Toms, Verplank top Presidents Cup scoring

Toms, Verplank top Presidents Cup scoring

MONTREAL (AP) — David Toms topped the Presidents Cup scoring table, beating Trevor Immelman 2 up Sunday to finish with 4 1/2 points in five matches.

“I played pretty well and I played with some good partners,” Toms said. “It’s been absolutely fantastic overall. It was a great atmosphere.”

Toms teamed with Jim Furyk and Zach Johnson in foursomes and Woody Austin and Tiger Woods in fourball play at Royal Montreal.

“I got to play with Tiger for the first time and that was fun,” Toms said.

Scott Verplank won all four of his matches. The 2001 Canadian Open winner at Royal Montreal, Verplank beat Rory Sabbatini 2 and 1.

“I just love playing team golf,” Verplank said. “I have a pretty decent record in the Ryder Cup and I have a pretty good record in this just because I enjoy it so much.”

Canadian Mike Weir’s 1-up victory over Woods gave him an International-best 3-1-1 record. Els was second at 3-2-0.

CAPTAIN JACK: The eve of the final matches at the Presidents Cup is usually when the American team presents captain Jack Nicklaus with a gift, and this time it was Tiger Woods who came up with the present.

It was a Chelsea Ship Strike antique clock, which Barbara Nicklaus said every U.S. president since Woodrow Wilson has owned.

The gift was fitting because her husband has just taken ownership of a new boat.

“It said, ‘To Captain Jack and his First Mate,'” she said. “And they put the names of every player on the bottom. It was a perfect gift for his new boat.”

She said the new Nicklaus boat wasn’t quite as big as Woods’ 155-foot yacht “Privacy.” But they have one thing in common. Woods said he has a Chelsea Ship Strike on board, too.

HISTORY LESSON: Tiger Woods lost the 18th hole and his match with Mike Weir after pulling his drive into the pond on the left side of the fairway.

Thirty-two years earlier, U.S. captain Jack Nicklaus hit into the same pond on the final hole of regulation in the Canadian Open, leading to a bogey en route to a playoff loss to Tom Weiskopf.

“He doesn’t want to know aboutmy history,” Nicklaus said.

Woods was asked if Nicklaus had told him about it.

“No,” said Woods, who played the closing hole for the first time in five matches.

Assistant captain Jeff Sluman then joined in.

“Jack, ever hit a shot to the left?” Sluman asked Nicklaus, famous for playing a high left-to-right shot.

“I didn’t hit enough club,” Nicklaus replied.

FASHION STATEMENT: The International players’ wives were a hit in their Canadian national team hockey jerseys.

“Liezl Els and Bricia Weir came up with that and the concierge at the hotel got them for us,” said Vivienne Player, captain Gary Player’s wife.

“I wish we’d had them all week.”

She then quickly changed the subject to Mike Weir’s victory over Tiger Woods.

“It’s all about Mike Weir,” she said. “What a thrill. To come back and beat Tiger was even better than if he had stayed ahead and won.”

FINALLY: Phil Mickelson won for the first time in seven Presidents Cup singles matches, routing Vijay Singh 5 and 4 to improve to 1-3-3.

“I didn’t know that was the record, but it’s nice to get a win,” Mickelson said. “I was excited to have a chance to play Vijay. … It was a fun match and I feel like I played well and had control for a long time.”

Mickelson finished the week 2-1-2.

“It’s been such a fun week for us,” Mickelson said. “I think the people in Canada treated us so well.”

Mickelson rebounded quickly after losing the first hole to Singh.

“I hit a terrible drive … and ended up hitting it over the green and made bogey and gave him the hole,” Lefty said. “I believe that was the last fairway I missed. I was able to play aggressive and attack pins and ended up making some birdies.

“He had a couple of great up-and-downs on 4 and 5, one of the best up-and-downs I’d ever seen, he was 50 yards left of the green on 4 in the trees and looked like he had no shot. He and I have played a lot of golf together in the last month or so, and I guess you play enough golf with someone, you start playing like him, becausehe was hitting it like I usually do, and getting up-and-down.”

SAY CHEESE: Three photographers were charged with taking pictures on the first tee of every player in every match posing with the Presidents Cup, along with each match referee and dignitaries.

On Sunday, they wanted a picture of themselves posing with the gold trophy.

But who would take the photo?

PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem volunteered, and it was a peculiar sight to see Finchem squinting into a camera trying to focus.

Worse yet, he didn’t even have a credential for it.

FRIENDLY FORMAT: The United States is 5-1-1 in the Presidents Cup, but has lost five of the last six Ryder Cup matches – including three in a row.

“It’s always different teams,” Tiger Woods said. “The format’s different, too. Less matches (in the Ryder Cup). Here you have to play every player each day. You can’t hide somebody here. If someone’s struggling, they’re exposed.”

SIMPLE EXPLANATION: Geoff Ogilvy was asked to explain what the International team needed to do differently to win.

“Win more matches. Play better,” the Australian said. “I mean, we just didn’t win enough matches. There’s no science behind it. You’ve just got to play better.”

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