaments on the PGA Tour, the Byron Nelson (Sergio played the Nelson over Wentworth for years, as did Poulter I believe).

    I know there are certain people at ET Towers who like to pretend that America doesn't exist, but the relatity is somewhat different. With the likes of Mcilroy not just playing in America, but taking them on and beating them at their own game, the incentive for European golfers to chse the dollar rather than the euro will become greater not less.

  • Comment number 76.

    I would gladly oblige with my tales of weird and wonderful approach shots. I did warn you cfc that I might be doing my best seve impression at times. I certainly found places on the course no one else knew existed.

  • Comment number 77.

    I wonder if mania will include the putt that jumped in his repertoire of great putting?

  • Comment number 78.

    @Ross1980 .... The British Open is by far the biggest event in Britain.

  • Comment number 79.

    78- The British open??? Sorry, you've lost me.

    If you mean The Open Championship, you're referring to an event organised by the R&A. An event that has diddly-squat to with ET towers, and and event which counts towards the PGA Tour too, and which most top America pros play in. What this event has to do with my point about poor ET scheduling of their events (you know, the ones they actually DO run) I'm not sure?

    In my list of ET 'sins' I forgot to emntion the (provocative?) scheduling of Gleneagles against The Barclays (the first FedExc Cup event). In 2014 the Ryder Cup comes to the same PGA Centenary Course a mere matter of weeks after the Gleneagles Tour stop, assuming they keep the same tour schedule- I accept that they may move the event to a different week or course for obvious reasons. But imagine the fallout if a player on 'the bubble' of RC selection (Poulter anyone?) chooses to play in the States instead?

  • Comment number 80.

    #79 jamesmathew is trolling again - he knows referring to "The British Open" will get a reaction - just ignore him.

  • Comment number 81.

    @ross1890 Yes thats the tournament I meant, the british open championship...I thought you would understand what I meant without having to put the word 'championship' after it. point is that the BO is by far one of the biggest events held in the U.K and is one of the biggest in the world...and it belongs to the european tour!

    So what your saying makes no sense.

  • Comment number 82.

    In the past on this blog i've thrown out a format or idea of what i felt was a Utopian vision of how the tours could conduct their future business (Greater co-operation, better spread of events etc). Which was vagualy similar to some of the ideas espoused here. The problem is the more you come to look at it 2 things become clear

    1) There actually isnt A perfect version of what could lie ahead, everyone would like to see a different future, many are similar with a slight twist, some dramatically different
    2) The greater integration of the tours is simply impossible, possible not impossible to organise, but certainly impossible to generate sufficient goodwill from the necessary parties.

    Therefore i have now come up with a new solution. It much more straightforward, simple for anyone with a love of golf to follow, and cannot fail to work.

    Just watch, pay attention to and invest your time in those events that hold your interest. For example, i think that the turkish event taking place this week is meaningless, A money making exhibition. I dont blame the players for taking the money, i'd do the same but i dont care who wins, so i wont pay a great deal of attention. Similarly is you dont like the contrived Fed-Ex play-offs, switch off. If you think the Majors are all thats worth watching, just tune in for them. That way you only get the golf you enjoy and want to watch without the "filler". What could be easier?

  • Comment number 83.

    In the above post the word possible, should have said possibly. It makes no sense otherwise

  • Comment number 84.

    81- it DOES NOT 'belong' to the European Tour. The Open Championship has been in existence since 1860- a full 100 years before the European Tour ever came into being. The ET has the square root of nothing to do with the Open, its running, its organisation, its scheduling or its (not inconsiderable) profit. It is run by the R&A and is a sanctioned event on the European Tour, but also on the PGA Tour (and Japan Tour, since you ask) and has as much to do with them as it does the ET. Make up ridiculous statemnets all you like, but don't present things that are blatantly untrue as fact.

  • Comment number 85.

    @ Jimmy....picks for this week are:

    Portugal - G Coetzee, P Larrazabal, A Quiros

    USA - N Colsaerts, F Jacobson, P Cantlay

    Read 'em and weep BMG. Oh are already weeping !!!! ;-)

  • Comment number 86.

    Portugal: Noren Gonzo Manassero
    Frys: Knost Vegas Colsaerts

  • Comment number 87.

    @84...firstly and you can google this...the british open championship is part of the regular european pga tour and is a permanent fixture on every year during the summer. it is the main united kingdom golf event and was founded by the united kingdom a long time ago.

    There are four order...the Masters, the Open, the UK (British) Open and the PGA.

  • Comment number 88.

    James James James you missunderstood individual in your world The Open is organised by the pixies and father Christmas. You should learn to do something more constructive with your internet allowance, maybe actually research some real facts, still actually don't bother as you might actually make some sense then which would give your trolling some worth :)

  • Comment number 89.


    Overton, Caulay, Howell III
    Molinari, Kaymer, Willett

  • Comment number 90.

    87- The Open may be PART of the European Tour but it is not RUN by it. The R&A are a totally seperate organisation. I'm suprised your google search didn't turn that up. Nor are any of the other majors run by any of the tours, though most make room in their schedule for them (as the ET do with The Open) But that that doesn't make them 'their' events.

    In 2016, the R&A (and the PGA of America) will have to move their Majors to differnet weeks in the schedule to what they normally occupy because of the Rio Olympics. It will the R&A's decision as to where it will be moved to, nobody elses, certainly not the ET's.

    Anyway back to Golf. I see Rory is giving the event the event in Turkey all the care and attention it deserves- none! having 'phoned it in against Kuchar, I see he's lost to Schwartzel too. Needs a fairly nthumping win over Eldrick to make it into the semis.

  • Comment number 91.

    I know he's trolling but the blog is so boring i'm going to comment.
    The event is called "The Open Championship" and has no mention of UK or British (other nationalities available) in the title.
    It was first played in 1860 when golf clubs in England and Scotland were invited to send up to 3 players and the prize was a belt with a silver buckle, known as the Challenge Belt.
    The Claret Jug or Golf Champion Trophy wasn't introduced until 1873.
    The United Kingdom, a collective name for a group of countries, did not found the Open Championship.
    The main uk golf event is probably the PGA Championshop as the Open Championship is a GLOBAL event with international qualifying competitions run in several countries.

  • Comment number 92.

    Trev nice one but do you think our friend will read it? Can he read ? Both are doubtful!

  • Comment number 93.

    Pay them no Heed James, I'm with you on this one. The Royal and Annual British Open Golf Invitational Championship is without a doubt the biggest golf event. And the best and the European Tour should realise this instead of going to the Algarve and Morrocco. Its so good that they should play it more often, I'm guessing they dont because then the Royal and Annual would have to change their name but thats a small price to pay. Dont you think James?

  • Comment number 94.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 95.

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha fact you can't argue with those dates and facts eh?

  • Comment number 96.

    Cut and paste alert for those interested in a bit of social history.

    The name "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" was introduced in 1927 by the Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act. It reflected the reality that the de facto independence of the Irish Free State, created by the partitioning of Ireland in 1922, left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland still within the UK.[19] Prior to this, the Acts of Union 1800, that united the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland in 1801, had given the new state the name of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Great Britain before 1801 is occasionally referred to as the "United Kingdom of Great Britain".[20][21][22][23] However, Section 1 of both of the 1707 Acts of Union declare that England and Scotland are "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain".[24][25][nb 7] The term united kingdom is found in informal use during the 18th century to describe the new state but only became official with the union with Ireland in 1801.[26]

  • Comment number 97.

    Well this blog has really caught fire will it reach page 2?
    So what thoughts are out there regarding the turkey showcase, and I would be interested in the views about the players wearing shorts?

  • Comment number 98.

    that's all very well wcihis but I am more interested in your view on the shorts issue!

  • Comment number 99.

    @WCIHIS I didn't read your post after the first line but what has this to do with golf?

  • Comment number 100.

    There seemed to be confusion about who we are.


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