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Rickie Fowler

5 Things: Kuchar learns Olympic format and Fowler’s new ‘hairdo’

Golfing Olympian Matt Kuchar all set for Rio and Rickie Fowler has a very strange haircut for his big week
 

1) Fowler’s new, er, hairdo for Rio

Nobody likes a bad haircut and I’m not sure even Rickie Fowler’s mum could give his new barnet the thumbs up. God only knows what he asked for but he’s certainly stand out in Rio this week.

His peers, too, weren’t huge fans. Brooks Koepka summed things up pretty succinctly when he said: “You will never see me looking like that anytime soon. It looks like he’s missing a whole chunk of hair on one side.”

 

Rickie Fowler

2) Olympic format is news to Matty

As if there wasn’t enough apathy for golf’s return to the Olympics one of America’s quartet wasn’t actually aware of the format.

Matt Kuchar came to the party when Jordan Spieth withdrew and it emerged at last week’s Travelers Championship that he thought he had signed up for a team competition, the same as World Cups that he had played in.

“I may be misinformed or just don’t know. You may have to help me. Is there no team format at all?” he asked.

“From my understanding it was supposed to be Bubba and Rickie – they were the two highest-seeded Americans. Their combined score I thought was going to be the team part. There is no combination, no team at all? OK.”

Er, no Matty. The competition will be a 72-hole strokeplay, as announced seven years ago. And no team event. Which is all part of the problem.

3) Tiger all over the Ryder Cup

One of the more fascinating parts of Ryder Cup week will be Tiger Woods’ role. The American last played in a tournament a year ago and has since had two back surgeries but his time of late has been well spent in his role of one of Davis Love’s vice-captains.

Woods will be a key tactician, according to Captain Love, and he has already selected his four wildcards, not that Love would reveal them.

“He’s been texting me some pairings and some groupings,” Love said. “He’s put a lot of thought into it and he’s kind of our tactician. He’s probably one of the most prepared guys when he shows up at a golf tournament. He’s already picked his four wildcards.”

And we will see a version of Azinger’s pod system where we might get an idea of who Woods gets along with best of the younger generation of American stars.

“He knows who he wants to watch, who he wants to manage and who he’ll get along well with.”

The United States have lost six of the last seven meetings.

Tiger and Davis Love

 

4) Scotland’s bid almost hit by lack of clubs

In a year of odd stories this was one of the odder stories. Scotland’s leading amateurs were very nearly undone by nine of 10 of their team’s clubs for the European Individual Amateur Championship in Estonia going missing at Amsterdam Airport.

Ryan Lumsden, who flew from England, was fine and Grant Forrest borrowed some clubs from another player, something Liam Johnston was also set to do.

That left seven of the squad having to withdraw from one of the biggest amateur events of the year but then, at 1.30pm, the clubs finally arrived.

Given some of the team were meant to tee off in the morning there were lengthy talks with the European Golf Association and they were then all allowed to play, six of them in the last two groups of the day.

A weather delay of almost two hours also helped their cause.

National Coach Ian Rae said on Thursday: “It’s the strangest thing I’ve seen in my whole career, with all nine sets of clubs not turning up, so we have no clubs, shoes, balls or waterproofs.

“If you lose two sets from nine then that is bad, but nine is just nonsense. It’s absolutely bizarre.”

At the end of a strange week Scotland had two players in the top five, with Robert MacIntyre in fourth and Conor Syme fifth.

5) Bjorn bottles it

Have a look at this. Thomas Bjorn was taking part in this little curtain-raiser at Archerfield when this happened.

He didn’t win a car but might have celebrated with the bottle in question..

 

Read more

Furyk makes PGA Tour history with 58

Wall ends lengthy wait for victory

 

Mark Townsend

Been watching and playing golf since the early 80s and generally still stuck in this period. Huge fan of all things Robert Rock, less so white belts. Handicap of 8, fragile mind and short game

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