I am surprised that the Matchplay at Dove Mountian Arizona should be experiencing sponsorship problems with Accenure pulling out. It’s true that Tiger Woods, now really a spent force, Phil Mickelson and Adam Scott pulled out. Matchplay offers the head to head excitement, when the very best go mano and mano, and is of more of a contest than the more percentage stroke play over 4 rounds. The 4 semi finalists are Jason Day, Ernie Els, Victor Dubuisson and Ricky Fowler. I watched the game between Sergio Garcia and Fowler and it was enthralling. Sergio dominated, but not for the first time was let down by his flat stick, missing two very sinkable putts in the back nine. Fowler a young dashing player with a colourful dress sense (he frequently wears a tangerine outfit) and in this game had primrose matching cap and shoes, played some exhilirating golf to win on the final hole. On the 7th hole, though Sergio had a shorter putt to sink than Fowler, he conceded a half. One wonders what Ryder Cup captain McGinlay would made of this. Sergio sportingly said he took too long over a drop and felt morally he should offer his opponent the half.
The tourney has matched youth v experience in Els v Spieth, Dubuisson v McDowell and Garcia v Fowler. Generally the younger men won, perhaps because they are more risk positive. It’s also a most useful rehearsal for Ryder Cup selection for the Captain’s picks not based on tour ratings.