We’re well into the afternoon wave at The Old White TPC, and no one has been able to catch Trevor Immelman, who leads after a 6-under 64.
Brendon de Jonge has a chance to at 4 under through 12 holes, but he’s been stuck on that number for about an hour.
Meanwhile, Kenny Perry, Gary Woodland, Ryuji Imada and Kyle Stanley are all sitting another stroke back at 3 under.
Speaking of Woodland and Stanley, they, along with J.B. Holmes and Steven Bowditch, are among the four players in the field this week with the best driving distance average.
Coincidence that three of those four are near the top of the leaderboard? Probably not, especially since 200 yards was added to the course for this year’s tournament. And the only one of that group who didn’t play well Thursday was Holmes, who shot 76.
DUBLIN, Ohio – Ryuji Imada is rebounding well after his disappointing finish last week at the HP Byron Nelson Championship.
Imada held the lead midway through the final nine on Sunday at TPC Las Colinas. But he bogeyed three of his last five holes and ended up tied for third, one stroke out of the playoff won by Keegan Bradley.
Imada just made the turn at Muirfield Village in 33 and is 4 under for the tournament. Rory McIlroy leads at 7 under.
Imada made four birdies and one bogey on the front nine. He rolled in a 6-footer at the second hole and a 16-footer at No. 3 before dropping a shot at the par-3 fourth when he couldn’t get up and down from the greenside bunker.
Imada went on to birdie both par 5s on the front side. He rebounded from that lone bogey with a 10-footer at No. 5 and made a 4-footer at the seventh hole.
IRVING, Texas – Ryuji Imada has assumed the solo lead with five holes to play in Sunday’s final round. He’s at 5 under; there are six players still on the course who are within three shots of the lead.
Imada, whose only PGA TOUR win came in a playoff at the 2008 AT&T Classic, went out in 1-under 34 and just birdied the par-3 13th to increase his lead to two strokes.
Given that scoring conditions are tough in the 35-mph winds, that may be tough for anyone else to catch if Imada can shoot pars for the rest of his round.
If Imada wins, he would move to 30th in FedExCup points. He started the week 138th in points.
Joe Ogilvie did have the solo lead about an hour ago but he bogeyed the par-3 13th.
Ogilvie, Keegan Bradley, Matt Kuchar and 54-hole leader Ryan Palmer are all within two shots of Imada.
John Rollins and Arjun Atwal are another shot back.
Defending champion Jason Day is the clubhouse leader at 1 under after shooting a 3-under 67 that included seven birdies.
IRVING, Texas – Joe Ogilvie has birdied three consecutive holes and is now 7 under for the tournament, just one shot off the lead held by Ryan Palmer.
Palmer did lead by five shots at one point before Ogilvie heated up. Palmer also has suffered his first bogey at the day, at the par-4 15th. He’s now 3 under on his round and 8 under overall.
Ogilvie shot a 66 on Thursday and had a rollercoaster opening nine Friday. He’s 3 under for his round through 13 holes.
Ryuji Imada has had a productive morning. With one hole left in his round, Imada is 4 under for the day and 5 under overall. He’s on pace to shoot his lowest score on TOUR since January.
Teenage amateur Jordan Spieth continues to stay above the cut line. He’s 2 under through his first 10 holes and 3 under for the tournament. With half the field still yet to tee off in the second round, the projected cut line is 1 over.
Count Bubba Watson among the most recent PGA TOUR players pledging their support to the relief effort for the victims of the deadly earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
Watson just finished his final round of 68 at the Transitions Championship. And before he left the Copperhead Course, Watson found a PGA TOUR official and gave him a check for $50,000 made out to the American Red Cross.
Ryuji Imada, who was born in Hiroshima, got the ball rolling this week when he left a handwritten note in every locker saying he was planning on donating $1,000 per birdie at the Transitions Championship to the relief effort. He said he would appreciate his fellow TOUR members joining him in support.
A day later, K.J. Choi, who once played the Japan Tour, pledged $100,000 to the American Red Cross.
Several other players joined Imada in pledging per birdie – including Brandt Snedeker, who has birdied his first two holes Sunday and stands one shot off the lead. He pledged $500 for each one (he currently has made 14) and his sponsor Bridgestone Golf will also make a donation.
Bobby Gates also pledged $250 per birdie and just finished the Transitions Championship with 12.
TO MAKE A DONATION TO THE RELIEF EFFORT, CLICK HERE.
On Wednesday afternoon at the Transitions Championship, Ryuji Imada sat down and handwrote a note that he then made copies in the tournament’s media center. His one-paragraph missive was to the point:
“Dear Players: As you may know last week there was an earthquake disaster in my home country of Japan. To support the many people affected by the earthquake. I have decided to donate $1,000 per birdie I make at this week’s event. I would be thankful for any of my fellow competitors to join me in support with any donations. Ryuji Imada."
Imada then took the notes into the Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club’s clubhouse and asked the locker room attendant to put a copy in the players’ lockers. Imada’s was a simple statement and a plea from the Hiroshima, Japan, native, who immigrated to the U.S. in 1990 as a 14-year-old as he pursued his dream of playing golf professionally. Imada, a PGA TOUR member since 2005 who attended college at the University of Georgia, wants to help those whose lives changed dramatically when the earthquake, registering 9.0 on the Richter Scale, shook the earth.
As Imada says, he’s doing “in a small way” what he can to assist those devastated by the events in Asia. With the Transitions Championship this week in Palm Harbor, Fla., not far from Imada’s home in Tampa, the winner of the 2008 AT&T Classic took time to visit with Laury Livsey of the PGA TOUR’s communications department to talk about the situation and why he immediately became involved with earthquake relief.
To read the rest of Imada's Q&A, click here.
The media contingent following Ryo Ishikawa, Ryuji Imada and Yuta Ikeda was large. Unfortunately for the group, so was their combined score.
Imada, who just two weeks ago tied for 13th at the Waste Management Phoenix Open with four rounds in the 60s, struggled the most of the three, shooting an 8-over 79 to sit in last place on the leaderboard. He hit just eight fairways and eight greens in regulation while making a triple bogey, a double bogey and three bogeys. Imada shot 41 on the back nine.
Things didn’t go much better for Ishikawa, who is playing in his first PGA TOUR event of the year. He hit just seven fairways and eight greens and made six bogeys, three birdies and a double bogey.
Ikeda, meanwhile, had a wild day with five birdies, three bogeys and a double bogey in a round of 71.