Friday, June 26, 2009

Vijay Stands By Financier Allen Stanford

Stanford Financial founder, Allen Stanford, is being held for swindling $7 billion from investors. Vijay tried to put up $500,000. as bail for Stanford. The federal magistrate, however, refused to allow Vijay to post the bail because he's not a U.S. citizen.

Stanford Financial was a sponsor of Vijay's for several years, an endorsement deal worth $8 million. According to a USA Today article, Vijay wants to help, since Stanford has only been charged and not yet found guilty. It's obvious a friendship existed given Stanford's company sponsored Vijay on the PGA Tour.

As a token of that friendship, Vijay tried to help. Half a million dollars is probably not much money to Vijay. Good for him for sticking up for a friend.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Lucas Glover Wins the U.S. Open

As Mickelson and Duval made charges near the end of the tournament, Glover held on for the victory. Apropos that he and his wife would love New York for him to win his first major and only his second pro victory in New York.

Mickelson and Duval tied for second, along with final round co-leader, Rickey Barnes. I'm sure disappointing for all. Amy won't have Phil's trophy in her hospital room as she starts treatment for breast cancer unfortunately. And, David Duval has to be pleased with his performance, yet disappointed with his tied for second place finish.

As to Rickey Barnes, it has to hurt to shoot six-over and lose the tournament. He admits to nerves and who can blame him. But, at least he'll be going to the Open in July, thanks to this finish.

As to my contest, it should come as no surprise that no one selected Lucas Glover. Congratulations, Lucas!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Tiger's Mouth

Whether on audio or by reading his lips, you've heard Tiger say expletives during his rounds. During this U.S. Open, as he struggles, I've heard or seen him drop a couple of F-bombs today.

He's fortunate to be married to Elin, who speaks Swedish. He apparently understands and speaks a few words of Swedish as well.

Maybe he should learn a couple of Swedish swear words, so he won't be caught on TV with his profanity.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

U.S. Open Winner Contest

Choose the winner of the 2009 U.S. Open before Thursday, the 18th, at 12:01 a.m. PT at this survey. Selected entry will win a free one-hour business golf consultation with me. So, enter now!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Winners' Clutch Shots

I watched the end of both of tournaments this weekend, the St. Jude Classic and the LPGA Championship. I was struck by how both winners, Brian Gay at the St. Jude and rookie Anna Nordqvist at the Championship, had phenomenal shots at the end of their tournaments.

Brian Gay hit a shot into a par-3 and on the final hole, both with water on the left. Both shots ended up being close to the hole and he extended his lead by two additional birdies. While Nordqvist finished as well with a shot into the final green and another birdie.

It was great to see how both stayed within their games and their emotions and could win with even bigger margins. They didn't get ahead of themselves and instead stayed focus in hitting good shots to the end.

As amateurs, we may not be able to hit the ball as far and pure, or putt as well as the pros, but one area that we can work on is our mental game. I think if we played our shots without expectation and, therefore, upset about errant shots, our emotions will stay more level, and we'll have better rounds.

Play well!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Phil's Return

Phil is back from time with his wife and focusing on her medical care. He's playing in the St. Jude Classic as he prepares for the U.S. Open in two weeks.

I've not always been a fan of his play, but have always liked him as a person. He seems approachable with fans as he gives high fives and tips his cap. At the same time, I've heard he's not so nice in the press room. Given the press these days, I can understand that.

It'll be interesting to watch how he does this weekend with what's on his mind. He said he'll be driving now and suddenly start to cry. He's obviously a man that loves his wife and family, and willing to let everyone see his vulnerability. And, I'm sure if he doesn't play well or even win the U.S. Open, he won't mind. There is only one battle that he's focused on now, and the one with Tiger and the rest of the field is not it.

Good luck, Phil, and best wishes to Amy, you, and your family!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Federer Learns from Woods?

I'm watching the French Open and Federer is trying to win this elusive career Grand Slam title today. He's hitting a forehand shot that has so much spin that the ball lands and barely bounces forward. It reminds me of Tiger hitting one of his shots with a lot of spin into the green. Tiger makes the ball snake back because he hits with grooves that bite into the ball. Federer, of course, can't get that much back spin on the ball, but his soft forehand is an amazing shot to watch. I've never seen it before, and it's won Federer several points in this second match.

Tiger and Federer are very good friends. I'm sure each has text messaged the other about each of their finals today. I wouldn't be surprised if the top competitors in their respective sports have collaborated to improve their games.

Good luck, Roger!

Monday, June 01, 2009

Playoff Weekend

This weekend's PGA Tour and Champions Tour both needed playoff holes to determine the victor. Congratulations to Steve Stricker, the winner at the Colonial, and Mark McNulty, the winner at the Principal Charity Classic.

Steve Stricker had to overcome several missed short putts during the round. If he had made just one of them, he would have been the winner without the extra holes against Tim Clark. Meanwhile Mark McNulty had to compete against Fred Funk for four extra holes before winning.

It made me realize how mentally tough pro golfers are and how they play a shot at a time. They must have amnesia when it comes to bad shots and putts, which allows them to then hit their next best shot.

I've only been in a playoff once and unfortunately lost in the playoff and finished second. I blame myself though because I wasn't mentally in the game. I went into the last round of a tournament eight to ten strokes behind the two leaders. When I looked at the leaderboard before I teed off, I told someone I just didn't want to finish last. But, when I was about to tee off on the first hole, I learned the two leaders were disqualified. Suddenly I was possibly in contention, but I didn't know my exact standing because the starter didn't have a revised leaderboard.

After the round, I went along with my usual routine of changing my shoes and putting my clubs away, thinking my day of golf was done. I didn't shoot well and certainly didn't think I finished in the money or would be in a playoff. So you can imagine my shock when I learned that I had to go back out to play in a playoff for the Championship. I didn't play well, and I ultimately lost on the second hole.

Where I made my mistake was thinking I was out of the tournament. I quit playing in my head and had already put my clubs away. I did so based on how I played that day, without considering how the other players shot that day.

It's clear that the pros don't think that way and are always thinking they're in contention until the leaderboard tells them otherwise. I certainly learned my lesson and will make sure to know the leaderboard the next time I play in a tournament.