Both the Nordea Masters and the Memorial were won by Swedes, Alex Noren by 4 shots and David Lingmerth after a 3 hole play off with Justin Rose.
Aside from Henrik Stensen, Sweden does not have too many household names in golf but have a whole raft of players like Farrh, Blixt and Magnus Carlsson who feature regularly in the mix. Sadly Noren has not been one of those with tendinitis these past two years.
Whilst Noren won his first competition in two years comfortably, the Memorial – a course designed by Jack Nicklaus – proved a much tighter contest. Francisco Molinari looked likely until he hit the water. Justin Rose was let down by his chipping but his putting under pressure was steely. The Swede Lingmerth did not seem overawed. The only Steve Palmer pick in either tourney – Hiduki Matsuyama – double bogeyed the 15th but made two more birdies to share fifth spot.
We have been commentating recently on commentators and I was irritated by Mark Roe and Wayne Riley on Sky. I very much enjoy Jim Nantz and the Americans though Sir Nick Faldo is not as funny as he thinks he is. We had for the final round the ebullient New Zealander Wayne Riley, Rick Beam, and the rather dour Mark Roe. Twice Rose had simple putts which the gloomy Roe in his nasal Brummie tones thought he might miss. He holed them simply and Riley had to say “I have never known Rose to miss those”. Rose is my favourite golfer and a terrific sportsman. On the 18th his wayward shot struck a spectator, felling him. Before the play-off he went to the spectator to ensure he was alright and gave him his glove. He was also put off by someone shouting at the top of his back-swing. It’s rare that such gross behaviour occurs and I hope they find and expel the culprit.
And what about Tiger, who finished 29 shots behind the leader? No chance of a comeback here and perhaps the time to free up his mind from the endless coaching of his swing. He is not always the most appealing of sorts and but it would be great sport to see the Tiger confront and compete with the young cubs Jordan Spieth and Rory Mcilroy.
Rex already referred to my Juve bet. It all worked out so well with Juve already home and hosed as finalist and me backing Barca to win the match and trophy. I was on Rose and Matsuyama but the Pargiter pot was increased by mere pennies with Matsuyama’s shared fifth placing.