Here’s a recap of the busy day in golf today, the Monday before The Masters.
1. Phil Mickelson won the BellSouth Classic by winning a 4 hole, 5 man playoff. The other 4 playoff players were Jose Maria Olazabal, Rich Beem, Brandt Jobe and Arjun Atwal.
Olazabal was a whole golf story on his own. He had a chance to win the tournament in regulation, but his nerves got the best of him. He pulled a short birdie putt on 18 in regulation, and did the same thing on the first playoff hole. Jobe and Atwal knocked their 2nd shots in the drink on the 1st playoff hole, leaving Mickelson, Beam and Olazabal to continue on to the 2nd playoff hole.
On the 4th playoff hole, Olazabal had a nuclear meltdown. He had to hack out of the salad bar and then hope to knock his 3rd shot on the green and make birdie. Instead he knocked his 3rd AND fifth shots into the drink on 18. At that point it was “adios Jose.” Phil then drained a 20 foot birdie putt to close out Beam and claim his 3rd victory of the year and the 26th of his career.
2. Jack Nicklaus announced today that he WILL compete in The Masters this year. Glad to hear it.
3. Many players were on the course at Augusta practicing today. It was fun to watch DLIII, Haas, Clarke and many others go through their practice routines on the range. You can go to www.masters.org and see live cameras all week from different locations. The camera stayed on long after the players left. It was kind of funny to watch one grounds crew guy out there picking up range balls by hand.
4. On a personal note, I stopped in at my club today to give a friend some shopping money. He’s flying out to The Masters tomorrow. I gave him $200 and a shopping list of Masters goodies. The main thing on my list is a Masters flag.
5. On a 2nd personal note, one of my 3 golf leagues is tomorrow. Not sure that will happen since now (9:55pm) it is HAILING SIDEWAYS here.
Tiger sighting at Augusta