Accenture Match Play: Day 1 match recaps
Check out the details of completed matches in Wednesday's opening round from Dove Mountain
February 19, 2014
By D.J. Piehowski and Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
Check out the details of completed matches in Wednesday's opening round from Dove Mountain
MARANA, Ariz. -- Thirty-two matches were scheduled for Wednesday's opening round of the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship. It's one of the most topsy-turvy days of the PGA TOUR season, and, as always, upsets were in abundance. To see the bracket, click here and for individual player scorecards, click on the name below.
BOBBY JONES BRACKET
HENRIK STENSON, Sweden, def. KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT, Thailand, 2 and 1
Recap: Despite being a past champion, Henrik Stenson hasn't advanced out of the first round since 2008. That changed Wednesday, as he birdied 16 and 17 to take his first lead of the back nine and improve his record to 16-3. An ominous stat for Stenson fans to consider: The No. 1 overall seed hasn't advanced past Round 2 since 2008.
Quotable: "I'm still in shock," Stenson sarcastically said of winning his first match at The Golf Club at Dove Mountain. "It was a tough match. I mean, Kiradech is a good player."
Next opponent: Louis Oosthuizen (Jones bracket)
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN, South Africa def. NICK WATNEY, USA, 1 up
Recap: Oosthuizen made a clutch par-saver from 7 feet at the last hole to close out Watney, who made it to Round 3 in both 2011 and 2012 at the Match Play. Oosthuizen, who is fresh off a win at the Volvo Golf Champions, made six birdies, including one at 17 that helped keep a charging Watney at bay (he birdied 15, 16 and 17). The win improved Oosthuizen's record to 3-4 and moved him out of the first round for the third consecutive year.
Next opponent: Henrik Stenson (Jones bracket)
BRANDT SNEDEKER, USA, def. DAVID LYNN, England, 20 holes
Recap: Snedeker didn't lead in this match until he made a 9-footer for birdie on 20th hole to win the whole shebang. Lynn went 2 up early with consecutive birdies at Nos. 2 and 3 before losing the fifth hole when Snedeker made a 13-footer. So the match went to the back nine with Lynn leading 1 up and he added to that lead with a birdie at the 13th hole. Snedeker drained a 17-footer for birdie at the 14th hole to cut into that advantage and the match was square when Lynn missed the green at No. 17 and made bogey to send the match into extra holes. Interestingly, Lynn suffered a first-round loss last year to the man Snedeker now plays in the second, Webb Simpson.
Quotable: "I played a great stretch of golf in there and a bad stretch, and I've just got to eliminate the bad stretch," Snedeker said. "Did a good job of hitting quality shots on the last four or five holes, made some good putts, got some up and downs when I needed to. You're going to have matches where you don't play good and you survive. I did that today."
Next opponent: Webb Simpson (Jones bracket)
WEBB SIMPSON, USA def. THONGCHAI JAIDEE, Thailand, 3 and 2
Recap: Simpson was 3 under in his match with the Thai veteran, who had three birdies and three bogeys. Jaidee held the upper hand early, winning the second and fourth holes with birdies before the steady Simpson squared the match with pars at Nos. 5 and 7. The American made an 11-footer at the ninth hole, his second straight birdie, to head to the back nine 1 up. After Jaidee's adventure in the desert at the 10th hole, Simpson led by two and he went 3 up at the 13th with a two-putt birdie, then parred out for the win.
Next opponent: Brandt Snedeker (Jones bracket)
JASON DAY, Australia def. THORBJORN OLESEN, Denmark, 2 up
Recap: The second-seeded Day didn't make a bogey in beating the plucky Olesen, who was making his Accenture Match Play Championship debut. The Dane drew first blood with a birdie at the fourth hole and maintained that lead unti Day made a 6-footer at No. 8 to square the match. Consecutive birdies at Nos. 11 and 12 put the Aussie 2 up before the two combatants traded wins over the next six holes and Day ended the proceedings with a 4-footer at the 18th hole after Olesen missed his attempt to square the match from 28 feet.
Quotable: "Today was more of a mental grind for me, just to get through the round," Day said. "I played as good as I could."
Next Opponent: Billy Horschel (Jones backet)
BILLY HORSCHEL, USA def. JAMIE DONALDSON, Wales, 6 and 5
Recap: Horschel, a 10th seed, is one of the most emotional players in the field this week. Too bad his match was over before we got to see any of it. Horschel made six birdies and zero bogeys in 13 holes en route to a steamroll of the 7th-seeded Donaldson.
Quotable: "Played really well today," Horschel said. "Made no bogeys And it's match play, anything can happen. Jamie hit a couple of wayward shots and I was able to take advantage of it."
Next opponent: Jason Day (Jones bracket)
GEORGE COETZEE, South Africa def. STEVE STRICKER, USA, 3 and 1
Recap: There was some question as to whether Stricker would play this week. He showed up, but his stay wasn't long. After a sloppy opening nine (four bogeys), Stricker couldn't mount a comeback and was bounced by the 14th-seed Coetzee. The South African didn't have to do much; he opened with 13 consecutive pars before making birdies at two of his last three to close out the match.
Next opponent: Patrick Reed (Jones bracket)
PATRICK REED, USA def. GRAHAM DeLAET, Canada, 1 up
Recap: In a battle of two birdie machines, it was a 5-foot par putt that clinched the upset for the 11th-seeded Reed. Reed, who famously went undefeated in match play in his two trips to the NCAA Championship (defeating players like Harris English and Peter Uihlein along the way), held off DeLaet, making three birdies on his back nine to turn around the match. DeLaet nearly holed a 40-foot birdie putt at 18 to force extra holes. After a win last month at the Humana Challenge, Reed is making his first Accenture start.
Quotable: "Graham is a great player," Reed said. "If you're not completely throwing him away and beating him badly, he's going to claw back."
Next opponent: George Coetzee (Jones bracket)
BEN HOGAN BRACKET
RICKIE FOWLER, USA def. IAN POULTER, England, 2 and 1
Recap: Fowler, a 14th-seed against match play master Poulter, was 3 up through seven, winning two of those holes with pars. Poulter, the 2010 Accenture Match Play champ, could never gain any momentum. He was 2 down through 12, but Fowler won the 13th with an eagle. Poulter, a No. 3 seed, had a good chance to push it to the 18th, but couldn't convert a 7-foot birdie at No. 17.
Watch: Fowler's eagle at 14 | Poulter's birdie at 14
Quotable: "I was definitely an underdog coming in," Fowler said. "Heck, if I was filling out a bracket, I would have picked Poulter, too."
Next opponent: Jimmy Walker (Hogan bracket)
JIMMY WALKER, USA def. BRANDEN GRACE, South Africa, 5 and 4
Recap: The sixth-seeded Walker, the FedExCup leader and hottest player on the PGA TOUR this season, made his first Accenture match a memorable one. He birdied three of the first five holes, then won the eighth hole with a par to take a commanding lead. Grace, an 11th seed, won the 11th with a birdie, but then conceded Walker's 5-footer for birdie at the par-5 13th after failing to reach the green with his fourth shot, Walker closed out the match with a 12-footer for birdie at No. 14.
Watch: Walker's birdie at 14
Quotable: "It was fun today," Walker said. "Just kept the ball right out in front of me and tried not to get in too much trouble ... Giving yourself a lot of looks at birdies is key."
Next opponent: Rickie Fowler (Hogan bracket)
RORY McILROY, NO. IRELAND def. BOO WEEKLEY, USA, 3 and 2
Recap: There was no first-round departure for McIlroy this year. Weekley led 1 up twice in the early going but each time McIlroy, seeded first in the Ben Hogan bracket, answered with a birdie to square the match. He took the lead for good when Weekley bogeyed the seventh hole and padded it with birdies at the next two. The Northern Irishman went 4 up when he got up and down for birdie from the greenside bunker at the par-5 11th before losing a little focus on the homeward stretch. He missed a 10-footer for par at the 12th hole and conceded the 15th to Weekley after his second shot ended up farther behind him in the desert. But the American then missed a 4-footer for par at the 16th hole and McIlroy had the 3 and 2 win.
Quotable: "Today was good for the first sort of 11 or 12 holes, which is good," McIlroy said. "Then I went 4 up through 11 and I got a little complacent, I think. Lost a little bit of concentration. I probably went a couple of holes further than I should have."
Next opponent: Harris English (Hogan bracket)
HARRIS ENGLISH, USA, def. LEE WESTWOOD, England, 5 and 3
Recap: English birdied the first and never looked back, playing a bogey-free round and adding five more birdies along the way. In nine starts this season, English has already racked up five top 10s. English will now play Rory McIlroy. In 2012, the two were paired together in the final round at the Honda Classic. Rory won and became No. 1 in the world; English shot 77.
An early flight home isn't exactly unusual for Westwood; he's only made it past Round 2 once in 14 appearances here.
Next opponent: Rory McIlroy (Jones bracket)
CHARL SCHWARTZEL, South Africa def. KEVIN STADLER, USA, 3 and 2
Recap: After a top-5 finish last week at Riviera, Schwartzel turned away Waste Management Phoenix Open winner Kevin Stadler. Schwartzel never got more than 1 up until making birdies at 14 and 15, eventually closing out Stadler with a par at 16.
Quotable: "I never really gave him anything," Schwartzel said. "The match was very close most of the way. I had a chance on 8, 11 and 12 to sort of pull away a little bit, but I missed fairly easy putts."
Next opponent: Jim Furyk (Hogan bracket)
JIM FURYK, USA def. CHRIS KIRK, USA, 2 and 1
Recap: Despite making four bogeys in five holes on the front nine, Kirk extended the match all the way to No. 17, but still came out on the losing end. Steady as ever, Furyk was bogey-free in advancing to Round 2, rolling in three birdies and finishing with six straight pars. Since 2005, he's failed to get to the Round of 32 six different times.
Quotable: " The score is not probably going to plow anyone today, 3‑under," Furyk said. "I think I feel like in the past at times I worried too much about the match play part of it and not just going out and playing my style."
Next opponent: Charl Schwartzel (Hogan bracket)
SERGIO GARCIA, Spain, def. MARC LEISHMAN, Australia, 22 holes
Recap: It wasn't the longest bout in Accenture Match Play Championship history -- two have been extended to 26 -- but this was one of the day's most engrossing and well-played. Leishman held the upper hand through the first 10 holes but Garcia, who is playing in his 10th Accenture, grabbed a 1-up lead with consecutive birdies at Nos. 11 and 12. But Leishman, who is an Accenture rookie, won the 14th with a par and the 15th with birdie to get back to 1 up before Garcia squared the match with an 8-footer for birdie at No. 17. The Spaniard had a chance to win with Leishman in trouble on the 18th hole but he missed a 6-footer for par and the match went to overtime. When he got another opportunity on the 22nd hole, though, Garcia buried it.
Quotable: "It was a tough match," Garcia said. "I thought Marc, other than 18, he played very well. He put me under pressure most of the holes. I didn't play that great, but I managed to stay, you know, with a couple of nice birdies and then a couple of really good pars, I guess. But it was a difficult match."
Next opponent: Bill Haas (Hogan bracket)
BILL HAAS, USA def. MIGUEL A. JIMENEZ, Spain, 4 and 3
Recap: The 7th-seeded Haas never trailed in the match with the eclectic 50-year-old Spaniard, who had an 11-11 record at Accenture while the American had yet to get past the first round in three previous starts. Haas won the second hole with a par, the third with a 7-footer and the par-5 eighth with a two-putt birdie to make the turn 3 up, then cruised on the back nine. Jimenez only made one birdie in 15 holes.
Quotable: "Being the first time out of the first round, I was very optimistic," Haas said. "You can't write yourself off before you tee up or you never have a chance."
Next opponent: Sergio Garcia (Hogan bracket)
GARY PLAYER BRACKET
MATT KUCHAR, USA def. BERND WIESBERGER, Austria, 3 and 2
Recap: Kuchar improved his Match Play record to 16-3 and three after coasting past Wiesberger. The most notable part of the match was its bizarre finish. Kuchar had a putt to close out the match at No. 14, but forgot to replace his ball marker after moving out of Wiesberger's line. He had to concede the hole and ended up winning two holes later.
Quotable: "There's no uniqueness to my strategy," Kuchar said of his Match Play dominance. "It's pretty much a stroke play strategy. I just try to hit the best shot for the situation."
Next opponent: Ryan Moore (Player bracket)
RYAN MOORE, USA def. JOOST LUITEN, Netherlands, 1 up
Recap: Moore never trailed and didn't make a bogey in this match. But the Accenture Match Play Championship rookie from The Netherlands didn't go down without a battle, winning five holes to Moore's six and taking him to the 18th hole. Moore led 2 up at the turn after three birdies on the front nine and his fifth at the 13th hole put Luiten 3 down. But the 29-year-old Dutchman fought back with consecutive birdies at Nos. 14 and 14 before both parred in and Moore advanced.
Next opponent: Matt Kuchar (Player bracket)
JUSTIN ROSE, England, def. SCOTT PIERCY, USA, USA, 1 up
Recap: Justin Rose is moving on to Round 2, but it certainly wasn't easy for the No. 1 seed. Rose didn't make a par breaker until No. 11, when he rolled in a huge eagle putt to square the match with Piercy. He birdied the following hole and held on all the way to the 18th to improve his record to 7-8.
Quotable: "It wasn't a classic, but it didn't need to be," Rose said. "I kind of kept saying to myself I've got all day to beat him, and that's the way it turned out."
Next opponent: Ernie Els (Player bracket)
ERNIE ELS, South Africa def. STEPHEN GALLACHER, Scotland, 19 holes
Recap: Gallacher missed a 7 footer that would have won the match over The Big Easy and he couldn't recover in extra holes, making bogey and exiting the tournament in the first round for the second consecutive year. Els put together an ugly win (two birdies and five bogeys), but nevertheless, he's moving on to Round 2 for the fifth time in six years.
Quotable: "I think the putt on 18 really bothered him," Els said. "Because he hit a good putt. How that stayed out, I don't know."
Next opponent: Justin Rose (Player bracket)
JASON DUFNER, USA, def. SCOTT STALLINGS, USA, 19 holes
Recap: Dufner started slowly, finding himself 3 down through 10 holes. In fact, he didn't make a birdie until the 11th hole and that -- and the one at No. 12 -- were to halve. But he won the 14th hole with a par and the 16th with an 18-footer for birdie to narrow the margin to 1 down. Stallings then conceded Dufner's 12-foot birdie putt at the 17th after taking four shots to reach the putting surface and the match was all square. Dufner went on to win with a par on the 19th hole after Stallings missed the green and couldn't make a saving 19-footer. With the victory, Dufner advanced to the second round of the first time in three appearances at Dove Mountain while Stallings, who won the Farmers Insurance Open last month, was playing in his first Accenture Match Play Championship.
Next opponent: Matteo Manassero (Player bracket)
MATTEO MANASSERO, Italy def. LUKE DONALD, England, 5 and 4
Recap: This marks just the second time in 10 starts that Luke Donald is packing his bags after Round 1 of the Match Play. The 2011 champ got beat down by a bogey-free Manassero, who played flawlessly and made 6 birdies in 14 holes. Manassero's had a bit of bad luck at this event; in his three appearances here, he's been beaten by one eventual champ (Donald in 2011) and one eventual runner-up (Mahan in '13).
Quotable: "Tee to green I played very solid," Manassero said. "That was my goal coming into today. It was very important, I think, in match play to keep the ball in play and always have a shot at birdie."
Next opponent: Jason Dufner (Player bracket)
JORDAN SPIETH, USA def. PABLO LARRAZABAL, SPAIN, 2 up
Recap: It took him a while to get going, but once he did, there was no stopping the third-seeded Spieth, who made six birdies in eight holes to build an insurmountable lead. Making his first appearance at the Match Play, Spieth started slowly and was 1 down after making bogey at 11. But he birdied the next four to swing the match in his favor.
Watch: Spieth's birdie at 15
Quotable: "We all had good looks at birdie almost every hole," Spieth said. "Pars weren't going to win. It was a great battle. I just had a few fall my way on the back nine, was able to hit it a little closer than he did."
Next opponent: Thomas Bjorn (Player bracket)
THOMAS BJORN, Denmark def. FRANCESCO MOLINARI, Italy, 2 and 1
Recap: The 6th-seeded Dane led from the outset in this one, although never more than 2 up, an advantage accomplished with three of his four birdies. Molinari also had four birdies but he lost the first with a bogey and the 17th with another. With the victory, Bjorn avenged his first-round loss to Molinari in 20 holes in 2012.
Quotable: "It's not very nice to come into this tournament and play your good friends in the first round, but that happens," Bjorn said. "It was obviously you go out and play golf and try to win the match you play in. I played nice today."
Next opponent: Jordan Spieth (Player bracket)
SAM SNEAD BRACKET
RICHARDE STERNE, South Africa def. ZACH JOHNSON, USA, 5 and 4
Recap: Sterne certainly doesn't mind a big stage. After giving Tiger Woods a run for his money in Presidents Cup singles, he defeated No. 1 seed Johnson to play his way into Round 2. Sterne played beautifully and took control early, making six birdies and no bogeys on the way to sending home the World No. 6. The bad news is that he'll be playing Hunter Mahan, who has beaten Sterne both times they've faced off.
Quotable: "Hopefully the third time it'll be lucky around there," Sterne said of playing Mahan yet again. "Eventually it's got to come my way. That's how I look at it."
Next opponent: Hunter Mahan (Snead bracket)
HUNTER MAHAN, USA def. GONZALO FERNANDEZ-CASTANO, Spain, 3 and 2
Recap: Mahan, who has reached the title tilt each of the last two years, winning once, ran his Accenture Match Play Championship record to 16-5 with the victory. That said, Fernandez-Castano two-putted the par-5 second for birdie and held a 1-up lead until he bogeyed No. 7. The match was all square as it went to the back nine but Mahan rolled in birdie putts of 20 and 21 feet at Nos. 10 and 11 to grab a lead he would not relinquish. The Spaniard birdied the par-5 13th to get back to 1 down but Mahan responded with a tap-in from 17 inches at No. 15 to go 2 up again. The match ended when Fernandez-Castano found the desert at the 16th hole on the way to a bogey.
Quotable: "It was solid," Mahan said. "I didn't give him many holes. I made a couple of nice up-and-downs early in the round and got lucky. He had some opportunities to go two or even three up after four or five holes. Kind of road the ship and then played some really solid holes on the back nine and was able to get a victory."
Next opponent: Richard Sterne (Snead bracket)
GRAEME McDOWELL, No. Ireland def. GARY WOODLAND, USA, 19 holes
Recap: The two live on the same street in Lake Nona and flew to Tucson in the same private jet. But Woodland is headed home by himself after the first round for the second straight year after McDowell staged a gritty comeback over the last four holes. The big hitting Woodland got up early when he birdied four of his first six holes and won the seventh with a par to go 4 up. McDowell managed to win two of the next three holes, though, and the lead stayed at 2 until Woodland made what turned out to be his final birdie at the 15th hole. The American then gave McDowell the opening he needed when he couldn't get up and down for par at the par-3 16th. The Northern Irishman won the 17th with a 12-footer for birdie and the 18th with a conceded par after Woodland needed four shots just to get to the fringe. A wedge to 6 feet on the first extra hole then gave McDowell the win.
Quotable: "I thought it was over," said McDowell, who was 2 down at the 15th hole. "Literally, you're not coming back from 3 down against a guy that's playing as well as him. I thought it was over. Yeah, I'm still going to try to hit my shots. But it required a mistake from him to ... give me half a sniff, even. Hit it over the back of 16, was that mistake."
Next opponent: Hideki Matsuyama (Snead bracket)
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA, Japan def. MARTIN KAYMER, Germany, 2 and 1
Recap: Neither player lead more than 1 up until Matsuyama won the match at the 17th hole, handing the former world No. 1 his first first-round loss since 2008. Kaymer only trailed once, for one hole, until Matsuyama made consecutive birdies at Nos. 14 and 15 to get to 1 up. The match ended at the 17th hole when Kaymer missed the green and was unable to convert a 21-footer for par.
Quotable: "Martin played very well," Matsuyama said. "I was fortunate to come out on top. I played well, too. I'm really, really not that good at match play. I'm just happy to death that I won today and I get to continue on tomorrow."
Next opponent: Graeme McDowell (Snead bracket)
PETER HANSON, Sweden def. DUSTIN JOHNSON, USA, 4 and 3
Recap: Hanson won the first hole and never looked back as he upset the second-seeded Johnson, a runner-up in his last two stroke-play events. Johnson squared the match with his second -- and turns out, final -- birdie of the day at the fourth hole. But Hanson rolled in a 5-footer at the fifth to go 1 up, then won the seventh when Johnson made double-bogey from the desert and the ninth with an 11-footer for birdie and a 3-up advantage. The Swede did lose the 11th with his lone bogey but Johnson handed him the 13th and 14th with bogeys to go 4 down. Johnson has failed to advance out of the first round in five of his six appearances.
Next opponent: Victor Dubuisson (Snead bracket)
VICTOR DUBUISSON, France def. KEVIN STREELMAN, USA, 4 and 3
Recap: The 7th-seeded Dubuisson, who picked up his first European Tour win in November in Turkey, never trailed. Dubuisson won the second hole with a two-putt birdie from 52 feet and the fourth with a par before Streelman won his only hole -- with his only birdie -- at the sixth. Dubuisson regained control with three birdies in a four-hole stretch that started at No. 8 to go 4 up. He also won the 13th hole to boost his advantage to 5 up when Streelman made his fifth bogey.
Quotable: "The first few holes I didn't play really well," Dubuisson said. "And then when he made the great birdie on the par‑3, the 6 ... it woke me up, you know."
Next opponent: Peter Hanson (Snead bracket)
BUBBA WATSON, USA def. MIKKO ILONEN, Finland, 2 and 1
Recap: Third-seeded Watson, fresh off his Northern Trust Open win, took the lead with a birdie at the par-5 second, but three straight bogeys beginning at No. 5 left the American 3 down. Watson then holed a 90-yard shot from the fairway for eagle at the par-5 eighth to square the match. Ilonen, a 14th seed, answered by winning the next two holes with birdies. But starting at 13, Watson took charge with three straight birdies and Ilonen was out of responses. Watson's fifth and final birdie at the 17th sealed the win.
Watch: Bubba's win
Next opponent: Jonas Blixt (Snead bracket)
JONAS BLIXT, Sweden def. KEEGAN BRADLEY, USA, 2 and 1
Recap: This match was tightly contested for the first 11 holes as neither player led more than 1 up. The 11th-seeded Blixt, playing in the Accenture Match Play Championship, squared the match with a 3-footer for birdie at the par-5 11th and took a lead he would not relinquish. No. 6-seeded Bradley, looking to reach the second round for the second time in four starts, bogeyed the next two holes. Blixt made a 4-footer at No. 15 to go 3 up. Bradley extended the match with a 49-foot birdie at the 16th but couldn't convert from 8 feet on the 17th.
Next opponent: Bubba Watson (Snead bracket)