News & ToursAugust 11, 2011

Stats: Filling the jar

Six notable first-round stats (and three extras) from Golf World contributing writer Brett Avery, who compiles the Rank and File statistical sections for the magazine's major championship coverage. For more numbers throughout each round, follow him on Twitter at @BWAvery:

  1. Leader Steve Stricker, who barely missed his birdie putt inside 15 feet at the ninth green (his 18th) for a major championship-record 62, made seven birdies against no bogeys. When he tied for 66th a decade ago in the most recent PGA Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club, Stricker needed 72 holes to make seven birdies. 2. More Stricker: Despite his 63 and two-shot lead over fellow Wisconsin resident Jerry Kelly, tying the major 18-hole record hardly guarantees success. Only five of the first 24 instances in which a player shot 63 in a major led to a victory: Johnny Miller in the 1973 U.S. Open, Jack Nicklaus in the 1980 U.S., Raymond Floyd in the 1982 PGA, Greg Norman in the 1986 British and Tiger Woods in the 2007 PGA. (At the other end of the scale, Michael Bradley finished T-54 in the '95 PGA while Tom Weiskopf was solo 37th in the '80 U.S. Open.)

2a. When Miller became the first 63 shooter in a major, at Oakmont CC, Stricker was 6 years old.

  1. Shaun Micheel's 66, which put him solo third, was his low round in a major, bettering his 67 in the '06 PGA at Medinah CC. (His next two low major rounds were 68s, also in PGAs.) If you thought the Indiana University product was a longshot when he won this title eight years ago as the No. 169 player in the world, consider that he came into this week ranked 316th. His last top 10 was a solo fourth in the '10 John Deere.

  1. In his two missed cuts in majors as a pro, Tiger Woods endured nine bogeys in the '06 U.S. Open at Winged Foot and seven bogeys in the '09 British Open at Turnberry. He made six bogeys in his first-round 77 at AAC. His major-career worst bogey count was 18 in the '03 PGA at Oak Hill.

  1. What do Derek Lamely and Anthony Kim have in common? They are the only two players whose driving accuracy percentage this season on the PGA Tour is worse than the 49.64 percent logged by Tiger Woods (139 of 280 fairways). Lamely went into the week ranked 190th on tour at 48.63 percent (320 of 658) while Kim stood at 47.71 percent (416 of 872).

5a. Woods has cracked the tour's top 100 in fairways hit in just one of the last nine years: '09 (64.29 percent, ranked 86th).

  1. Despite allowing 22 scores below par 70 and 13 others at even, AAC extracted its share of discomfort. The first-round scoring average tied for second-hardest this year, sharing 73.109 with Congressional. PGA National's Champion course put up a 73.875 (par 70) to begin The Honda Classic.

6a. Looking to Friday's play, the highest second-round averages this year: 75.289 (par 72) in the Valero Texas Open at TPC San Antonio; 73.092 (par 70) in the HP Byron Nelson at TPC Four Seasons; 72.974 (par 70) in the British at Royal St. George's.

-- Brett Avery

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