The Numbers Are Numbing
After David Duval's bellwether win in the BellSouth Classic, which came on Opening Day of the baseball season, he's batting .500 (4 for 8) in '99 and .324 (11 for 34) over the last 543 days. He has also eclipsed the single-season earnings mark he set last year. Then there's this: In '97, when Tiger Woods won the money title, he took home 4.8% of the total purse in events he entered. In '98, Duval won 4.7%. This year he's at 9.7%—and climbing.
Duval is the first player to win four tournaments before the Masters since Johnny Miller in 1974, and the first to come out on top in the two events leading up to Augusta. Should Duval win there, he would be the first to win three consecutive starts since '97, when he won the Michelob, the Disney and the Tour Championship. The last to win three consecutively scheduled events was Gary Player (the '78 Masters, the Tournament of Champions and the Houston Open).... Duval has earned $2,598,300, $7,269 more than in '98, and leads the Tour in scoring (68.22), putting (1.687 per green in regulation), greens in reg (73.6%), birdies (5.07) and the all-around category (185).... Before Sunday, Lad-brokes had Woods at 7 to 1 to win the Masters, with Duval at 8 to 1. After Sunday Duval was 5 to 1, Woods 6 to 1.
The two-round snowout at the Tradition, which was won by Graham Marsh in Scotts-dale, Ariz., was a first in tour history.... Bob Duval shot a second-round 68, but couldn't overcome an opening 73 in his bid to become part of the second Duval family sweep in as many weeks. He tied for fifth.
By winning her second tournament of the year, the Longs Drugs Challenge in Lincoln, Calif., Juli Inkster added to the discrepancy between the tour's top five players and everyone else. Karrie Webb, Inkster, Dottie Pepper, Kelly Robbins and Meg Mallon have won a combined $1.6 million, or almost 25% of the prize money this season.... Sherri Steinhauer, who finished second, four behind Inkster, passed 20 players with her 69 in blustery conditions last Saturday.
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