OTHER GOLF TOURNAMENTS
Nicklaus, Watson team up for Skins win
WAILEA, Hawaii » Jack Nicklaus wasn't in a giving mood.
Nicklaus and Tom Watson earned seven skins and $260,000 on the back nine yesterday to edge Gary Player and Jay Haas in the Champions Skins Game.
Team Nicklaus-Watson finished with nine skins and $320,000, boosting the Golden Bear to a career-record 96 skins and $2,295,000. Second last year, Nicklaus and Watson sealed the win when Player-Haas bogeyed the first playoff hole and were eliminated.
"I think we were both determined not to lose," Nicklaus said.
Player and Haas, the Champions Tour player of the year, finished with six skins worth $290,000 in the four-team, alternate-shot event. The $30,000 margin was the second-smallest in event history, behind only Gary Player's $10,000 victory over Watson in 2000 in individual play.
It was the first time since the 2000 tournament that everyone took home money.
"Everybody traveled a long way. It's nice everybody shared the round a little bit, but we didn't come here to share the round," Nicklaus said.
Arnold Palmer made a 10-foot birdie on the second playoff hole on No. 16 to earn the final skin worth $100,000 and avoid being shut out for the third straight year. He teamed with Loren Roberts, making his first appearance in the tournament.
Defending champions Raymond Floyd and Dana Quigley began the day tied for the lead with Nicklaus-Watson at two skins and $60,000, but were blanked on the back nine.
"You'd always like to win it all if you can, but it was good to see (Palmer) do it and everybody get a piece of the pie," Watson said.
Nicklaus and Watson pressured their opponents early on Watson's bending 18-foot birdie putt on the par-3 11th, picking up seven skins worth $260,000. The hole ballooned to $260,000 after the previous six holes, including five Saturday, were carried over.
"Yes, sir!" said Nicklaus, who set up the birdie with a solid tee shot from 178 yards.
Haas, who won four Champions Tour events last year, had a chance to halve the hole, but left his 12-footer high.
"Now, let's go get the rest of them," Watson said.
"Let's go get the rest of them, partner. Well done," said Nicklaus, who will turn 67 on Jan. 21.
With only $120,000 claimed on the front nine Saturday, $650,000 was up for grabs on the back side.
Nicklaus said his team didn't make very many putts, "but we made the right putts at the right time. That's why we got the check."
Europe routs Asia
BANGKOK, Thailand » Lee Westwood beat Toru Taniguchi 4 and 3 and Europe took six of eight singles points for a 12 1/2-3 1/2 victory over Asia in the Royal Trophy.
Paul McGinley, Johan Edfors, Anthony Wall and Robert Karlsson also won matches for Europe.
Canete is Joburg winner
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa » Argentina's Ariel Canete won the Joburg Open for his first European tour title, birdieing three of the final four holes for a 4-under 67 and a two-stroke victory over South Africa's Andrew McLardy.
Canete finished with a 19-under 266 total in the tournament co-sanctioned by the European and Southern Africa tours. McLardy closed with a 68.