By PGATOUR.COM Staff
Aaron Baddeley will be on familiar territory at this week's Emirates Australian Open at Royal Sydney Golf Club. Baddeley was an 18-year-old amateur when he won the 1999 Australian Open at the same course. He beat a field that included Greg Norman and Colin Montgomerie.
"It's pretty amazing that it's 14 years, that's just flown by,'' Baddeley told Golf Australia. "It was big week for me emotionally and career-wise, but then I didn’t realise how big it was at the time."
He was a professional when he won the following year's Australian Open. Expectations were high for Baddeley after his back-to-back wins. He's won three times on the PGA TOUR (2006 RBC Heritage; 2007 Waste Management Phoenix Open; 2011 Northern Trust Open) but is coming off a trying TOUR season. He missed 14 of 24 cuts in 2013 and had just two top-10s. He ranked 178th (out of 180 players) in greens in regulation and second-to-last in driving accuracy.
He switched instructors recently to the team of former PGA TOUR winner Grant Waite and Chris Como, a Dallas-based biomechanics specialist. Baddeley has made three starts in the 2013-14 season, highlighted by a T-5 at the CIMB Classic. It was his first top-five finish since a fourth-place finish at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in February 2012. He's
"I'm just trying to understand what works best for me, and just what I need to do to play good," Baddeley, 32, said. "I’ve made a couple of little changes, only small changes but major in the sense that they’ve made a big difference."
By PGATOUR.COM Staff
Lee Westwood will reunite with longtime caddie Billy Foster at next week's Northwestern Mutual World Challenge in Thousand Oaks, Calif., according to a report in the Daily Telegraph. Westwood and Foster split up after Foster injured his right knee playing soccer at the 2012 Wells Fargo Championship.
“Everyone knows that Lee and Billy were a great partnership and it made sense that now Billy is fully fit again that the partnership reforms,” Westwood's manager, Chubby Chandler, told the Daily Telegraph. “… They’ve had their heart-to-heart, sorted out whatever needed sorting out, and Billy will be back on Lee’s bag permanently, starting at Tiger’s event next week.”
Westwood won eight times and reached No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking with Foster on the bag during their three years together. Westwood also had six top-three finishes in majors during their time together. Foster has been working for Branden Grace, a member of this year's International Presidents Cup team.
Westwood is playing this week's Franklin Templeton Shootout with Ian Poulter and next week's Northwestern Mutual World Challenge. He'll return at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, where he finished third at the 2008 U.S. Open.
By PGATOUR.COM Staff
Jason Day quietly celebrated his victory Sunday at the ISPS HANDA World Cup of Golf. His focus already had turned to the Emirates Australian Open, which begins Thursday at Royal Sydney Golf Club.
“I didn’t go out and drink. I didn’t do any of that stuff,” Day said Tuesday. “I had a dinner with my family and I was in bed by 10. I had to wake up the next morning to go to the gym. I was really trying to focus on preparing for this week. This week is huge for me.”
The World Cup was Day’s first win since the 2010 HP Byron Nelson Championship. He has his eye on his home country's national championship this week.
"It's one of the tournaments that I've always wanted to win,” Day said. “It's huge to an Australian. So many great names ... have won the trophy. To one day hopefully put my name on the trophy would be an amazing honor.”
He’ll play the first two rounds with Kevin Streelman and Adam Scott. When asked who was the longer hitter between the two Australians in the group, Day joked, “(Scott) will probably hit it past me because he looks a little fitter than me."
Day rose to No. 11 in the Official World Golf Ranking after his victory last week at Royal Melbourne. He said he still has a goal of reaching No. 1 in the world; his early-morning trip to the gym after his World Cup win was proof of his dedication to that goal.
"Being No. 1 has always been a goal ever since I practically picked up the golf club. I've always wanted to get to that No. 1 spot,” Day said. “We had a goal, me and (Day’s swing coach and caddie) Colin (Swatton), when we first met, back when I was 12 or 13, that we wanted to become the No. 1 player in the world. We had a goal to get there at 22. We ended up gettig to No. 7 at 23, so we fell short but it's still on my mind to get to that No. 1 spot. It's so tough with Tiger being at the top. You have to be working harder than him. You have to be playing well every week. I have to improve each and every year."
By PGATOUR.COM Staff
Steve Stricker didn't let a little snow stop him from preparing for 2014. Stricker, who famously rebuilt his game while hitting balls from a trailer in the Wisconsin winters, posted this tweet Monday:
PGATOUR.COM is unveiling its top 10 moments of the 2013 season. The videos will be introduced on weekdays for the last two weeks of November. Check back each day for our favorites from the 2013 PGA TOUR Season.
|Top 10 Moments of the 2013 PGA TOUR Season|
||Nov. 18||Garcia hits shot from a tree at Arnold Palmer Invitational|
||Nov. 19||Reed escapes from the trees to win Wyndham Championship|
||Nov. 20||Woods dominates elite field at Bridgestone Invitational|
||Nov. 21||Dufner ties majors scoring record, wins PGA Championship|
||Nov. 22||Rose's historic approach on No. 18 at Merion to secure U.S. Open|
||Nov. 25||Spieth's incredible bunker shot during John Deere playoff|
||Nov. 26||Stenson wins the FedExCup|
||Nov. 27||Furyk shoots 59 in second round of BMW Championship|
||Nov. 28||Mickelson cards final-round 66 to win The Open Championship|
||Nov. 29||Scott's putt to force a playoff at The Masters|
By PGATOUR.COM Staff
Rory McIlroy wasn't the only celebrity on his flight to Australia for this week's Emirates Australian Open. Will Ferrell was sitting across from McIlroy, heading Down Under for the premiere of "Anchorman 2." The chance meeting resulted in McIlroy being invited to the film's premiere.
"It was very funny. Obviously, I think everyone loved the first 'Anchorman,' and the second was just as good," McIlroy said. "It was great to be a part of it last night and be invited and see it for the first time. The flight over, all the crew were over on the flight as well, but we were all very tired so most of us just put our heads down and got straight to sleep. It was great to meet all the crew, and obviously a big fan of Will Ferrell and Steve Carell and Paul Rudd, and a few of the other guys who are part of the cast."
McIlroy, No. 6 in the Official World Golf Ranking, is playing his first tournament in Australia since 2007. He's coming off consecutive top-10s, a T-6 at the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions and DP World Tour Championship-Dubai. It's the first time he's had back-to-back top-10s since the Wells Fargo Championship (T-10) and THE PLAYERS Championship (T-8) in May.
"The game is good. It feels good. The last couple tournaments have been much better. I've played well. A little disappointed with how I've finished, but ... it's good to be back in Australia," he said.
PGATOUR.COM staffers and writers thought back on what they will remember about the 2013 season, and their recollections can be read here.
We want to know what you'll remember from this past season on the PGA TOUR. Tell us below.
PGATOUR.COM staffers and writers wrote essays about what they'll remember about the 2013 season, from great rounds to breakthrough victories to personal triumphs. Check out their recollections here, and tell us what you'll remember here:
|What we'll remember from the 2013 PGA TOUR season
|Author||I'll remember ...
||Witnessing Jim Furyk's historic, nerve-racking 59|
||Mickelson comes oh-so-close to historic 59
||Sharing Tiger Woods' 61 with my son
|Clifton Brown||Scott overcoming adversity to win the Masters
|Amanda Balionis||Rose graceful in victory and defeat|
|Helen Ross||Mickelson's unlikely victory at The Open Championship|
|Chris Dunham||Dufner's first major win at the PGA Championship|
|Sean Martin||Spieth's win at age 19|
|Tom Alter||Compton full of class, accepts Courage Award|
|D.J. Piehowski||Woods, Palmer, Trevino at commercial shoot|
||Dufnering goes viral|
|Ryan Smithson||McIlroy's season full of struggles|
|Vartan Kupelian||Perry's breakthrough Champions Tour major win|
|Larry Dorman||Duke nets first win in 187th start on TOUR|
||Tears, joy, laughter and everything in between|