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Truth and Rumors: Tiger's instincts clashed with Stevie's advice at Pebble

In a year when Tiger's lost his marriage, his coach and a whole bunch of endorsement dollars, you'd think he'd be keen to keep one his most successful relationships in tact. However, as Hank Gola of The Daily News reports, Tiger openly hinted in a post-round interview on Sunday that advice from his long-time caddie Steve Williams actually hurt his chances of winning a fourth U.S. Open. 
In regard to his wayward approach shot on the tenth hole, a mere 125-yard approach that missed the green and landed in a nasty patch of cliffside fescue, Woods said:  

"Stevie said take dead aim right at it, and in my heart I said 'no'. There was no chance, I have a sand wedge in my hand, and I can't play at that flag. You land the ball on the green, it will go past the flags."
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And then on his mistake on the tough par-3 12th hole:  
"I hit the wrong club on 12," he added. "My instincts were telling me to hit a 5, play it to the right, just draw it in there, and we thought 4 would be better, hold it up against the wind and I made just an awful swing."

The bottom line: Tiger has obviously acquired the same tendency that many great players have had over the years -- blaming anything and anyone but himself.  Former Open champ MIchael Campbell breaches etiquette while missing cut Five years after winning the U.S. Open at Pinehurst, Michael Campbell's game, and ability to conduct himself like a pro, have evidently deserted him. According to TVNZ, Campbell, who missed the cut by 12 strokes, played his ball up the fairway on the 18th hole while playing partner Paul Goydos went back to hit a second tee shot. Then Campbell, who shot 19 over par for two rounds at Pebble Beach, proceeded to putt out before his playing partners reached the green. Campbell has now missed the cut in four of the five past U.S. Opens. 
Goydos chalked up Campbell's behavior to the "bogey train" he was riding, but still disappointing behavior from a former Open champ.  McDowell thinks competing in British Open will be "cool"  Newly minted U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell is fired up and ready to make a run at a second major championship at St. Andrews next month. In a report on Yahoo, McDowell, who tied for 11th at St. Andrews in 2005, said, 
“It’s a golf course I know really well. It’s all about course knowledge and local knowledge. To go there as U.S. Open champion and with an opportunity to win another major is going to be cool. There’s no doubt I’ll take an amazing amount of confidence from this week, to know I have the ability to get one of these across the line … the peace of mind to feel as calm and as confident as I did coming down the stretch.”
The bottom line: McDowell's win at Pebble was well-deserved, but even par won't get it done at St. Andrews.

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by Kevin Cunningham