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New Zealand Listener - - THAT’SENTERTAINMENT -

GOLF The run-up to the Ryder Cup, the bi­en­nial show­down be­tween US and Euro­pean golf, has be­come al­most as news­wor­thy as the tour­na­ment it­self in re­cent years. As the Daily Tele­graph har­rumphed this month, the job of the re­spec­tive team cap­tains “can be ac­corded roughly the same rev­er­ence as Sec­re­tary-Gen­eral of the United Na­tions”, es­pe­cially when it comes to their wild-card picks. This year’s event is no ex­cep­tion. When US cap­tain Jim Furyk named Tony Finau as his fi­nal cap­tain’s choice, it was an­other mile­stone for the Ton­gan-Samoan PGA Tour player and an oc­ca­sion for feel-good head­lines all over the golf­ing press. The nearly 2m-tall Finau learned his game with a cou­ple of op-shop clubs his fa­ther bought, and by 17 was good enough to turn down sev­eral of­fers of col­lege bas­ket­ball schol­ar­ships to be­come a pro golfer. The pre­lim­i­nar­ies give way to the golf it­self on Fri­day, when live cov­er­age of match­play be­gins ( Sky Sport 3, 6pm). The US team em­phat­i­cally ended a run of Euro­pean vic­to­ries in 2016, but that was on an Amer­i­can course. Can they re­peat the trick this year at the Al­ba­tros course near Paris?

DARTS

The BBC’s 2016 de­ci­sion to end a 40-year re­la­tion­ship with the Bri­tish Darts Or­gan­i­sa­tion in favour of a new tour­na­ment run by the ri­val Pro­fes­sional Darts Cor­po­ra­tion shook up the sport of throw­ing small pointed mis­siles at a cir­cu­lar tar­get. But the new con­test – fea­tur­ing the top eight PDC play­ers – has taken off. In the open­ing 2018 game ( Sky Sport Pop-Up 1, Sun­day, 9am), 2017 win­ner Men­sur Suljović faces world cham­pion Rob Cross.

Rob Cross

Tony Finau

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