Farmingdale, May 15 (AP/UNB) — It's been a month since Tiger Woods stunned the golf world by overcoming four back surgeries and periods when his troubled career appeared to be over by winning the Masters for his first major in 11 years.
Four-time major champion Rory McIlroy was still in awe Tuesday, two days before the start of the year's second major, the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black.
"I still don't think people understand what he did in April and coming back, and with everything that he's been through," McIlroy said. "It's unbelievable. Whether it's the greatest comeback in sports, that's probably up for debate, but from what I've experienced and the things that he said when I've been around him, to be 2½ years ago from looking like maybe not playing golf again to winning the first major of the year and being the favorite going into the second major of the year, I mean, that's unbelievable."
Like most golf fans, McIlroy sees a transformed Woods these days.
"I think he's grateful and thankful that his kids get to see a little bit of what he was before they were around," the two-time PGA Championship winner said. "So I think — it is different. He's a different person. He's in a different space in his life, and yeah, he just seems very grateful for this opportunity to do what he loves and compete."
Three-time major champion Padraig Harrington will captain the European side at next year's Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits. He's got some strong ideas on how he will put together that squad to defend the title it won last year in France.
Harrington already has decided to use only three captain's picks for the team, allowing the ninth-ranked player in the standings to automatically qualify. And he is planning to instruct candidates for those three picks to make sure they play the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth just before qualifying closes.
"I was surprised that in my change, everybody is talking about the three picks, but everybody seemed to have forgotten that the date has changed for the picks is actually the BMW Championship at Wentworth, which is only a week before the Ryder Cup," he said. "So it's a much later date for the picks.
"And one of the reasons that date is there is because it means anybody who wants a pick is going to have to turn up," the Irishman said. "Nobody has an excuse not to turn up at the BMW Championship in the UK. They can't say they're playing another event or they're somewhere else. If you want a pick, you're going to have to turn up and play a big tournament with the other players who are interested in that pick so I can make a definitive decision as late as a week before the tournament."
To Harrington, nothing compares with representing the continent in what has become the most intense event in golf. He has played in six Ryder Cups, winning it four times.
"I would be on the side of making the players jump through a few more hoops to be in the Ryder Cup team," he said. "It is a huge deal to play in the Ryder Cup team in terms of people's careers. Like Frankie Molinari won the Open last year, but the Ryder Cup made him, and that just sums it up for Europe. Like it really did make him as a golfer."
A PGA committee on the American with Disabilities Act made the decision to allow John Daly to use a cart at this week's event, the championships director for the PGA of America said Tuesday.
It's safe to say Tiger Woods was not impressed with the request.
"As far as J.D. taking a cart, well, I walked with a broken leg," Woods said.
He was referring to the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, which Woods played on shredded ligaments in his left knee and a double stress fracture in the leg. He played 91 holes, winning in a playoff.
Kerry Haigh, the championships director for the PGA of America, said Daly will not have access to all areas on the hilly course in the topless cart and much will depend on the golf course and the conditions, particularly if it rains.
"I will meet with John and just talk through where he can go and can't go," Haigh said. "Obviously there's some places on this golf course where you can't get a golf cart to. We try and use common sense, what's reasonable, what's fair for the protection both of the player and those issues as well as the playing of a major championship."
Daly has arthritis in his right knee and he requested to be allowed to use a cart because of medical issues. He will be the first player to ride in a cart at a major championship since Casey Martin in the U.S. Open at Olympic Club in 1998 and 2012.
Vijay Singh became the third former champion to withdraw from the PGA Championship.
Singh, who won at Sahalee in 1998, cited a back injury for withdrawing. He was replaced by J.T. Poston, who will make his PGA debut.
Justin Thomas, who won at Quail Hollow in 2017, withdrew on Monday because a bone bruise in his right wrist hasn't healed. He was replaced by Kelly Kraft. Last week, Davis Love III (Winged Foot in 1997) withdrew.
Thomas' withdrawal keeps the PGA Championship from having all of the top 100 from the world ranking at Bethpage Black.
Tiger Woods is the Masters champion going for the second leg of the Grand Slam at Bethpage Black. The last time the PGA Championship was held in May was in 1949, when Sam Snead won. Snead also was the reigning Masters champion. ... Max Homa makes his major championship debut this week and already has a trophy. He won the Long Drive Competition with a 318-yard drive on the 16th hole. ... Craig Bowden is among 13 players competing in all three majors at Bethpage Black. He qualified for the U.S. Open in 2002 and 2009, and he qualified for the PGA Championship as a club pro.
Dhaka, May 13 (UNB)- The Walton 39th National Junior Under -20Chess Championships will kick off on Wednesday at the Chess Federation hall room at National Sports Council here.
The two categories of competitions--Open and Girls—were included in the Championship, both of which will be held on eight-round follow Swiss-League system.
The Open section of the championship is open for all the Under-20 boys and girls while the girls section is restricted for girls only.
Interested boys and girls can enroll their name on Tuesday (May 13) by 6:00 pm with entry fees and age certificate at Bangladesh Chess Federation office.
Madrid, May 13 (AP/UNB) — Novak Djokovic celebrated a lot more than a record-tying 33rd Masters 1000 title at the Madrid Open.
Djokovic left the Spanish capital feeling pretty good about his game, too, carrying a lot of confidence into the rest of the clay-court season.
The top-ranked Djokovic earned a comfortable 6-3, 6-4 win over Stefanos Tsitsipas on Sunday to join Nadal as the most successful players in Masters 1000 tournaments, moving five ahead of Roger Federer, who is third in the all-time list.
It was Djokovic's second title of the season, adding to his triumph in the Australian Open.
"I feel like this tournament win was very important for my level of confidence because after the Australian Open I wasn't playing my best, I wasn't finding the right game and the consistency on the court in Indian Wells, Miami and Monte Carlo," Djokovic said. "(It's a) very important time for me in the season, because this gives me a lot of confidence prior to Rome and, of course, Roland Garros, where I definitely want to play my best."
Djokovic will be seeking his second French Open title in June. He now has three Madrid Open trophies, adding to the ones he won in 2011 and 2016.
"These are the best tournaments, biggest tournaments we have in our sport, in the ATP, of course alongside the Grand Slams," Djokovic said. "This is as important and as good as it gets."
Djokovic was in control from the start against his 20-year-old Greek opponent, who had defeated Nadal in the Madrid semifinals and was trying to become the first player to win three tour titles this season.
The Serb broke Tsitsipas early in the first set and late in the second to comfortably close out the match at the Magic Box center court, securing his 14th clay title — and 74th overall — without dropping a set.
The eighth-seeded Tsitsipas, the tour's winningest player in 2019 with 27 victories, lacked the intensity and aggressiveness that he showed against second-ranked Nadal and was overpowered by Djokovic. He had beaten Djokovic in Toronto last year in the first meeting between the two players.
"He deserved the victory, he played unbelievable. I couldn't do much," Tsitsipas said. "Physically I was not there. My legs were not coping with my mind. Completely I could feel the fatigue and this soreness, not just in my legs, but everywhere in my body. I had a tough match last night, so he took advantage of that. I just didn't have solutions."
Djokovic didn't concede a break point on Sunday, earning a crucial one for himself at 4-4 in the second set by returning Tsitsipas' overhead shot with a backhand winner down the line. He then served out to win the match.
The 31-year-old Djokovic, who now has 200 wins against top 10 opponents, had struggled after winning the Australian Open, with his best result since then having been a quarterfinal appearance in Monte Carlo at the start of the clay-court season.
He was coming off another confidence-boosting win over an in-form Dominic Thiem to make it to the final in Madrid.
Tsitsipas, who will reach a career-high No. 7 ranking this week, won titles in Estoril and Marseille, and reached the final in Dubai, where he lost to Federer. He was beaten by Nadal in the Australian Open semifinals for his best-ever showing in a Grand Slam. The Toronto final, when he lost to Nadal, was his first in a Masters 1000 event.
In the doubles final, Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau defeated Thiem and Diego Schwartzman 6-2, 6-3 for their second Madrid Open title, adding to their 2016 victory.
Kiki Bertens won the women's title on Saturday.
Dhaka, May 12 (UNB) - Robi Axiata Limited from Bangladesh is going to participate in the Standard Chartered Trophy 2019 at Anfield Stadium in United Kingdom on Monday (May 13).
Each team with five players will compete in a 30-minute special match in the tournament. From Group-A India, UK and South Korea and from Group-B Bangladesh, Ghana and Hong Kong will compete at the Anfield Stadium.
Robi got the opportunity to participate in the tournament by wining Bangladesh part that was held on March 1.
The Robi team includes Sheikh Adil Ahmed, Towfiquzzaman Chowdhury, Mohammad Aslam Hossen, Shakib Ahmed, Asiful Huq, MSR Momen Sagor and ShamShul Arifin.
Earlier, Bangla Trac, LankaBangla, Unilever, IDLC, Robi Axiata Ltd, BATB, Youth Group, United Group, Ispahani Group, Nestlé, Laugfs Gas and Unique Group participated in the Bangladesh part of the tournament.
Dhaka, May 12 (UNB)- Bangladesh archers missed bronze medal as they lost to South Korea by 2-6 sets in men’s recurve team event in the ongoing Stage-2 of World Cup Archery 2019 in Shanghai on Sunday.
The team comprised of Roman Shana, Tamimul Haque and Hakim Rubel faced Lee Woo Seok, Kim Woojin and Lee Seungyun of South Korea.
Bangladesh had a chance to grab the first medal in their second appearance in the World Cup Archery but they managed the fourth slot on the final day of the ongoing competition.
However, the team will return home on Monday night.
Earlier, a 10-member team representing Bangladesh (seven archers and three officials) reached Shanghai on early Sunday to take part in stage 2 of Archery World Cup 2019.
Hakim Ahmed Rubel joined veteran archers Roman Shana, Tamimul Islam, Emdadul Haque Milon and Beauty Roy in the men’s and women’s recurve divisions while Asim Kumar Das and Susmita Bonik took part in the men’s and women’s compound divisions.
In men’s recurve singles, Mohammad Hakim Ahmed Rubel lost to Lee Seungyun of South Korea by 7-3 sets and veteran Mohammad Roman Sana lost to Van Den Berg Sjef of the Netherlands by 6-4 sets in the round 16.
Imdadul Haque Milan and Mohammad Tamimul Haque were eliminated from round of 48 of the same event. Milan lost to Huston Patrick of Great Britain by 2-6 sets while Tamimul lost to Tekoniemi Antti of Finland.
Beauty Ray was eliminated from round of 24 of the women’s recurve singles after losing to Hayakawa Ren of Japan 3-7 sets.
In the recurve mixed team event, Bangladesh team comprised of Roman Shana and Beauty Ray lost to Tan Ya-Ting and Tang Chih-Chun of Chinese Taipei by 6-0 sets in the round of 8.
In the men’s compound singles, Ashim Kumar Das lost to Wong Co Wan of Malaysia by 140-142 score while Susmita Bonik lost to Medeleine Ong Xue Li of Singapore by 141-143 score in the women’s compound singles.
Ashim and Susmita also lost to their Japanese rivals by 137-157 score in the round of 12 of the compound mixed team event.