Fairways And Roughs Title

Cink turns back the clock; trio tied for the lead in Memphis

By PGA Tour News
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Notes and observations from the second round of the FedEx St. Jude Classic, where Chez Reavie fired a bogey-free 65 to get to 9 under, then watched as unheralded Colombian Sebastian Munoz (67) and Charl Schwartzel (66) tied him at the top. Stewart Cink, enjoying a career revival at age 44, shot 68 to get to 8 under, just a shot off the lead. For more coverage from TPC Southwind, click here for the Daily Wrap-up. CINK DIALS UP WAY-BACK MACHINE Stewart Cink is seeking his first victory since the 2009 Open Championship, the one in which he beat the suddenly-young-again 59-year-old Tom Watson in a playoff at Turnberry. So you might think Cink looks back on ’09 as a high-water mark in his career. The six-time TOUR winner says that isn’t so. “Going back to 2009, you know, if you really examine that year closely, I won the British but the rest of the year wasn't all that spectacular,” Cink said, when asked when was the last time he felt this good about his game. “So going back to 2008 probably, the first half of '08, and I really, really felt good about my game and I felt like I had a chance to win a lot of tournaments. “I feel like if I can just hang in there and stay within myself and not get too ahead of myself with the results, then I've got a chance here, too.” It’s been a banner year for Cink in more ways than one in 2017. Most importantly his wife Lisa’s cancer is in sustained remission, but Stewart’s game has been robust, too. After making 14 cuts in 18 starts this season, including top-10s at The RSM Classic and DEAN & DELUCA Invitational and six other top-25 finishes, he came into this week at 60th in the FedExCup. On Monday, he got through sectional qualifying for the U.S. Open at Erin Hills.   What’s more, he is right at home in Memphis, quite possibly America’s best barbecue town—a fact that is not lost on Cink, who enters his own recipes in competitions. He planned to call fellow barbecue aficionado Davis Love III and perhaps hit up his favorite spot Friday night. Life is sweet, and a victory Sunday would be even sweeter. SOUTH AFRICANS LOVING MEMPHIS Maybe it’s just a coincidence, but South African countrymen Ernie Els, Retief Goosen and Charl Schwartzel—who have seven major titles between them—are loving TPC Southwind. Schwartzel leads the way (66, T1), but Goosen (68, T6) is only three off the lead. Then there’s 47-year-old Els, who has had a tough year, making just four cuts in 14 starts coming into this week, but who fired a second-round 69 to get to 3 under par, well inside the cut line here. “I’ve been putting well for a while,” said Schwartzel, who is first in strokes gained: putting this week after making 220 feet of putts. “Just some weeks you see the lines better than other weeks. You know, this week I can really see the breaks well, and my speed’s good.” At 74th in the FedExCup, Schwartzel is looking to build on a season-best third at the Masters and a sixth-place finish in his title defense at the Valspar Championship earlier this year. With the U.S. Open looming next week, he says he couldn’t pick a better time to heat up. “That’s the ultimate in our sport, is to win majors and peak for those tournaments,” he said. “Whichever way suits you to do that, this is what you must do.” MICKELSON RUN STALLS Still looking for his first victory since the 2013 Open Championship, Phil Mickelson got hot and was hovering around the lead at 7 under par, sending a jolt of excitement around the course. Then he bogeyed the fifth and sixth holes and hit his approach shot into the water to double-bogey the ninth, his last hole of the day, for a dispiriting 67 to drop to 4 under. At five off the lead, he is tied for 18th place and will need a banner weekend. “Yeah, it's a disappointing way to finish the round,” said Mickelson, who hit 11 of 14 fairways Friday after hitting just five in the first round. “I made a poor swing there and made double, but I hit a lot of really good shots today and had a chance to shoot something really low, and unfortunately didn't get the score out of it, but it was encouraging that I played really well.” ODDS AND ENDS Chez Reavie hit 14 of 18 greens in regulation and is first in the field this week in proximity to the hole on approach shots (23 feet, 2 inches). He has twice led through 36 holes, once at the 2008 RBC Canadian Open, which he won for his first and only TOUR victory, and agains and the 2011 John Deere Classic, where he tied for fifth. … Adam Scott shot the round of the day, a 6-under 64, to get to -5 and T11 going into the weekend. He ranks first in strokes gained: off the tee, first in driving distance (301.4 yards) and first in strokes gained: tee to green. His only weakness so far has been his usual Achilles heel, putting, where his strokes gained number is -2.589 (82nd in the field). … Those at 1 over or better made it to the weekend, although a second cut will come Saturday. Notable names to miss the 36-hole cut included Rickie Fowler (74-70), who was coming off a runner-up finish at the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide and came into the week eighth on the FedExCup points list, and Byrson DeChambeau (69-73). … This is the second time Charl Schwartzel has held the 36-hole lead/co-lead in 154 TOUR starts. He was tied for first at the 2011 Dell Technologies Championship but finished T21. … Munoz, 24, would become the 14th different player under 30 to win on TOUR this season. To date, 13 different players have accounted for 16 wins. … Ben Crane, a five-time TOUR winner, came into the week 160th in the FedExCup and ready to try something completely different. Crane, the 2014 FedEx St. Jude champion, decided to celebrate like the former professional wrestler Ric Flair after every made putt. “We’re going two claps and a Ric Flair after you make a putt,” he said. “So you go (clap, clap) whoo!” CALL OF THE DAY SHOT OF THE DAY BEST OF SOCIAL MEDIA

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