Subbing for the injured Tiger Woods, Jim Furyk made the most of his opportunity to play in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf.
Furyk birdied the final hole of regulation to force a playoff with Padraig Harrington in the battle of the four 2008 major winners in Tucker's Town, Bermuda. He then sank an eight-foot putt for eagle on the first playoff hole to come away with the victory Wednesday.
Although Furyk didn't capture a major this year, he said winning the PGA Grand Slam was a nice way to cap his year, earning a $600,000 first-place check. He's No. 11 in the world golf rankings and took fifth place in the FedEx Cup playoffs, earning more than $3.4 million in 2008 and recording nine top-10 finishes.
"It was a solid year," Furyk told reporters. "From a personal perspective, I probably would not put it in one of my top five years on Tour. This is my 15th [year], but it was a good, solid year."
Furyk, whose last win on the PGA Tour came in the 2007 Canadian Open, carded consecutive rounds of 2-under-par 68 on the Mid Ocean Club course to tie Harrington, who won the British Open and PGA Championship.
Retief Goosen shot a final-round 71 to finish at 1-over 141. Masters champion Trevor Immelman rallied with a second-round 69, but finished last at 5-over 145.
Furyk said he was disappointed not to win a regular PGA Tour event this year, but that playing for the victorious U.S. Ryder Cup team helped put a positive spin on his 2008 campaign.
"I won't say it took a little sting out of the year, but it definitely lifted my spirits tremendously," Furyk said of the Ryder Cup. "I really looked at the year from a different perspective, and to be able to come here and win this event is the icing on the cake, and it definitely again changes my perspective.
"As well as I played at the Ryder Cup [and] as well as I played here, I think it shows some of the things I've been working on are coming around."
Furyk said he now plans to take plenty of time off to recharge his batteries. He's planning to play just one tournament between now and February.
"I plan on really getting away for a while and really taking my mind off of golf," Furyk said. "I also plan on really working on some things that I haven't been able to because of the way I've been playing and honing in on different parts of my game that I think I can really improve."
Golfing great Seve Ballesteros, 51, was reportedly in stable condition in a Madrid hospital after having surgery on a brain tumor, according to the Associated Press.
La Paz hospital told the AP that there were no complications from the surgery. Spanish state news agency Efe reported the operation lasted 12 hours and removed a sizeable part of the tumor.
It's not yet known if the tumor was malignant.
"At the moment he is conscious and stable, although he will not be able to receive any visitors in the coming days until he has recovered from the surgical process," the hospital said of Ballesteros in a statement.
Ben Curtis and Brandt Snedeker are scheduled to represent the U.S. in the World Cup, which will be played Thanksgiving week in China.
The Associated Press reported that six other Americans passed on the trip to China to compete in the World Cup. Curtis expressed doubt about participating himself, if he couldn't find the right partner.
Americans have won 23 times since the World Cup began in 1953. However, the last victory came in Argentina in 2000 when Tiger Woods and David Duval teamed up. Last year, Boo Weekley and Heath Slocum lost in a playoff in Scotland.
Mark Calcavecchia will be briefly out of action after having arthroscopic knee surgery Tuesday in Phoenix to repair a torn medial meniscus in his left knee.
Calcavecchia has had five knee surgeries since 1985. The PGA Tour veteran told the Associated Press that it will take as long as six weeks for him to fully recover, but he still plans to team with partner Woody Austin to defend their title in the Merrill Lynch Shootout Dec. 5-9 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort's Tiburon Golf Club in Naples, Fla.
October 16, 2008
Davis Love III, who played the final 57 holes of the Children's Miracle Network Classic without a bogey, finished at 25-under 263 in the season-ending event played at the Walt Disney World Golf Resort in Florida. It has been a long road back for Love, who severely sprained his ankle late last year. After tearing ligaments, he needed surgery, and he's spent much of this year rehabilitating the injury.
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