Mark's Feed
Apr 2, 2015

Ko in early contention at Mission Hills

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – World number one Lydia Ko moved into contention for the ANA Inspiration in record-equalling style on Thursday as South Korea’s Choi Na-yeon seized a share of the early lead in the opening round.

New Zealander Ko, watched by the biggest galleries of the day, battled strong winds on her front nine before grinding out a one-under-par 71 at a sun-baked Mission Hills Country Club to equal an LPGA Tour record for sub-par scores.

Apr 2, 2015

LPGA Commissioner Whan eyes a ‘grander stage’

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – Since taking over as LPGA Commissioner in 2010, Mike Whan has weathered the end of an economic downturn and put the women’s tour on a strong financial footing by adding new sponsors and events.

However, Whan has never been a big fan of the status quo and has set his sights on establishing a “grander stage” for the LPGA Tour by giving it increased television exposure and making it more on a par with the men’s equivalent for prize money.

Apr 2, 2015

Ko ties LPGA record for consecutive sub-scores

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – New Zealand’s Lydia Ko battled strong winds on her front nine before grinding out a one-under-par 71 in the ANA Inspiration first round on Thursday to equal an LPGA Tour record for sub-par scores.

The world number one took advantage of calmer conditions after the turn with two late birdies, covering her last nine holes in two-under 34 to match Hall of Famer Annika Sorenstam’s run of 29 consecutive rounds under par on the circuit.

Apr 2, 2015

Ice-cool Ko aims to have fun at Mission Hills

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – New Zealand’s Lydia Ko has been exposed to increased expectation and much bigger crowds since becoming world number one but, so far, the 17-year-old is handling it all with remarkable poise.

This week, the South Korea-born golfing prodigy heads into the first women’s major of the season with a chance to break Annika Sorenstam’s run of 29 consecutive rounds under par on the LPGA Tour.

Apr 1, 2015

Mission Hills fan Lewis targets a third major win

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – Eight years ago, Stacy Lewis was an amateur when she tied for fifth at Mission Hills Country Club in the first women’s major of the season, a tournament she has grown to love.

In 2011, the American overhauled the world number one Yani Tseng in the final round at Mission Hills to claim her first major crown, and this week she will be bidding to extend her career tally of grand slam wins to three.

Apr 1, 2015

Korean Park back at happy hunting ground

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – Park In-bee returns to one of her most successful venues for this week’s ANA Inspiration at Mission Hills Country Club where two years ago she won her second major title with a “nearly perfect” display.

Park was the overnight leader heading into the final round in 2013 and was never threatened after she birdied the first two holes on the way to a commanding four-stroke victory.

Mar 31, 2015

Ko’s consistency a major topic at Mission Hills

RANCHO MIRAGE, California (Reuters) – World number one Lydia Ko has yet to win a major title but the 17-year-old prodigy has already achieved so much in golf that she enters this week’s ANA Inspiration envied by many of her rivals.

The richly talented New Zealander has landed six LPGA titles and her astonishingly consistent game has helped her shoot under par for 28 consecutive rounds, one shy one of the record set by former world number one Annika Sorenstam in 2004.

Mar 27, 2015

Woods skips Houston Open as Masters doubts spiral

By Mark Lamport-Stokes

(Reuters) – As speculation mounts over whether Tiger Woods will compete at the Masters, the former world number one has spurned the chance to play in next week’s Houston Open, the final PGA Tour event before the year’s first major.

Woods’ name was conspicuously absent when the list of players for the April 2-5 Houston event was posted on Friday.

Mar 27, 2015

U.S. game will flourish after Serena: WTA leader

By Mark Lamport-Stokes

(Reuters) – Just as American writer Mark Twain described premature reports about his death as “greatly exaggerated”, doom and gloom about U.S. women’s tennis is way off the mark, according to WTA chairman and CEO Stacey Allaster.

While some pundits question the future of the American game after world number one Serena Williams’ stellar career ends, Allaster oozes optimism about the country’s emerging prospects on the WTA Tour.

Mar 27, 2015

Tennis-U.S. game will flourish after Serena-WTA leader

March 26 (Reuters) – Just as American writer Mark Twain described premature reports about his death as “greatly exaggerated”, doom and gloom about U.S. women’s tennis is way off the mark, according to WTA chairman and CEO Stacey Allaster.

While some pundits question the future of the American game after world number one Serena Williams’ stellar career ends, Allaster oozes optimism about the country’s emerging prospects on the WTA Tour.