Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Tiger to play in the Arnie

A week ago, the Arnold Palmer Invitational, which Tiger Woods won four years in a row when it was the Bay Hill Invitational, wasn't listed his website's schedule as being among his upcoming events.
This year would have been the first time ever he skipped the Orlando tournament, and talk had already started that Tiger was "dissing" The King.
The Arnie is back.

Minutes ago, Tiger's latest monthly newsletter landed in my emailbox, returning the tourney to his schedule.

D.C.'s new tourney: AT&T National

AT&T National, that's the word out of a press conference today to unveil many of the details of the new Fourth of July week tournament hosted by the Tiger Woods Foundation.

This year, the likely venue will be Congressional Country Club, site of the 1997 U.S. Open, but the longterm home is unclear.

One big question for this year is whether Tiger will play. Wife Elin is due to have to baby in July.

For the full announcement from the PGA Tour, click here.


If you saw the story in the Inquirer on the Golf Association of Philadelphia going after sandbaggers, you might want to know more.

Here's a link to the press release from GAP, with all the details.

And here's a link to an execellent website run by Dean Knuth, the Pope of Slope, best known for his years running the handicap system for the USGA.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Oakmont's bridge to the Open

If not for a $500,000 pedestrian bridge that Oakmont Country Club built over the Pennsylvania Turnpike in 2003, the Pittsburgh-area club never would have landed this year's U.S. Open.
(If you missed the '94 Open, the course is dissected by the turnpike.)

Gerry Dulac tells the tale of the bridge in the Pittsbugh Post-Gazette.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Why Match Play Doesn't Work

Here's interestng story from the NY Times, penned by a former member of the Metropolitan Golf Association, offering his theory on why match play tournaments often turn out to be snoozers, missing the best players in the finals. Makes a lot of sense to me.

Here's the "nut graf," as we say in newspapers:

First, in single elimination, the winner has to be dominant or lucky. A golfer of Woods’s superiority should make it to the finals just about every year. But a simple statistical analysis can show that even a player with an 80 percent chance of winning each match has only about a 40 percent chance of making it through five rounds to the finals. Against most golfers, Woods is that dominant. So why does he get knocked out early so often? Unlucky?

There is a deeper reason, one rooted in the nature and scoring of the two games. In golf, although the pros take 70 or so strokes a full round, they have at most 18 chances to win or lose a hole, or a point, in match play. The story is much different in tennis. In a three-set match with an average of 10 games a set and 6 points a game, there are 180 chances to win or lose a point. That is 10 times more opportunities to determine the winner.