SI Vault
Big Play
John Elliott Jr.
February 09, 2004
Elliott teaches at Golden Ocala Golf and Equestrian Club in Ocala, Fla., and is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher.
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February 09, 2004

Big Play

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When Colin Montgomerie moved just as Thomas Bjorn was about to hit a shot during last week's Johnnie Walker Classic in Bangkok, the Great Dane got so mad that officials had to join them in a closed-door meeting to resolve the issue. Said PGA champ Shaun Micheel, "Next time I play with those guys, I'm going to pack a whistle, a bell and some boxing gloves." ... Philip Francis, the 15-year-old Scottsdale amateur who got into the 2003 Australian Open after winning the Aaron Baddeley World Junior, just missed Monday qualifying for the FBR Open when he shot a 67 at Gainey Ranch Golf Club in Scottsdale. Asked why he didn't seek a sponsor's exemption a la Michelle Wie, Francis said, "I think you should qualify." Still, he liked the idea of going mano a womano with Wie. "Where do I sign?" he said.... Thanks to a schedule that includes at least five LPGA events, Wie will not play for her Punahou School golf team this year. "It would have been good for us," said coach, John Proud, "not only for her scores but also for the experience for the other girls." ...Forget the massive crowds at Phoenix—even the marshals are unruly. Hal Sutton settled over a putt last Thursday only to be distracted by the click of a shutter. When he looked up, he saw a marshal holding a placard reading QUIET with one hand while pressing a camera to his eye with the other.... PGA Tour vet Chris Smith was among 7,000 fans who rocked to Cheap Trick at the Bird's Nest, the FBR's storied 19th hole, last Thursday. His review: "I was a little disappointed. They should have played more of those great songs from the first couple of albums." ... Tiger Woods dull? Not to Tour rookie Arjun Atwal, whom Tiger recently joined for nine holes while Atwal was playing the Isleworth Country Club. "Tiger was cracking jokes and relating some locker room stories," said Atwal. "He also imitated a few players."


Should the USGA ban putters that touch any part of the body other than the hands?
Yes 34%
No 66%

Based on the percentage of Golf Magazine Top 100 Teachers who responded

"THE TRADITION police are working overtime again. First they put Sam Snead and the croquet style out of
business, and now Vijay and friends are next."
—T.J. Tomasi, Lyman Orchards Golf Club, Middlefield, Conn.


3 Lefties in FBR top 10 ( Phil Mickelson, Steve Flesch, Mike Weir), most since 2000.
10 Pelts taken by Champions Skins Game winner Tom Watson.
11 Consecutive top 10s by Vijay Singh, three short of Tour record.
15 Strokes under par by Kaye on the back nine, best in the field.
37 Pros hitting the island green at the 558-yard 15th in two on Sunday.
273 Sergio Garcia's score, his lowest 72-hole total since 2001.
2 Courses ( Augusta, Colonial) with longer tenure on Tour than Pebble.

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