Rain ends play with Els in trouble
Ernie Els’s bid for another back-to-back victory on the US PGA Tour will have to wait another day. Rain has seen to that.
Ernie Els will have to wait another day before he can claim another back-to-back victory on the US PGA Tour. Lightening, thunder and heavy rain at Bay Hill made sure of that on Sunday.
In the meantime the ‘Big Easy’ may have to face an uneasy night after seeing his five-stroke lead and regal march to victory at the Arnold Palmer Invitational suddenly cut to just two shots by a tenacious USA-based Korean Kevin Na and a chasing pack just one shot further back that included fellow South African Retief Goosen and Americans Ben Curtis and Chris Couch.
The three hours of rain that halted play with the final group needing to play four more holes hardly cooled off a hot-under-the-collar Els whose serene cruise to victory with a lead of five shots suddenly ended with a double bogey at the unlucky 13th where he found water and then sand.
Els, who had turned at two-under 34 and added further birdies at the 10th and 12 to look unstoppable, followed that 13th-hole disaster with another bogey at 14 – and suddenly he was just two shots in front at 11-under with four holes to play – and looking decidedly shaky
“Obviously, I’m not totally at ease with myself right now,” Els said afterwards. “I’m a little angry or disappointed or whatever you want to call it. There’s still work out there to be done, and I’ve got to get it done. I’ve basically got to go out there and play hard tomorrow morning on the last four holes; as good as I can.”
Na, who has never won on the PGA Tour, was, meanwhile, showing the kind form that brought him rounds of 68 and 70 on Thursday and Friday before Saturday’s 72.
Two birdies and a bogey gave him a 35 at the turn and birdies at the 11th and 12th had helped reel in a floundering Els when the siren ended play for the day.
Perhaps the rain break is a godsend for Els. It will give him time to compose himself and get back to playing the outstanding golf he had been doing before he ran into trouble
After a further inspection today, the final round is to resume at noon (local time) in the first Monday finish at Bay Hill since 1982.
Luke Donald expects Europe to be Ryder Cup underdogs despite home dominance
The United States cruised to a record 19-9 victory at Whistling Straits in 2021.
England’s Charley Hull triumphs in Texas to end six-year wait for LPGA title
The victory was the 26-year-old’s first on the LPGA Tour since prevailing at the CME Group Tour Championship in November 2016.
Ryan Fox remembers Shane Warne after St Andrews success
The New Zealander secured his third DP World Tour title in front of his family with a one-shot victory at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
Romain Langasque equals course record to lead Alfred Dunhill Links Championship
The Frenchman recovered from an early bogey with two eagles and eight birdies to reach 11 under par.
Rory McIlroy bemoans ‘ugly year’ and seeks solution to divide in golf world
The arrival of Saudi-backed LIV Golf series has fractured the game in 2022.
On this day in 2014 – Europe retain Ryder Cup with Gleneagles victory
The Gleneagles victory was Europe’s eighth win in 10 matches.
‘Is this where I am going to die?’ Nicolas Colsaerts on kidney disorder battle
The Belgian is the focus of attention this week as he belatedly defends the Cazoo Open de France title he won three years ago.
On this day in 2008: Ryder Cup misery in Louisville for Nick Faldo’s Europe team
Faldo was heavily criticised for his tactics in the closing singles.
Open champion Cameron Smith wins first LIV trophy in just second start
The world number two is the highest-ranked player to join the rebel series.
Robert MacIntyre beats Matt Fitzpatrick in play-off to win Italian Open
MacIntyre birdied the first extra hole at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club, the venue for next year’s Ryder Cup.