Tag Archives: fives

Masters 2013: Bubba Watson sinks hole-in-one in practice round

Fun in the sun at Augusta as defending champion Watson sinks hole-in-one in Masters practice round… and he didn't cry!

By
Charlie Skillen

PUBLISHED:

16:47 GMT, 10 April 2013

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UPDATED:

17:08 GMT, 10 April 2013

Bubba Watson is clearly in top form to defend his green jacket in style after getting a hole-in-one in a practice round today.

Last year's Champion was playing a practice round before the tournament starts tomorrow, and achieved a hole-in-one on Augusta's par 3 16th hole.

Watson's practice partner Scott Piercy described Watson's reaction: 'Arms in the air, big smile, like a little kid in the candy store,' he told the Chicago Tribune.

High fives: Bubba Watson (right) laps up the apprecation of the crowd after sinking a hole-in-one

High fives: Bubba Watson (right) laps up the apprecation of the crowd after sinking a hole-in-one

Mini-me: Watson takes out his driver during a practice round today ahead of defending his Masters title

Mini-me: Watson takes out his driver during a practice round today ahead of defending his Masters title

Turtle and the hare: Sergio Garcia attempts to chase some unwanted visitors back into the pond today

Turtle and the hare: Sergio Garcia attempts to chase some unwanted visitors back into the pond today

'That was really cool. To do it on 16 at the Masters, I'm sure it's something he’ll never forget. And I can tell my kids that Bubba Watson made a hole in one here, and I saw it.'

Watson's caddie, Teddy Scott, told the same paper: 'The crowd was obviously really into it. any time somebody makes a hole-in-one, if there's just four of you playing with your buddies, you're excited. So everybody was pumped and high-fiving. It was cool.'

Ready and waiting: Rory McIlroy plays a shot in today's practice round ahead of the Masters starting tomorrow

Ready and waiting: Rory McIlroy plays a shot in today's practice round ahead of the Masters starting tomorrow

Rory McIlroy

McIlroy

Face in the crowd: Scotsman Paul Lawrie hits a shot from the trees in a practice round today

Face in the crowd: Scotsman Paul Lawrie hits a shot from the trees in a practice round today

The amazing feat comes the day after the Masters Club Dinner in honour of Watson, a tradition started by Ben Hogan in 1952.

Fans leapt to Watson's defence over the menu he chose for the meal, which Sir Nick Faldo joked on Twitter was a 'happy meal'.

Posting a message to Watson, Faldo said: 'You had a year to decide on, grilled chicked, mashed potatoes, corn, macaroni & cheese!!!#HappyMeal #PlayLikeaChampion,' before quoting a Tweet from a fan which suggested diners got a toy prize if they cleaned their plates.

Happy meal: Sir Nick Faldo joked about the quality of Watson's Masters Club Dinner menu

Happy meal: Sir Nick Faldo joked about the quality of Watson's Masters Club Dinner menu

Hitting the target: Argentinean Angel Cabrera chips on the driving range before a practice round today

Hitting the target: Argentinean Angel Cabrera chips on the driving range before a practice round today

Watson broke down in tears in a press conference yesterday after a reporter asked him what he did with the green jacket he won last year.

He also famously cried on the shoulder of his mother Molly when he won the tournament after a play-off with Louis Oosthuizen, leading to the nickname 'Blubba.'

Suits you: Two Australian fans got in on the fun (above) while another fan proposed to his partner (below)

Suits you: Two Australian fans got in on the fun (above) while another fan proposed to his partner (below)

Proposal

Proposal

Fernando Torres scores and doesn"t celebrate

Cheer up, Fernando! Torres scores and doesn't celebrate (has he forgotten how to do that too)

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UPDATED:

22:29 GMT, 5 December 2012

Fernando Torres has struggled for goals of late. But on tonight's evidence, it appears he's forgotten how to celebrate too!

The Spaniard led the line for Chelsea as they dismantled a poor Nordsjaelland outfit at Stamford Bridge, recording Rafael Benitez's first win in the process.

Torres netted himself a brace – his first goals under new manager Benitez – but didn't seem overjoyed at breaking his month-long duck.

Cheer up: Fernando Torres looked glum after scoring Chelsea's second goal

Cheer up: Fernando Torres looked glum after scoring Chelsea's second goal

Serious: Torres scored his first goal in a month

Serious: Torres scored his first goal in a month

Serious: Torres scored his first goal in a month

The former Liverpool striker scored for the first time in more than 12 hours of football after bumbling his way past goalkeeper Jesper Hansen before lifting the ball into the net and doubling Chelsea's lead.

Instead of roaring with excitement after scoring for the first time in a month, the 28-year-old simply jogged back into his own half after a couple of customary high-fives.

Torres may have been keeping in mind the fact that, no matter how big a win they managed over Nordsjaelland, it would all be in vein if Shakhtar failed to beat Juventus in Ukraine.

Juve managed to overcome a dogged Shakhtar at the Donbass Arena, narrowly winning the match 1-0.

The result catapulted the Italian champions into first place in Group E, leaving Shakhtar in second and dumping holders Chelsea out of the Champions League and into the Europa League.

Chin up: Torres scored two goals but Chelsea crashed out of the Champions League

Chin up: Torres scored two goals but Chelsea crashed out of the Champions League

That might be why... Juventus sealed Chelsea's fate by topping Group E in Ukraine

That might be why… Juventus sealed Chelsea's fate by topping Group E in Ukraine

Barcelona v Celtic preview – Johan Cruyff on Tito Vilanova and Lionel Messi

Judge Vilanova when something goes wrong, says Barca legend Cruyff ahead of Celtic's date with Messi

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UPDATED:

07:17 GMT, 22 October 2012

Celtic have certainly made an impression. Not enough for Johan Cruyff to give them much of a chance against his beloved Barca, mind. But they’ve definitely registered a blip on the great man’s radar.

Pleased initially by their return to the Champions League proper, he has noted with some pleasure their first ever away win in the richest club competition on the planet; victory in Moscow is hailed as a real sign of progress.

If Cruyff is just being polite, the niceties stop at the prospect of Celtic emerging unscathed from Tuesday night’s fixture at the home of a Barcelona team who still make the famously arch-Dutchman break into a smile of unbridled joy. ‘Always,’ he says, flashing a grin to emphasise the point.

Unstoppable: Lionel Messi celebrates after completing his hat-trick against Deportivo La Coruna

Unstoppable: Lionel Messi celebrates after completing his hat-trick against Deportivo La Coruna

High fives: Messi celebrates with Cesc Fabregas in Barcelona's latest triumph

High fives: Messi celebrates with Cesc Fabregas in Barcelona's latest triumph

Cruyff, the free spirit whose revolutionary genius remains imprinted on the soul of Barcelona, has certainly not fallen out of love with the Team That Pep Built.

Is there just a flicker of darkness, though, when the old King of the Nou Camp is invited to shower praise upon the new heir to the throne Might there be a suggestion that Barca boss Tito Vilanova, the former right-hand man promoted to replace Cruyff protg Pep Guardiola in the summer, is yet to convince the most keen-eyed critic in Catalonia If so, it will be pounced upon as a sign of hope by all seeking something — a miracle, preferably — to lift Scottish football out of its current gloom and misery.

Declaring his admiration for the work done by Neil Lennon to date, Cruyff seems almost overjoyed at Celtic’s return to the big league, telling Sportsmail: ‘It is good, first of all, for a Scottish team to be playing at this level. Seriously, that is a big step for a country that has struggled for a long time.

So far, so good: Tito Vilanova has guided Barcelona to the top of the table

So far, so good: Tito Vilanova has guided Barcelona to the top of the table

‘I have watched as Scottish teams did just what the Dutch clubs did, wasting money on foreign players who did not improve the league, did not improve the competitive environment — and then they wondered why the European success did not always follow.

‘Now, I know Celtic have bought wisely and they have developed some of their own players. That is why they are back at this level.

‘And it was a big result in Moscow. A lot of very big clubs would struggle with that fixture away to Spartak — but they showed something by going to Russia and winning.

‘It’s impossible, of course, to say how they will progress from here. Barcelona are the favourites but, beyond that, the group is open.

‘Normally, Barcelona has a much better team than Celtic. If everything is as it should be, then Barcelona win every time.

Job well done: Scott Brown and Celtic celebrate their win in Moscow

Job well done: Scott Brown and Celtic celebrate their win in Moscow

‘But there are things a coach can do, things players can do, to make the gap less. Celtic have to work very hard and believe that they can achieve something.’

Informed that former Celtic manager Gordon Strachan had joked about visiting the nearest church as the best pre-match plan when facing Barca, Cruyff laughed as he replied: ‘Maybe he’s right! But there is always something you can do as a player or as a manager to close the gap.’

The importance of the manager is a subject under much discussion at home and abroad these days, with some arguing that his influence is almost entirely dependent on the players at his disposal.

In which case, Vilanova should have no problem in repeating the success of former boss Guardiola. With the same team, more or less, as his predecessor, the same results and performances should follow. It’s a nice theory.

Despite the hammer blows they suffered at home and abroad last season, their Liga title lost to Real Madrid, while the blunt instrument of Chelsea did for their Champions League hopes, it still feels almost heretical to question Barcelona.

The man they need to stop: Lionel Messi is the dangerman for Barca

The man they need to stop: Lionel Messi is the dangerman for Barca

Two wins out of two at the start of this Champions League campaign suggests that all is well with the greatest team in history, a team back on top in the domestic table and well clear of putative challengers Real.

Even ahead of Saturday night’s shipping of four goals in a 5-4 victory at Deportivo, those who study the minutiae of performance have become alarmed by a perceived easing of the pressing game as vital to Barca as their famed passing carousel.

There is a lack of width, Vilanova’s failure to by a central defender in the close season has been exposed as reckless, while Lionel Messi is said to be indulged to a potentially dangerous degree. Although it has to be said that the latter doesn’t appear to be affecting the wee genius, not going by his hat-trick against Deportivo.

Cruyff, the man who lifted Barca to great heights as first the greatest player of his era and then as a manager touched with a kind of dramatic genius, says of Vilanova: ‘Everything is going great for him now, just as we all expected. He knew the players, he knows the club very well, he helped Guardiola and was a part of a successful management team.

In good form: Celtic striker Gary Hooper helped his side to a 5-0 win away at St Mirren

In good form: Celtic striker Gary Hooper helped his side to a 5-0 win away at St Mirren

‘But this is not the time to judge him as a manager. The time to judge him is when something goes wrong. When things don’t work out, when there is a crisis, that’s when you know if the coach is capable.’

If you detect a lack of warmth there, you’re not imagining things. The way in which Vilanova took the job, initially having promised to leave with Pep — who was believed to be considered by the English FA at one point — will rankle with Cruyff, whose own experience of seeing assistant Charly Reixach stay on when the Dutchman was himself sacked, remains a sore point; he still doesn’t speak to his former friend.

Neither is Cruyff a supporter of Barca president Sandro Rossell, to put it mildly. The pair are as close as you’d find to sworn enemies, so Vilanova — who left Barca as a player when the Dutchman was boss, having received an unsatisfactory answer to a ‘play me or sell me’ plea — won’t earn many points for throwing his lot in with the new regime.

Last time out: Barcelona beat Celtic twice in the group stages of the Champions League in 2008

Last time out: Barcelona beat Celtic twice in the group stages of the Champions League in 2008

But mostly the gloriously gifted Cruyff, whose arrival as the world’s first million-dollar footballer in 1973 inspired a generation, seems concerned about the football.

A man whose favourite sayings include: ‘If I wanted you to understand I would have explained it better’, had to change the entire philosophy of Barca when he returned as manager in 1988, implementing a tweaked version of the total football that still holds sway today. Any possibility of change to that is bound to provoke a reaction.

For all of the whispered doubts and hints of concern, though, Cruyff — who spoke to Sportsmail during his recent appearance in the Dunhill Links Championship — still gets a kick out of watching this group of players do their thing.

Asked if they still make him smile, the man who inspired his own ‘Dream Team’ to Liga and European Cup glory, says: ‘Always. Always they make me smile, make me very happy.

No comparison: Cruyff won't compare the Barcelona of today with the side he managed in the 1990s

No comparison: Cruyff won't compare the Barcelona of today with the side he managed in the 1990s

‘There is no point in comparing them with the team I managed — I never compare, it is silly to try. All I can say is we had some fantastic players doing incredible things — and this team has some fantastic players doing incredible things.

‘Messi is the star, of course. But he only plays so well because he has Iniesta, Xavi or Fabregas to help him — look at the difference when he plays with Argentina, when the supporting quality is not there. But Messi is in a different league, on a different planet.’

Earthbound sides are occasionally allowed to visit Planet Barca, with the recent changes to the Champions League — making it easier for national champions from smaller markets to make the group stages — opening up the opportunity for more to experience the exquisite agony of taking on the best in the world.

‘It’s difficult to say that changing something like this makes it immediately possible for teams from smaller countries to succeed,’ said Cruyff, addressing the revamped qualification system.

‘So much depends on the individual clubs. Are they ready to make the jump It is one thing being given an invitation to play in the Champions League, another thing to make an impression once you get there.’

Lennon’s men have put a dent in the competition already, their four points from the opening two fixtures giving them a decent platform. Even if most expect them to be stuck on the same total after match days three and four, with Barcelona fancied to beat Scotland’s champions home and away.

Get so much as a point from those two fixtures, and they’ll have more than impressed one keen, cultured and indisputably qualified observer already taking admiring notice of their efforts.

Mark Cavendish wins stage five of Giro d"Italia

Kids play! Cavendish back on the podium with daughter Delaila

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UPDATED:

16:29 GMT, 10 May 2012

British rider Mark Cavendish won stage five of the Giro d'Italia in a close finish in Fano on Thursday.

The Team Sky man produced a powerful sprint to edge out Australian Matt Goss of the Orica GreenEdge team and Italian Daniele Bennati of Radioshack Nissan.

High fives: Mark Cavendish celebrates stage win with his daughter Delaila

High fives: Mark Cavendish celebrates stage win with his daughter Delaila

All three were credited with the same time of four hours, 43 minutes and 15 seconds for the ride from Modena.

For world road race champion Cavendish it was his second stage success of this year's Giro, following his win in the second leg of the event, and the ninth of his career in the flagship Italian tour.

Three days ago, before the riders had a rest day, he suffered bruising and a gashed leg when he was involved in a pile-up caused by Roberto Ferrari in the closing moments of the third stage.

Back with a bang: Cavendish celebrates stage win

Back with a bang: Cavendish celebrates stage win

Cavendish's latest victory was spurred by
strong support from his Team Sky colleagues over the closing
kilometres, with Rigoberto Uran and Bernhard Eisel the first to shepherd
him before Peter Kennaugh and Geraint Thomas took over for the final
sprint.

Cavendish stands fifth in the overall standings, a place ahead of
Thomas, with the pink jersey still belonging to Garmin Barracuda's
Lithuanian rider Ramunas Navardauskas, who leads the way from team-mates
Robert Hunter and Ryder Hesjedal.

Just pucker: Lithuanian rider Ramunas Navardauskas on the podium after retaining the leader's pink jersey

Just pucker: Lithuanian rider Ramunas Navardauskas on the podium after retaining the leader's pink jersey

More to follow

South Africa cruise to victory against Sri Lanka in first Test

Philander makes light work of Sri Lanka as South Africa cruise to victory in first Test

Vernon Philander furthered his growing reputation as South Africa thumped Sri Lanka by an innings and 81 runs in the first Test at Centurion on Saturday.

Philander completed the wide-margin victory with his 10th wicket of the match as Sri Lanka were skittled for 150 to lose inside three days.

High fives: South Africa

High fives: South Africa”s Vernon Philander celebrates the dismissal of Sri Lanka captain Tillakaratne Dilshan

South Africa v Sri Lanka

Click here for a full scorecard

After taking five wickets in the first innings, Philander followed it up with figures of five for 49 as Sri Lanka”s batsmen capitulated for the second time in the match.

It was Philander”s fourth five-wicket haul, in just his third Test, and with Dale Steyn the 26-year-old is fast forming one of the most threatening new-ball partnerships.

After South Africa were eventually bowled out for 411 early on Saturday morning, when Mark Boucher edged behind off Chanaka Welegedara, Philander immediately got to work.

Easy pickings: Mark Boucher celebrates reaching a half century

Easy pickings: Mark Boucher celebrates reaching a half century

The right-armer removed Tillakaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara, both caught by wicketkeeper Boucher, with the new ball as Sri Lanka crashed to four for 37.

Boucher , who took six catches in the innings, was in the action again when Steyn located the edge of opener Tharanga Paranavitana”s bat before Jacques Kallis ran out Mahela Jayawardene.

The tourists” miserable start was made worse as Jayawardene was caught short attempting the run that would have made him the first Sri Lankan to reach 10,000 Test runs.

Thilan Samaraweera and Angelo Mathews briefly stopped the flow of wickets, in a 29-run stand, but Philander was in inspired form and he produced a delivery that left Mathews just enough to catch the edge and fly through to Boucher.

Four balls later Samaraweera followed, edging yet another catch to Boucher off Morne Morkel, to depart for 32.

The wickets continued to tumble before Philander wrapped things up when he removed the final two to complete his 10-wicket haul.

He first held on to a catch off his own bowling after Welegedara top-edged an ambitious slog before finishing matters when, fittingly, he had Rangana Herath caught by Boucher.