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Golf Course News December 2005

Victoria
Thu, 1st Dec 2005
WGC - Algarve World Cup in Portugal Victoria - Algarve - Portugal - 17th to 20th November, 2005 The Welsh Team composed of Stephen Dodd and Bradley Dredge beat both English and Swedish Teams by two strokes. The event had been shortened to just 54 holes due to bad weather. After the opening day better-ball, with England's Luke Donald and David Howell scoring a magnificent 59 - leaving Australia and surprise India team only one stroke behind. The 2nd round, played in the foursomes format (alternate shot), ended in a 3-way tie between Sweden, England and Wales. The Welsh team of Bradley Dredge and Stephen Dodd caught up with birdies on the final four holes, although, England scored three and Sweden two in that home stretch but this finish boosted the Welshmen's confidence. On the third day (which unfortunately turned out to be the last day of play), an eagle two by Bradley Dredge and Stephan Dodd's birdie on the par-five 17th with its semi-island green gave the pair a two shot lead, ahead of England and Sweden. A final round with these three teams battling it out for top spot, followed by a keen chasing pack comprising of France, Denmark, the Netherlands and Argentina, all within a handful of strokes would have been a fitting finale. However, a strong overnight storm that continued until about 11 a.m. on the scheduled last day, plus a poor weather forecast that denied the organizers any chance of a Monday decider. They had to cancel the last round and award the 'World Cup' to the Welsh pair, together with the full prize-money of US$700,000 each and the highest pay cheques they had ever received. Although, also regretting the forced inability to win over the 72 holes they and many other players felt that their victory was well deserved. Among the strong favorites perhaps only Argentina challenged for the leadership. A poor opening round 68 left their team nine strokes behind, but a record-breaking 61 for foursomes play on day two put them into contention only a stroke behind the leaders. Again in the better-ball format they failed to deliver, scoring only 67. Spain (Sergio Garcia and Miguel Angel Jimenez), South Africa (Clark/Immelman), U.S.A (Cink/Z.Johnson), and Australia (Hensby/Lonard) showed only few flashes of their normal brilliance throughout the championship. As the host country Portugal participated with PGA European Tour players, Jose Filipe Lima and Antonio Sobrinho. Their opening rounds of 68 and 72 left them initially trailing badly, but a spirited 3rd round of 63 with six birdies and an eagle in an 8-hole stretch earned them an equal 20th spot and ahead of Colombia and Venezuela.
Vale da Pinta
Thu, 1st Dec 2005
At the Vale de Pinta Course the PGA European Seniors Tour Qualifying School Finals were also affected by storm damage on the opening day but course maintenance staff, aided by many volunteers, made massive efforts to make the course playable. Full cards to play on the 2006 Tour were available for the top six players and conditional ones for a further eleven. It was 56-year-old Aussie, Stewart Ginn who came out on top with a steady 72-hole total of 274 (10 under par), with only 4 dropped shots. Until now Ginn who plays on the US Champions Tour, and winner at the 'Ford Seniors Players Championship' (one of the majors in 2003), he now wants to change his career and succeed on the European Tour. Winning the Q-School is a tonic to Stewart Ginn's aspirations. The other full cards went to Kurt Cox (USA), Bobby Lincoln and Bertus Smit (SA), Stephen Chadwick (Eng), and Rigoberto Velasquez who will turn 50 in September. His place until then will be taken by Angel Fernandez from Chile. Amongst the winners of conditional cards, who were involved in playoffs to secure them, was our Brian Evans the local Pro at Pinheiros Altos.
Morgado
Thu, 1st Dec 2005
The Final of the 'Bader Cup' took place over the Morgado Course, and was won by the Gareth Francis and his fiancee Emily-Kate Brown from the Benton Hall Golf Club in Essex with a better-ball Stableford score of 51 points. They gained their trip to the Algarve, by winning their regional final at Ely City, and competed against 11 other regional final mixed-couple winners throughout the UK. Lady Joan Bader O.B.E. was present at the prize-giving gala dinner. Around 500 golfers take part in the UK regional finals and the funds raised are donated to the 'Douglas Bader Foundation' established in the name of the famed WWII pilot (and golfer) who lost his legs in a flying accident in 1931. The Foundation helps children and adult amputees and others with physical disabilities.
Palmares
Thu, 1st Dec 2005
Palmares Course was the venue of the 1st 'Clube Porto-Mos Tournament' at the end of November organised in conjunction with the Lagos Golf Club which is one of the most popular societies in the western Algarve. A total of 74 players took part in the 18-hole Stableford tournament, and included a golf clinic and putting competition. The veteran teaching Pro, Luis Espadinha, was on hand teaching beginners which including the Lagos Mayor, Dr. Julio Barroso, The main trophy winners were: Overall - Joaquim Silva; 1st Net, Men – Amilcar Fonseca; 1st Net, Ladies – Lurdes Cerol; 1st Gross – Jose Custodio.
Palmares
Thu, 1st Dec 2005
The 'John Aldridge Charity Golf Classic' was played over two days, at the Morgado and Palmares Courses. Now in its 4th year this event has been successful in raising funds of over 70,000 Euros for children's charities in Ireland, Portugal, as well as in John's birthplace being Liverpool. Apart from the host, the Irish international footballer Jim Belgin, the Scots Gary Gillespie and David Speedie, and several other celebrities played in the 16 four-man team event. The Do Ron's team won with 179 points and Amendoeira were second, only two strokes behind. David Speedie took the celebrity prize and Mike Feeley was the overall individual winner.

International Golf News December 2005

Thu, 1st Dec 2005
Bart Bryant won the Tour Championship presented by Coca-Cola with a Tournament record score of 17 under par 263 and a margin of 6 strokes over World Nº One Tiger Woods. This second PGA Tour victory of 2005 took Bryant to Nº 24, a move up of 20 places. Heath Slocum won the Southern Farm Bureau Classic at Annandale Golf Club after a final round of 66 gave him a two stroke margin of victory. Slocum climbed 39 places in the Nº 101. Darren Clarke completed a successful defense of his Mitsui Sumitomo VISA Taiheiyo Masters title at the Taiheiyo Club. A 30-foot eagle putt on the 72nd hole gave Darren Clarke a 2 stroke victory over Mitsuhiro Tateyama and took him up to Nº 19. Tiger Woods won the Dunlop Phoenix Tournament on the Japan Golf Tour for the second successive year after he prevailed on the fourth extra hole on a playoff with Japan’s Kaname Yokoo. Tiger Woods then led Vijay Singh by 7.6 average points whilst Kaname Yokoo climbeds to Nº 170. Bradford Vaughan also successfully defended his title when he won the Limpopo Classic, in South Africa, and now upgraded this year to a full Sunshine Tour Order of Merit event The three stroke victory moved Bradford Vaughan up a massive 670 places to a tied Nº 314. Thaworn Wiratchant won his fourth Asian Tour Event of the year at the Carlsberg Masters Vietnam presented by Thai Airways in Hanoi. Wiratchant became Nº 124, an improvement of 11 places on the week and 97 places since the end of last year. Robert Allenby won the MFS Australian Open at Moonah Links with a final round of 77 and good enough by a stroke to leave John Senden, Nick O'Hern and Paul Sheehan tied in second place. With this Championship being the nominated Flagship Event of the PGA Tour of Australasia, Robert Allenby moved to 60th place in the World Golf Ranking with an improvement of 23 places. Toru Taniguchi won the Casio World Open on the Japan Golf Tour and moved into the World Top 100 in 99th place, a climb of 35 places. Robert Allenby repeated the feat achieved by Peter Lonard last year by winning the Cadbury Schweppes Centenary Australian PGA Championship the week after winning the MFS Australian Open Championship. This latest victory took Allenby back into the World Top 50 in 47th position, and an improvement of 13 places. Yasuharu Imano won the Golf Nippon Series JT Cup on the Japan Golf Tour and moved into the World Top 100 in 98th place, a climb up of 34 places.

Golfers in the News December 2005

Thu, 1st Dec 2005
David Howell - (England) HSBC Champions Sheshan International - Shanghai - China -10th to 13th November, 2005 With three strokes in hand David Howell form England captured victory at the HSBC Champions in Shanghai on the European Tour. His nearest rival was Tiger Woods from the USA.
Thu, 1st Dec 2005
Paul Casey - (England) Volvo China Open Shenzhen - Shenzhen - China - 24th to 27th November, 2005 Paul Casey won in China for the second time this year as he surged through the field with a final round of 65, then defeated Oliver Wilson at the first hole of a sudden death playoff to win the Volvo China Open. Paul Casey broke back into the Top 50 in Nº 49 place, a move up of 12 places.

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