By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
EAST LOTHIAN, Scotland -- Joost Luiten will be watching Peter Hanson's preparation for the Open Championship with great interest.
After all, Hanson, who is suffering from a back injury, says he's 50-50 as far as teeing it up at Muirfield this week. And Luiten is first alternate now that Scott Stallings made the field when Phil Mickelson, who was already exempt, won the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open.
The problem began when Hanson had to withdraw from The Greenbrier Classic after Sunday's three-hour rain delay. He had seven holes remaining but was unable to move when play resumed at 5 p.m.
There hasn't been much improvement in the week since he left the West Virginia mountains. Hanson came to Scotland last Friday so he could work with his physical therapist, who was up at Castle Stuart for the Scottish Open.
"He's been doing a lot of work on my back while I've been undertaking exercises and having treatment ... just to try and get it ready," Hanson said.
The Swede hasn't been able to practice yet but he planned to hit about 20 wedge shots Monday afternoon. But Hanson played Muirfield in the 1998 British Amateur so he is "no stranger" to the golf course.
"So the big test will be (Tuesday) because it I can play nine holes pain-free then that will be the key to my playing or not," Hanson said.
Is Luiten listening? Should Luiten make the field, Brendon de Jonge will become the first alternate.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
There are only two weeks left for players outside the top 64 in the Official World Golf Ranking to qualify for the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship Feb 22-26 in Marana, Ariz. In other words, Vijay Singh and Padraig Harrington, among others, have some work to do.
Singh and Harrington are 69th and 90th, respectively, and in need of strong performances in one or more likely both of the next two weeks. Singh is in the field for this week’s Waste Management Phoenix Open, while Harrington has the week off.
Last year, Singh also failed to qualify.
Other notables on the outside looking in include Sean O’Hair (68th), Sony Open in Hawaii winner Johnson Wagner (70th) and last year’s Wells Fargo Championship winner Lucas Glover, who is 77th in the world and has yet to play this year after withdrawing from the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions with a knee injury.
The player currently on the bubble at No. 64 is the Netherlands’ Joost Luiten. However with Phil Mickelson having already said that he plans to take that week off, the field would then extend to the 65th player in the world -- currently Rory Sabbatini.
Also among those outside the top 64: Kyle Stanley. The hard-luck loser of the Farmers Insurance Open is 87th in the world. Had he won at Torrey Pines, he would have moved up to 64th.
Others in more dire circumstances include Branden Grace, a two-time winner on the European Tour this year who has only climbed to 93rd; Camilo Villegas (99th); Anthony Kim (102nd); and Stewart Cink (138th).
Only once in Cink’s career has he failed to qualify for the WGC-Accenture Match Play Champisonhip, a tournament he’s been dominant in with six trips to at least the quarterfinals. On four of those occasions Cink reached at least the semifinals, including from 2008 to 2010 when he finished second, third and tied for fifth.
DUBLIN, Ohio -- Joost Luiten, a 25-year-old golfer from The Netherlands, was disqualified Thursday for signing an incorrect scorecard.
In a post-round discussion with a PGA TOUR rules official, Luiten was found to be in violation of Rule 18-2b (ball at rest moves after address) on the 11th hole. The Dutchman was then assessed an additional penalty for violation of Rule 20-7b (playing from a wrong place).
His correct score should have been a 78 but Luiten, who ranks 85th on the European Tour money list, signed for a 76.
Luiten was unaware he had addressed the ball since he had not grounded his club. In a lateral water hazard, though, the player is considered to have addressed the ball after taking a stance.