Ricky Barnes has withdrawn from the Bob Hope Classic after eight holes of the third round due to a nagging back problem. The condition prompted him to withdraw prior to the start of the Sony Open in Hawaii.
Barnes shot a 65 in his 2011 debut on Wednesday, then followed with a 70 on Thursday. He was 2 over for the day when he withdrew. Here’s what he tweeted after his early exit.
Had to Withdraw today. Woke up this am and Back was giving me fits again. Hope to b back at Phoenix @RealRickyBarnes
HONOLULU – Ricky Barnes withdrew from the Sony Open in Hawaii on Wednesday, and PGA TOUR rookie Jim Renner has taken his spot in this week’s field.
Barnes cited a back injury as the reason for his decision to withdraw.
Renner’s inclusion in the field means 27 rookies will compete in the first full-field event of the season.
Renner will be paired with Jason Dufner and Jesper Parnevik in the first two rounds. That threesome tees off at 12:30 p.m. ET on Thursday and 5 p.m. ET on Friday.
For Ricky Barnes, who grew up in Northern California, this week is like coming home.
”Usually the closest that I get is Pebble Beach and the AT&T, and we're about an hour closer now. A lot of family and friends around here,” Barnes said earlier this week before shooting a 1-under 70 Thursday at CordeValle. “Anywhere within about two hours of Northern California feels like home.”
As for how things have changed for him since he contended at last year’s U.S. Open at Bethpage Black?
“Good in a good way,” Barnes said. “I built up the confidence I think again. Didn't finish off the year like I wanted to last year.
“That was one of the things I wanted to iron out last year coming into this year, so not the post-season I worked with my coach a lot and really tried to tighten up the short game to save a bunch of shots and then score as well with the scoring clubs. That's what I've been able to do so far.”
Rory McIlroy and Ricky Barnes have just teed off – and despite the 3-inch difference in height, from a distance they looked like twins.
Both are wearing white pants, caps and shoes, and electric blue shirts. Barnes, perhaps not as accustomed to the temperatures, does have a white turlleneck under his shirt.
Maybe a phone call this morning would have been in order. – Helen Ross
For a while Friday morning, it appeared Ricky Barnes was going to challenge Louis Oosthuizen for the lead.
The 29-year-old American birdied his first hole, eagled the fifth and added another birdie on No. 7 to make the turn in 32 and at 8 under for the tournament. When he added another birdie at the 10th hole, Barnes was just one stroke off the pace.
But a double bogey at the 14th hole – which was originally reported in the official scoring as a bogey – started a downward slide. Barnes bogeyed the par-5 15th and dropped another shot at the Road Hole so he finished with a 71 for a total of 5 under.
Barnes, who tied for second at last year’s U.S. Open, is playing in his second British Open. He missed the cut in 2003 at Royal St. George’s. – Helen Ross
Last year, Ricky Barnes had just one top-10 – and only one top-25. This year, he’s already lapped that with five top-10s, including two in his last three starts. After a 64 Saturday at the Travelers Championship, he’s well on his way to another one.
“I’ve been real consistent this year. Last year was the exact opposite,” said Barnes, whose lone top-10 came at the U.S. Open, where he tied for second. “I put a lot of hard work in at the beginning of the year getting mostly adapted to the new grooves.
“I knew it was going to be tough. But putting the ball in play, putting the ball in position to make birdies, and I’m taking advantage of them.” -- Brian Wacker
Last year's Cinderfella, Ricky Barnes, is making a big move up the leaderboard.
The former U.S. Amateur champion, who tied for second last year at Bethpage Black, has just gone birdie-birdie-eagle to move to even par for the tournament. Barnes has three holes remaining and is one stroke off the lead.
His runner-up finish a year ago was Barnes' only top-10. This year, though, he's had five -- including in his last two starts. He's coming off a tie for third at the Memorial, where Barnes shot 62 in the third round. -- Helen Ross
Rickie Fowler isn’t going away. He just erased that double bogey earlier in the day by making his second straight birdie, getting up and down from 69 yards to make birdie on the par-5 15th hole. He still trails by two, though, and he is running out of holes.
Meanwhile, Ricky Barnes just holed out from the fairway for the second day in a row. Barnes jarred it from the 15th fairway, a day after doing the same on No. 11. The downside for Barnes, of course, is that he’s 1 over on his round today after shooting that sizzling 62 on Saturday.