This Week in Golf – June 10th through June 13th

June 9, 2010

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PGA TOUR
ST. JUDE CLASSIC
TPC Southwind, Memphis, Tennessee

Brian Gay earned a trip to the U.S. Open with his five-shot victory at last year’s St. Jude Classic — his second dominant win in two months.

Gay carded a four-under 66 in the final round and finished the tournament with an 18-under 262, easily beating runners-up David Toms and Bryce Molder to capture his third PGA Tour win.

[Brian Gay]
Brian Gay finished last year’s St. Jude Classic with an 18-under 262 for his his third PGA Tour win.
Eight weeks earlier, Gay cruised to a 10-shot win at the Heritage. All the momentum didn’t help him at the U.S. Open, however, as he went on to miss the cut at Bethpage Black.

The St. Jude Classic will serve as the final tune-up for the U.S. Open for the fourth year in a row. Many of the top players — including world Nos. 1 and 2 Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson — are taking the week off to practice and rest.

But there will still be a good showing in Memphis this year.

Led by Englishmen Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter — the No. 3 and No. 6 golfers in the world — there will be 10 players from the top-25 at the TPC Southwind.

Gay will lead a list of the former champions, which also includes two-time winners Justin Leonard (2005, 2008) and Toms (2003-04) as well as Woody Austin (2007), Jeff Maggert (2006), Len Mattiace (2002) and Bob Estes (2001).

John Daly will also be in the field for a PGA Tour event for the 11th time this season. Daly, who returned from a six-month suspension at last year’s St. Jude, hasn’t finished better than tied for 24th this year.

Golf Channel will have coverage of the first two rounds from 3-6 p.m. (et), while CBS will broadcast the final two rounds in the same time slot.

Lucas Glover will be the defending champion at next week’s U.S. Open after winning last year’s rain-soaked major in a Monday finish at Bethpage Black. The championship will be staged at Pebble Beach for the first time since Woods’ historic 15-shot victory in 2000, when he led from start to finish and was the only player under par after four rounds.
LPGA TOUR
STATE FARM CLASSIC
Panther Creek Country Club, Springfield, Illinois

The LPGA Tour is back from a two-week break for its first official tournament since Sun Young Yoo won the Sybase Match Play Championship on May 23.

In-Kyung Kim won last year’s State Farm Classic with a seven-under 65 in the final round, beating Hall of Famer Se Ri Pak by a shot at 17-under 271. It marked Kim second career victory on the LPGA Tour.

Kim, who is No. 12 in the world rankings, will be back to defend a title as she leads a field that includes 18 of the top 25 players in women’s golf, including Nos. 1 and 2 Jiyai Shin and Ai Miyazato and No. 7 Michelle Wie.

No. 3 Suzann Pettersen is the only player ranked in the top 12 who will not be in the field. Another notable exception is the injured Paula Creamer, who hasn’t played since withdrawing from the season-opener in Thailand because of a thumb injury.

Golf Channel will have coverage of all four rounds beginning at 6:30 p.m. (et) on the first three days and a half-hour later on Sunday.

This is the beginning of a five-week stretch of tournaments for the tour, including two majors: the LPGA Championship and U.S. Women’s Open.

Next week is the three-day ShopRite LPGA Classic, which is returning to the LPGA Tour schedule after a three-year absence.
EUROPEAN TOUR
OPEN DE PORTUGAL
Penha Longa Golf Course, Estoril, Portugal

Michael Hoey parred the third playoff hole to defeat Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and win last year’s Open de Portugal.

Hoey got up-and-down for his winning par despite having a restricted backswing on his chip shot because he was near a tree. He holed a six-foot putt, while Fernandez-Cactano missed from nine feet.

It marked the first European Tour win for Hoey, who closed with a five-under 66 in the final round. Fernandez-Castano had a 67 to match him at seven-under par 277, while Francesco Molinari missed the playoff by a shot.

This year’s Open de Portugal was moved from its original dates of April 1-4 to the week before the U.S. Open when the Austrian Golf Open was changed to September, leaving the slot available.

Golf Channel will have coverage of all four rounds beginning at 10:30 a.m. (et) on Thursday and at 9 a.m. on the final three days.

In addition to next week’s U.S. Open, the European Tour schedule also includes the Saint-Omer Open, which was won by Christian Nilsson last year.
UNITED STATES GOLF ASSOCIATION
CURTIS CUP MATCH
Essex County Club, Manchester, Massachusetts

The United States Golf Association begins its packed summer schedule with the biennial Curtis Cup Match between teams from the United States and Great Britain & Ireland.

The U.S. easily won the 2008 title on the Old Course at St. Andrews, rolling to a 13-7 victory. It was the sixth consecutive victory for the Americans, who pushed their all-time record in the series to 26-6-3.

The 2010 U.S. team, named April 12, includes amateur stars Jennifer Song, Alexis Thompson and Kimberly Kim.

The Great Britain & Ireland team includes 15-year-old Irish twins Leona and Lisa Maguire, who will be the youngest GB&I team members ever at the Curtis Cup.

Great Britain & Ireland hasn’t won the championship since 1996.

The USGA schedule continues next week with the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. Lucas Glover is the defending champion, while Tiger Woods won the last Open held at Pebble Beach, a historic 15-shot victory in 2000.


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