Tiger Woods was unable to take part in the 2021 Ryder Cup as he recovers from the car crash he was involved in early this year, but the 15-time major champion’s presence was felt early on at Whistling Straits.
Xander Schauffele and Patrick Cantlay had the most surprising performance of the morning foursomes on Friday, as the duo dominated Rory McIlroy and Ian Poulter with a 5-and-3 win. Schauffele told the Golf Channel that he and Cantlay received advice from Woods on Thursday night and utilized it when the match was tied.
“We got a nice message from Tiger last night,” Schauffele said. “Obviously I’m not gonna reveal what it said, but Pat and I referred to it a few times today. We knew what we needed to do. … We knew he was fist-pumping from the couch. Whether he was on crutches or not, he was as fired up as anyone back home. It’s nice to have his support.”
Cantlay, who like Schauffele is a Ryder Cup rookie, said he met with Tiger recently to discuss what it’s like playing in the event.
“There’s no better role model, no better leader. He’s just somebody you can learn from,” Cantlay said. “I saw him last week at home and just picked his brain on the Ryder Cup and applied some of that today.”
Tiger was in a serious car crash back in February. He had multiple led fractures and damage to his feet and ankles. There were initially questions about whether he would ever golf again, but U.S. Ryder Cup captain Steve Stricker offered a promising update on Woods’ condition this week.
The United States racked up the most gold medals at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, as well as the most overall medals. The country can thank the two golf winners for adding to the gold medal total.
Xander Schauffele won the gold medal in men’s gold at the Olympics, while Nelly Korda came through to win the gold on the women’s side.
Schauffele gave Korda a nod by tweeting a photo of her on Saturday and commenting on her gold medal-winning pose.
Here’s the side-by-side of their photos:
Korda, 23, is asserting herself as the best female golfer in the world. She won the women’s PGA Championship this year and the gold medal, while being ranked No. 1 in the world.
As for Schauffele, he famously struggled to win a major. Maybe the gold medal win is the boost his golf career needed.
Xander Schauffele had a rollercoaster of a final round at the Masters on Sunday, and the mistake he made on the 16th hole will likely haunt him for a very long time.
Hideki Matsuyama looked like he was going to cruise to a relaxing victory before he put his second shot into the water on the 15th hole. He made bogey, and Schauffele took advantage with a birdie on the par-5 to cut Matsuyama’s lead to just two strokes with three holes remaining. The pressure suddenly looked like it was on Matsuyama, but Schauffele was the one who felt it on the 16th tee.
Schauffele put his tee shot in the water on 16, which is always a fairly easy par-3 hole on Sunday at the Masters.
To make matters worse, Schauffele then re-teed and hit his third shot way over the back of the green. He ended up with a triple-bogey, which was his first ever in a major. Schauffele had previously gone 1,041 holes in majors without a triple-bogey.
Matsuyama bogeyed to go to 11-under, but Schauffele still fell two shots further off the lead with the disaster.
Water always seems to come into play on the back nine at the Masters. We even saw that with Tiger Woods last year (video here) as he was trying to win back-to-back green jackets.
It’s going to take Schauffele a while to get over that.
Patrick Reed may have captured victory at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, Calif. on Sunday, but he may not have too much respect from his fellow golfers.
The comments from some fellow golfers were not positive about Reed due to winner’s actions on the 10th hole Saturday. Reed moved a ball he believed to be embedded prior to talking with a rules official.
Xander Schauffele, who finished tied for second at five back, says he would have done things differently from Reed.
“I would wait for an official. He did everything by the book according to the official and everyone stood by there,” Schauffele said.
Schauffele also said the talk about Reed wasn’t great.
“The talk amongst the boys isn’t great, I guess, but he’s protected by the Tour and that’s all that matters, I guess.”
Reed has had similar incidents in the past, which is why he doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt anymore. Even CBS announcer Jim Nantz came close to calling out Reed.
Xander Schauffele is not used to having many of his shots in major championships shown on television, and the 24-year-old proved that with the way he reacted to one of them during the final round of The Open Championship on Sunday.
Schauffele, who held the lead for much of the day, hit an approach shot on the 15th hole that he was not pleased about. As he watched the ball sail beyond the flag, he couldn’t help but let an S-bomb fly.
It didn’t cost Schauffele, as he went on to make par. But if his play at Carnoustie is any indication of what’s to come, he should get used to having to watch what he says when the cameras are rolling.
Fans in the gallery yelling out things upon golfers teeing off is nothing new, but what one bellowed during Saturday’s US Open certainly was.
As Xander Schauffele teed off on the first hole at Erin Hills in the third round Saturday, one fan yelled out, “X gonna give it to ya!”
That is a reference to the famous DMX song, “X Gon’ Give It To Ya.”
Hopefully Schauffele appreciated the support. The fans got a kick out of it, and announcer Joe Buck even seemed to chuckle.