GOLF NOTES Bubba wants to be at Pres­i­dents Cup as an as­sis­tant

Manila Times - - Golf - BY DOUG FER­GU­SON

NAS­SAU, Ba­hamas: Bubba Wat­son ends the year at No. 12 in the Pres­i­dents Cup stand­ings, and his mis­sion is to be at Royal Mel­bourne one year from now. But not nec­es­sar­ily as a player. Wat­son was asked dur­ing the Hero World Chal­lenge what would make a good 2019, and he didn’t hes­i­tate.

“I have been bug­ging Mr. Tiger Woods about be­ing a vice cap­tain for Aus­tralia,” Wat­son said. “I would love the honor of do­ing that again. The rea­son why is I feel like I can ser­vice. For me per­son­ally, I have more en­joy­ment serv­ing 12 guys than play­ing.” He has ex­pe­ri­ence in that role. Wat­son was No. 7 in the world rank­ing, and No. 9 in the Ry­der Cup stand­ings, when he was left off the team. Davis Love III wound up bring­ing him to Hazel­tine as an­other vice cap­tain, and Wat­son thrived in his role.

Wat­son, whose 12 vic­to­ries on the PGA Tour in­clude two Mas­ters and two World Golf Cham­pi­onships, has played on only two Pres­i­dents Cup teams (5-3-2 record), com­pared with four Ry­der Cup teams.

“I al­ways bug Tiger,” Wat­son said. “He says, ‘You need to be play­ing.’ I said, ‘Look, man, we’ve never won a Ry­der Cup with me play­ing, but we’ve won when I wasn’t play­ing. So me and you need to be cap­tain and vice cap­tains.’ That’s our joke. I’ve told him, ‘Lis­ten, I’ll do any­thing to help you if you want me. If you don’t, that’s fine.’” out of re­spect to the ti­tle de­fense. This year isn’t much bet­ter. Be­cause of the more com­pact PGA Tour sched­ule to fin­ish ahead of foot­ball sea­son, the Tour Cham­pi­onship will be held Aug. 22-25. Just his luck, that’s the same week as his home­town event now called the Scan­di­na­vian In­vi­ta­tional.

“I will be play­ing golf that week. Where it’s go­ing to be, I can’t tell you,” Sten­son said. “In a way, I hope it’s go­ing to be at East Lake. But if that doesn’t come to fruition, I will be play­ing in Gothen­burg, Swe­den, that week.”

That’s about the time Sten­son’s fam­ily re­turns to Amer­ica. They live in Or­lando, Flor­ida, and when the three chil­dren get out of school in late May, they head to their sum­mer home in Swe­den for 10 weeks. That’s where Sten­son makes his base when he plays. He typ­i­cally will spend three weeks in Swe­den af­ter the U.S. Open, and a cou­ple of weeks af­ter the Bri­tish Open.

But they rarely get home for the hol­i­days, for good rea­son. Sten­son says the weather around Christ­mas in south­ern Swe­den typ­i­cally is in the mid-30s with gray con­di­tions and rain.

“That’s why we’ve been skiing in Utah,” he said.

Sten­son and wife Emma, who had to choose as a girl be­tween skiing and golf (she played at South Car­olina), have gone skiing in Swe­den since 2012. Be­fore that, they went skiing in­doors near their home in Dubai be­cause they were just start­ing to teach their old­est daugh­ter, Lisa.

“So I’ve been skiing in Utah, Swe­den and Dubai,” Sten­son said, paus­ing to smile be­fore ad­ding, “and al­most Tuc­son.”

That would be Tuc­son, Ari­zona, where the open­ing round in

2013 was post­poned by snow.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.