Monday 3 November 2008

2008 - Week 50 Winners

The weather played havoc on both sides of the Atlantic, particularly on the European side where the season ending event, the Volvo Masters, was in danger of ending in farce. The European Tour's idiotic scheduling means that the 2009 season starts this Thursday in Shanghai. This meant a large portion of the field could not play today (Monday) in the event of a weather delay, which almost came to pass. This looked like reducing the flagship tournament to 54 (or even 36 holes) at one stage. Shoddy treatment for Volvo, one of the Tour's biggest supporters for many years. Why they could not have delayed the Chinese event for a week or two, we don't know. There's even a 2 week gap in the schedule after the event this week. Roll on 2010, when common sense finally comes to the European season.

In the end, they managed to fit all four rounds in and Soren Kjeldsen (ranked 13th by Golf Predictor) led from start to finish to claim an impressive victory. We had a small punt on Jimenez and Stenson to finish in the top 10, but the weather turned the event into a lottery. Jimenez was particularly unlucky, having been caught in the very worst of it and bled seven shots in four holes. Had he not lost those seven shots, he would have made it! The race for the Order of Merit petered out somewhat in the final round, but we are delighted that "our man", Robert Karlsson, triumphed in the end. Karlsson has had a brilliant season and thoroughly deserved to win.

In America, Ryan Palmer (ranked 13th by Golf Predictor) birdied the last to break out a large group and take his virst tour victory for 4 years in the Ginn sur Mer Classic. It was a triumph for sportsmanship too, as Palmer had called a penalty on himself on the 10th green when his ball moved as he addressed it. Performance of the week must go to Jeff Overton, who finished 18th just 2 weeks after an appendix operation. Now that's what we call determination to keep your card!

The Fall Series (or should that be "Desperado Series"?!) of US events with weak fields trying to maintain playing rights ends this week at the Disney Resort.

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