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The full list of where you could see Tiger Woods play golf in 2020

In the aftermath of the U.S. Presidents Cup victory on Sunday, a reporter asked Tiger Woods — with tongue firmly planted in cheek — if he would mind going over his 2020 schedule through the Masters.

After a moment of consternation, Woods broke into a wide grin, dropped a good-natured riff and moved on. Of course, he was never going to divulge what he’s doing next week, let alone in the coming months. But it was worth a shot.

And so is trying to figure out where he will play next, how many tournaments his schedule will entail and where he will visit.

Coming off a Masters victory for his 15th major title, his Zozo Championship win for his 82nd PGA Tour victory to tie Sam Snead’s record and a successful year-end run at the Hero World Challenge and the Presidents Cup, expectations might be even higher than they were to begin 2019. Woods will end the year ranked seventh in the world.

And given the way Woods has looked since August knee surgery, there is considerable reason for optimism.

Before delving into some educated guesses as to where Woods will play in 2020, there are some obvious predictions.

  • The schedule is built around the majors. Getting in the correct number of starts before the Masters, and then the PGA Championship (at Harding Park), the U.S. Open (at Winged Foot) and The Open (at Royal St. George’s) will be part of the decision-making.
  • The Olympics add a new wrinkle. Whenever asked, Woods has made it clear he’d love a shot at what likely will be his only Olympic Games, to be played two weeks following The Open, in Japan in early August. To qualify, he must be among the top four Americans as of June 22.
  • He will play more. Woods — who turns 44 on Dec. 30 — competed in just 14 PGA Tour events during the 2019 season, mostly due to injury. He skipped some starts he might otherwise have played. With the Japan tourney counting, expect that number to be around 18.
  • Balancing competition and proper preparation. After the Masters this year, Woods did not play before the PGA Championship, and it showed. He did not play an event between the U.S. Open and The Open. While it is unlikely he will play back-to-back weeks more than twice, you can expect him to add a tournament or two he did not play in order to be better prepared for the majors.

With that, here is what appears likely for 2020, with a few thoughts on tournaments that have been kicked around as well.

Sentry Tournament of Champions (Jan. 2-5)

This seems an extreme reach, but we mention it because Woods is eligible and there are some compelling reasons to play. Small fields are his friend, as are no-cut events. And given that it’s only two weeks away and his game is in form, you could see him going to Hawai’i and winning. But of course, the fact that the tournament is in two weeks and right after a hectic stretch, and with the holidays mixed in, makes it a long shot. Woods most recently played the event in 2005.

Farmers Insurance Open (Jan. 23-26)

This makes sense as the place to begin the new year. Woods has won eight times at Torrey Pines and on several occasions has made this his launching point. It also gives him five weeks to decompress and build back up.

Genesis Invitational (Feb. 13-16)

Woods has already committed to the Los Angeles event that is run by his foundation, and it’s now one that has similar status to the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the Memorial. Woods tied for 15th in 2009 despite numerous delays and cold weather.

WGC-Mexico Championship (Feb. 20-23)

The only thing standing in the way is if Woods decides he’d rather play his hometown Honda Classic the following week. Don’t look for him to play three in a row at any point. But Mexico offers several advantages. The WGC short field and automatic ranking points are key. And he tied for 10th in 2019 despite a poor week of putting.

Arnold Palmer Invitational (March 5-8)

Even if Woods skips Mexico, playing Honda would mean three consecutive tournaments, with the Arnold Palmer and the Players Championship to follow. Woods skipped the event he’s won eight times due to a neck strain in 2019. Unless he is determined to mirror his 2019 schedule, it’s difficult to see him skipping this tournament.

Players Championship (March 12-15)

The new schedule unveiled in 2019 meant a move of the Players to March and Woods skipping two tournaments he played in 2018, the Honda Classic and the Valspar Championship. If healthy, he’s not missing the Players.

WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship (March 26-29)

Woods made it to the quarterfinals last year after a memorable match-play victory over Rory McIlroy. The WGC format and automatic ranking points seemingly make this Texas event a slam dunk, as it is two weeks prior to the Masters, a time when he likes to play.

The Masters (April 9-12)

Woods is looking at giving himself six starts before the Masters, one more than in 2019. He would play twice in consecutive weeks but just once in the three weeks leading up to the tournament, with time to make a visit to Augusta National.

Wells Fargo Championship (April 30-May 3)

We got this one wrong last year, as did many others who figured Woods would want a start between major championships. The emotional toll from the Masters victory kept him at home rather than in North Carolina, but the lack of preparation for the PGA Championship resulted in a missed cut.

PGA Championship (May 14-17)

Woods won the 2005 WGC-American Express Championship at Harding Park and went 5-0 in the 2009 Presidents Cup there. He’ll be hoping for some warmer temperatures in San Francisco than he had at Bethpage in 2019, when he missed the cut at the PGA.

The Memorial (June 4-7)

No reason to skip Jack Nicklaus’ tournament in Ohio. In one of just six post-Masters starts through the FedEx Cup playoffs, the tie for ninth in 2019 was his best.

U.S. Open (June 18-21)

New York’s Winged Foot is the site of Woods’ first cut in a major as a pro, in 2006. It was his first event following the death of his father, Earl, approximately a month earlier.

WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational (July 2-5)

Woods skipped this Tennessee tournament in 2019 when it was played the week following The Open. He is more likely to play it this time, to give himself a start between the U.S. Open and The Open. Possible glitch: if he makes the Olympic field.

The Open (July 16-19)

In Woods’ only appearance at Royal St. George’s, in 2003, he had a lost ball on the first hole, ended up making a triple-bogey 7 and finished two shots back of winner Ben Curtis in England.

Olympic golf tournament (July 30-Aug. 2)

Woods continues to say that he would love to play in the Olympics. To do so, he will need to be ranked among the top four Americans not outside the top 15 as of the June 22 cutoff. At seventh in the world, he is currently the fourth American, behind Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Dustin Johnson. It’s hard to see the first two going anywhere. So Woods is effectively fighting for two spots with Johnson, Patrick Cantlay, Xander Schauffele, Webb Simpson, Patrick Reed and Bryson DeChambeau. With two major championships, the Players and two WGCs prior to the cutoff, there is a lot that can happen.

The Northern Trust (Aug. 13-16)

The first of three playoff events shifts to TPC Boston, and the only reason for Woods to skip it is if he needs a break after the Olympics and doesn’t want to play three in a row in the playoffs.

BMW Championship (Aug. 20-23)

The tournament moves to Olympia Fields, where Woods tied for 20th at the 2003 U.S. Open in his only time playing the Illinois venue.

Tour Championship (Aug. 27-30)

After missing this event in 2019 after winning it a year earlier, you have to figure it is a priority for Woods to make it back to Atlanta.

Final notes

If you include the Zozo Championship he won in October, that is 18 official PGA Tour events. That doesn’t include the Olympics, and if Woods makes it to Tokyo, expect there to be some juggling to bring the total down by an event or two. All of this, of course, is subject to health and fitness.

As for the fall of 2020, after the PGA Tour season has concluded, there is the potential for the Ryder Cup (Woods is currently fourth in the U.S. standings with a very limited number of events counting), a possible title defense in Japan, with some sort of made-for-TV event added in again, and the Hero World Challenge.

SOURCE:  ESPN

The 9 most interesting golf equipment stories of 2019

Any time a year comes to its conclusion it offers the opportunity to reflect on what occurred over the preceding 12 months. As it relates to the golf equipment scene on the professional tours, 2019 had no shortage of newsworthy stories. Hot drivers and the methods used to test them continued to be a controversial topic, specifically at the Open Championship where there was a visible split between some tour players and the governing bodies over the protocols used. Spicy drivers, however, were only a fraction of the equipment news. Players breaking clubs, losing clubs, using too many golf balls or not having enough of them caused confusion and consternation among those involved. And then there were the numerous equipment escapades of the “Golf Scientist,” Bryson DeChambeau. With that, here’s a look at our top golf equipment stories of 2019.

Driver testing at the Open Championship
Driver testing is a behind-the-scenes process that is usually a non-event. That changed when a handful of the 30 players who had their clubs tested prior to the Open Championship at Royal Portrush in July saw some fail the test. Among those players was Xander Schauffele, who went public with his displeasure at the process. Schauffele’s beef that it was selective and needed more discretion was legitimate, but the testing brought to light the fact that some drivers being used on tour that were originally “legal” were unintentionally becoming nonconforming over time due to usage. Soon thereafter the PGA Tour implemented mandatory driver testing at several events, with a few drivers caught speeding at the Safeway Open. To what extent there is an issue remains to be seen, but it’s a story to follow in 2020.

Bryson DeChambeau’s many changes
You can’t have a list of top equipment stories without Bryson DeChambeau. Normally known for having all his irons the length of a 7-iron, DeChambeau became more focused on other aspects of his equipment in 2019. At the WGC-Mexico Championship, DeChambeau changed to Bridgestone’s Tour B XS ball and waxed on about the effect of atmospheric conditions on a golf ball. Prior to the Masters, he changed all the shafts in his irons and wedges. Later in the year, at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, he put graphite shafts in all 14 clubs, which is believed to be a first for a PGA Tour player. Finally, at the Hero World Challenge, DeChambeau put into play a 4.8-degree driver. And what about the One Length irons? They hardly got a mention with everything else going on.

Bryson DeChambeau
David Cannon

Eddie Pepperell running out of golf balls
OK, we’ve all been there. Out on the course enduring a rough patch and worrying about running out of ammo. Heck, Tiger Woods nearly did it at the 2000 U.S. Open. Unfortunately for Eddie Pepperell, the worst fears actually came true during the third round of the Turkish Airlines Open in November. In rapid fashion, Pepperell launched balls into a pond until his bag was empty, and he was ultimately disqualified. Said playing companion Martin Kaymer, “Eddie hit his shots to the green, then came over to tell us he had run out of balls. He did not ask if he could borrow one [allowable if the same model]. It did not look like he wanted to play. He did not putt with his putter on the third hole; he putted with a wedge. So there was a lot happening. I have never seen anything like that before. I only watched it on television, in ‘Tin Cup.’ This is the first time I have seen it live.” Us, too.

RELATED: The 21 (yes, 21!) most painful rules incidents of 2019

Russell Henley runs afoul of the one-ball rule
While Pepperell was DQ’d for not having enough golf balls, Russell Henley got an eight-stroke penalty for using too many. After the second round of the Mayakoba Golf Classic in October, Henley dug into his bag to get a few balls to sign and hand out to fans. In doing so, he noticed he had accidentally used a ball other than a Titleist Pro V1x during his round—a no-no under the PGA Tour’s one-ball rule that requires a player use the same make and model of ball throughout a round. Henley went to a rules official and explained he had used the different ball for four holes. The penalty: two strokes for each hole, turning his 69 into a 77 and a missed cut.

Steve Stricker’s venerable sticks, unusual endorsement deal
Steve Stricker went back in time—in golf equipment terms, way back in time—in putting his old Titleist 755 Forged irons, a set that debuted in 2006, in the bag at the Memorial. Stricker used the clubs a few weeks later to win the U.S. Senior Open, saying, “I’ve been trying to find some clubs and equipment that I like, and so I went back to an old set that feels really good. That’s part of it, too, I think. I’m swinging at it a little bit more confidently, feeling good with what I have in my hand.” Stricker’s putter is a golf artifact as well, an Odyssey White Hot 2 he first played at the 2006 Shell Houston Open. Two days after winning the Senior Open, Stricker signed one of the most unusual endorsement deals in golf with Odyssey. The pact called for no signage on his hat, bag or anywhere for that matter. Just that he continue to use a putter nearly 15 years old, which is right up his alley.

Steve Stricker
Stacy Revere

Harold Varner busted for assembling his driver on course
Harold Varner’s Players Championship got off to a rough start when, prior to his opening round, his driver cracked on the practice range. As such, Varner started his round with 13 clubs and intended to have another driver brought out to him, allowable under the rules. But Varner wanted to use the same shaft that was in his gamer. This too is allowable so long as the assembly of the club takes place off the course. That’s where things went wrong. After leaving the shaft back at the tee, hoping to have his agent pick it up and assemble the club before bringing it out to him, a walking scorer took the shaft out to Varner on the course. When the driver head was brought out, too, the club was assembled on the course in violation of the rule, costing Varner a two-shot penalty.

RELATED: Golf World’s Newsmakers of the Year for 2019

Tommy Fleetwod’s eBay bargain putter
Like most golfers going through a rough stretch on the greens, Tommy Fleetwood was ready for a putter change at the Omega European Masters in September. The new putter, however, turned out to be an old putter that his caddie, Ian Finnis, purchased off eBay for £90 ($109) in January. It was a birthday gift for Fleetwood, who used a similar model growing up. Fleetwood put the Odyssey DFX 2-Ball Blade in play and needed just 21 putts in the opening round. He continued to play well the rest of the week, finishing T-8 to earn the equivalent of £45,674—a pretty good return on Finnis’ original investment.

Tommy Fleetwood
Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

Patrick Reed snapping wedge over his knee at the U.S. Open
Varner’s broken driver was an accident. Patrick Reed’s demolition of a wedge at the U.S. Open was intentional for all the world to see. On the final hole of his second round at Pebble Beach, Reed hit a pitch shot long from behind the green then flubbed his next shot. That’s when Reed went full Bo Jackson (or Henrik Stenson) and snapped the shaft of the wedge over his knee. Reed somehow went on to get the next shot close enough to make the putt for double bogey and make the cut, but he needed a new wedge for the weekend.

FOX Sports: Golf

@GolfonFOX

Patrick Reed snaps his club over his leg on No. 18… 😳

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Lost clubs of LPGA Tour players
It was a rough year for the transport of clubs used by LPGA Tour players. In February, en route to the Honda LPGA in Thailand, a number of players including Paula Creamer, Sandra Gal, Jodi Ewart Shadoff and Brittany Lincicome had their sticks fail to get to their destination on a Cathay Pacific flight. In March, In-Kyung Kim learned her missing clubs were actually up for sale on eBay after supposedly being lost on an American Airlines flight. In July, Ryann O’Toole’s clubs failed to make it to France for the Evian Championship. When pleading her case to a British Airways agent, the agent ignorantly asked, “Can’t you just use a rental set?” And in September, two Solheim Cup players, Angel Yin and Shadoff (tough year for her) had airlines lose their fully-loaded travel bags. Luckily all the players were eventually reunited with their clubs.

SOURCE:  GolfDigest

Join us for a Battle of the Sexes!
Saturday, January 18th
8:30 am shotgun
  • $10 entry fee per person to cover lunch at Turnpike Mikes – basic drinks included, cash bar available for alcoholic beverages
  • No prizes just bragging rights for the year and possession of the World Famous Boot goes to the losing team.
  • Format – Average Net score of the Men versus the Average Net score of the Women
  • Women will play from the red (or purple) tees and the men will play from the white (or green) tees if so, designated in the handicap system.
  • Create your own foursome or Sign up to play with whomever you like
  • The difference between the course rating for the white tees (men) (65.1) and the red tees (women) (66.4) is .7 strokes which will be deducted from the final average score of the women