The PGA Tour finally got it’s season underway on Monday morning after getting Mother Nature to cooperate. The high winds that had plagued the Hyundai Tournament of Champions for the weekend on the Royal Plantation Course at Kapalua, subsided enough to get the first two rounds in the books. Players teed off on both nines at 7:00 AM, and again at 12:30 to finish up two rounds of the event that has been shortened to 54 holes. The final 18 holes will be played Tuesday.
Dustin Johnson fired a -4 under par 69 in the first round, and returned in the afternoon after the wind picked up, and shot a -7 under par 66 while most of the field was going the other direction. Johnson is at -11 under par with a three shot lead over defending champion, Steve Stricker. Stricker had to lay down in the fairway between shots to relieve pain in his leg, but still shot a 67 in the afternoon session, to keep Johnson honest.
You can watch the entire final round with live coverage on the Golf Channel starting at 12:15 Eastern and continuing through until 6:00 PM or the final putt.
Bubba Watson, playing with the leader, shot a 69 in the afternoon session, putting him in third place at -7 under par, and in position if Johnson runs into some trouble in the final round. Keegan Bradley, and FedEx Cup Champ, Brandt Snedeker, are within striking distance at -6 under par in a tie for fourth place. Tommy “Two Gloves” Gainey shot a 69 in the late session to grab sixth place at -5 under par.
After the winds picked up again in the afternoon session, most of the scores went up also. Kyle Stanley, who struggled in the morning session shooting 79, shot a tournament high 80 in the afternoon, relegating him to last place. With scores averaging in the mid 70’s during the second round, Johnson’s stellar play put most of them so far back, they have no chance of winning this event.
Steve Stricker had the shot of the day by holing a 63 yard chip shot for eagle at the par 5 18th hole.
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