- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 18, 2002

Perhaps the most bizarre sight at weather-wracked Hazeltine yesterday was the pond formerly known as the driving range. After more than three inches of rain fell on the course overnight, work crews pumped 60,000 gallons of water out of bunkers and other low-lying areas on the course. But the range received last priority, meaning it looked like Minnesota lake No. 10,001 when the players arrived to warm up. Players were still allowed to hit balls, but the range had to be manually picked by staff members in waders.

Did you see Tiger's second-round shot on No.18 yesterday morning? If you didn't, you missed the most unbelievable play of his career. After smother-hooking his drive, Woods found himself 211 yards from the green and facing a nasty lie from a bunker in an adjacent fairway. The ball was well below his feet, he barely had room to take a stance with the trap's lip right against his calves and, of course, the wind was howling from left to right. The lie had low and right written all over it, but Woods hit a 3-iron high and left, over a 50-foot stand of trees and within 20 feet of the pin.
"It was one of the all-time best shots that I've made," said Woods, who naturally made the birdie putt to finish his second round 4 under for the tournament. "It was a lot of luck and some really good timing."

The Rover considered heading into Minneapolis last night for the National Poetry Slam. What could be more fun than hissing at no-life morons who consider their sub-rap medium worthy of a national competition?


Alas, Gov.Jesse Ventura hosted a night at the horse races for the Fourth Estate, and the Rover couldn't resist. He has waited years to question Ventura about his starring role in the cinematic stunner "Abraxas, Guardian of the Universe."

Friday night leader Fred Funk fell prey to golf's dumbest rule. Funk, then a co-leader at 6 under, drove into a left-hand fairway bunker filled with standing water. Funk's ball was submerged in the bottom of the bunker. If the bunker had not been flooded, his shot would have been very simple. But when he had to take relief from the water, the shot became virtually impossible.
The nearest point of relief no closer to the hole was against the back lip of the bunker. Not only did Funk get a bad lie after dropping, he also had no stance, condemning him to a hack-out bogey. A rule is not intended to completely alter a shot's value exactly, the opposite. The USGA definitely needs to change the relief rule to include an exception for flooded bunkers.
Barker Davis

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