MONTREAL - It was the splash heard 'round the golf course, and after the day was done, Vijay Singh called over to Woody Austin and said, "Hey, I gave it only an eight."
Singh was scoring Austin's "dive" into the water on the 448-yard par-4 14th Friday at the Presidents Cup.
Austin hooked his drive into the water, where it came to rest just below the surface, near the bank. Austin, in black rain pants, waded in and opted to play.
"The idea was to get it to the bank," he said.
Instead, after a great swat, Austin stumbled back and - he explained later - slipped on a rock, forcing him to dive head first into the hazard.
It was a little comic relief on a day that wasn't so funny for the Americans.
No one tried to contain his laughter. The camera flashed to Jim Furyk, walking with the American team, to find his face hidden behind his hat.
Said American Captain Jack Nicklaus, "I have a feeling that he'll be hearing about that for the rest of his life."
But Austin, always the character, just shrugged. "I don't think I looked any worse than I always do," he said. "Scotty [Verplank] says I smell different. But I think I look just as ugly as I always do."
Singh improved his career record in four-ball competition to 7-5-1. He is now tied with Davis Love III for the most four-ball matches won at the Presidents Cup (seven).
He is vying for an unofficial record for the most hole-outs in a single tournament: He had two on Friday, and one on Thursday.
Tiger Woods, who with Furyk lost to Singh and partner Stuart Appleby, continues to struggle in four-ball competition. Woods' four-ball record is now 2-7-0, which is the most losses in that format in Presidents Cup history (Frank Nobilo, Nick Price and Singh are next, with five).
Furyk saw his streak of seven straight four-ball wins end with that loss.
The last time Steve Stricker was in the Presidents Cup was in 1996, and with his win today he earned his first point since Sept. 15 of that year, when he defeated Robert Allenby 6 and 5 in Sunday singles. His career Presidents Cup record is now 4-3-0.
Canadian Mike Weir is the crowd favorite this week, which is bringing him maybe more attention than he's used to.
Four years ago in South Africa, International Team member Ernie Els was the hometown favorite. So, he knows what Weir's going through.
"We spoke about it today, and I said four years ago I was in the same boat," Els said. "You're nervous when you get to the first tee, but if you can get it off ok on the first tee, you're ok."
September 29, 2007
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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