Friday, September 25, 2009

Playing crazy eights at the Tour Championship

I'm not one of those who takes pleasure in watching PGA Tour players chop it around like Murray the bartender on the golf course.

If I want to see double bogeys, I can play golf myself.

Let me see them work magic. Let them hole bunker shots, and hit 180-yard 7-irons. Let them make more putts in a day than most of us make in a month.

But it does a heart good to see them make an eight once in a while.

Eights have been in vogue recently on the tour. You may rememeber Padraig Harrington making an eight to end his duel with Tiger Woods in the WGC-American Express Championship last month.

Here at East Lake, Phil Mickelson made a snowman on Thursday when his otherworldly short game look third worldly. Lefty bladed a bunker shot over the green, bladed his pitch shot back over the green into the same bunker, he left the next one in the sand and made an eight the way the rest of us make them.

On Friday, Stewart Cink was tied for the lead until he started hitting big, ugly hooks off the 1oth tee. Cink roped one driver out of bounds, teed up another, and did the same thing. Nothing if not persistent, Cink hit a third driver and it turned left but not far enough to fly the green fence along the property line.

By the time he was finished, Cink had made an eight and fallen four shots behind the leaders.

It didn't take long for someone to call him Ocho-Cink-O. Wish I could take credit for it but I can't. But I can pass it along.