Notebook: Singh misses the cut by 4 shots
HARRISON, N.Y. (AP) Vijay Singh missed the cut Friday in The Barclays, squandering a good opportunity to pass Tiger Woods in the FedEx Cup standings.
Singh, No. 2 behind the absent Woods in the playoff standings, followed his opening 75 with a 71 to finish at 4 over four strokes off the cut line.
Seeking his second straight Westchester Country Club victory and fourth overall, the 44-year-old Fijian also missed the cut two weeks ago in the PGA Championship. He last missed consecutive cuts at the end of the 2005 season.
"In one way I'm disappointed, but in another I'd rather be out there working on my game than just trying to play here and playing poorly," Singh said. "So, I'm looking forward to the next few days, because I can go home and practice and fix my game.
"It's close, but it needs to be closer. I'm going to be ready come next week."
Singh finished the regular season 11,445 points behind Woods, but that margin was cut to 1,000 when the points were re-set entering The Barclays.
Two other players in the top 10 in the standings No. 8 Charles Howell III and No. 9 Brandt Snedeker also missed the cut. Howell shot two 75s. Snedeker, coming off his first PGA Tour victory Sunday in the Wyndham Championship, had rounds of 72 and 73.
ELIMINATED: Ten players were eliminated from the playoffs Friday, leaving 130 in the running for the $10 million deferred prize.
The top 120 after The Barclays will be eligible for the Deutsche Bank Championship next week in Norton, Mass. The field will then be cut to 70 for the BMW Championship in Lemont, Ill., and to 30 for the Tour Championship at East Lake in Atlanta.
No. 122 Alex Cejka missed the cut along with No. 124 John Merrick, No. 136 Billy Andrade, No. 137 Anders Hansen, No. 138 Jesper Parnevik, No. 140 Shigeki Maruyama, No. 141 Michael Putnam, No. 142 Bob Tway and No. 144 Jeff Gove, while No. 135 Tripp Isenhour withdrew because of back pain after nine holes Friday.
No. 126 Jason Bohn (rib injury) and No. 133 Ryan Palmer (family illness) dropped out of the playoffs before the tournament started. No. 130 Gavin Coles withdrew during the first round because of back pain. No. 59 Bernhard Langer is skipping the series.
Four players No. 121 Doug LaBelle II, No. 127 Johnson Wagner, No. 128 Jason Dufner and No. 132 Bob Heintz made the cut by a stroke to avoid elimination.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Rich Beem opened his entertaining media session with a round of "Happy Birthday" to himself on his 37th birthday.
The 2002 PGA Championship winner, two strokes behind leader K.J. Choi after rounds of 64 and 68, is 134th in the FedEx Cup standings, with only the top 120 advancing to the Deutsche Bank Championship.
"I know that unless I play well, I'm going home. And I don't want to go home," Beem said. "No offense to my wife or kids or anything, but when you're playing well, you want to stay on the road."
And what about tweaking the FedEx Cup format?
"I'm going to have to sit down and order a few beers and think about it, because that's when I really get smart," Beem said.
SUPER GRIP: Second-round leader K.J. Choi was watching TV a few months ago when an informercial for an oversized putting grip caught his attention.
After initially hesitating to use the "Super Stroke" grip in competition, he used it last month in his AT&T National victory and has kept it in play.
"Because the grip is thick, it's fat, it naturally makes you use the shoulders," Choi said. "I thought it made sense, so I picked up the phone and I ordered it. It did look ridiculously big, but I practiced with it and I felt like it was working for me. I still hesitated to take it out to a tournament because of how big it was.
"The week before the AT&T National, I decided to take it and practice with it on the greens there and I still felt the same consistent feeling, the positive feeling. So, I made a big decision to use it during the tournament, and it just worked very well and exactly as I thought."
Jim Furyk used one for the first time in competition Thursday, but went back to a normal-sized grip Friday.
STRICKER RETURNS: Steve Stricker, four strokes behind after consecutive 67s, tied for 60th at 8 over in 1995 in his only previous Westchester Country Club start.
"I told my wife, "Take a picture. We're not coming back,"' Stricker said.
"I'm here because this is one of the playoff events. If it wasn't one of the playoff events, I don't know if I would be here. I just have bad memories about when I played here back in '95, I guess. Obviously, if you ask me now, I want to come back. I'm in good position and I like this style of course.
"Maybe I just wasn't hitting it that well in '95 and it just kind of left a bad taste in my mouth. I do like it. It's a great old-style course."
ROAD RAGE: The fourth green was damaged during the night when someone drove a golf cart across the back right portion of the putting surface.
Tour officials planned to place the pin in that area, but were forced to move it to the middle of the green. Tire marks also were visible in the mud on a steep slope on the side of the adjacent fifth tee.
DIVOTS: Rich Beem leads the field in putting average per green reached in regulation at 1.5 after entering the week tied for 136th at 1.803. He's tied for third in overall putts per round at 27. ... In the 40 previous tournaments at Westchester, only 12 players who held at least a share of the 36-hole lead have gone on to win. ... Vijay Singh is the ninth defending champion to miss a cut this year.