PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) — Boo Weekley and Heath Slocum are together again.
Weekley and Slocum – former teammates at Milton High in the Florida Panhandle – said Friday that they’ll represent the United States at the World Cup, a two-man team event Nov. 22-25 at Mission Hills Golf Club in China.
Arron Oberholser originally agreed to play for the U.S. and chose Sean O’Hair as his partner, but pulled out because he’ll have surgery on his hand later this month. That opened the door for Weekley, and Slocum accepted the chance to go with his longtime friend.
“This is really a dream come true for me,” Weekley said. “I am so excited to play with Heath and represent our country in this world event. I remember the days back in the early 1990s when we were trying as a high school team to just get past the district tournament. That was a big goal. Now to be able to go play in China and represent everybody … well, we sure have come a long way.”
Stewart Cink and J.J. Henry played for the U.S. in the 24-team event last year.
The tournament is the week of Thanksgiving and half a world from home, but Slocum said he was thrilled to be chosen.
“I was actually quite honored to represent the United States,” Slocum said. “It wasn’t a tough decision. I’ll be there for more Thanksgivings.”
And now O’Hair – who played in a threesome with Slocum on Thursday and Friday at the Ginn sur Mer Classic – will be home for this one, if he so desires.
“It’s not like I earned the spot,” he said. “I was picked.”
Players were asked to play for the U.S. in the event based on their world golf rankings, starting with No. 1 Tiger Woods and moving down the list until someone accepted.
That person then got to choose his own partner, so O’Hair expected he wouldn’t be China-bound once Oberholser stepped aside.
“It would have been really cool to go and play for your country and I thought Arron and I would have made a really good team,” O’Hair said. “That was disappointing. But I think Heath’s a great guy and Boo’s a great guy, they’ve both had good years this year and I think they’ll do really well.”
Weekley has had a breakthrough year, getting his first tour win and earning more than $2.6 million, good for 22nd on the money list.
Slocum entered this week 31st in earnings, at a shade over $2 million. He knows several players passed up the chance to go to China, yet is already relishing the opportunity.
“It’s a big deal. It is to me,” Slocum said. “I’ve never been able to play in a Ryder Cup or a President’s Cup, so right now, this is the closest thing that I have. And if we play well, we can complement each other’s game. He’s an incredible player, playing great and he’ll be a great partner. All I can do is mess him up.”