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Sponsorship bodes well for Greensboro tournament


The announcement Monday that Wyndham Worldwide has extended its sponsorship of the PGA Tour event in Greensboro through 2016 is a big bonus for the tournament, which has seemed to gain a new life and energy since moving back to Sedgefield Country Club in 2008.

Tournament director Mark Brazil had been working for weeks trying to finalize the deal, and the announcement reinforces the good vibes in advance of the tournament in two weeks.

"At the end of the day, a title sponsor looks to see if it works for them, and Wyndham said yes," Brazil said. "That's great news for all of us."

The tournament is expected to have another good field in two weeks with, among others, Vijay Singh, Lucas Glover, Davis Love III, David Toms, Paul Casey and defending champion Arjun Atwal participating. Brazil said organizers have also gotten more comfortable with the August date, one week after the PGA Championship and one week before the FedEx Cup playoffs begin.

"I think Wyndham has embraced the date and chosen to do what it can with it," Brazil said.

If you were wondering about where Scott Stallings, the playoff winner at the Greenbrier, came from, one answer is from the eGolf Professional Tour based in Charlotte.

Before making it on the PGA Tour, Stallings was a regular on the eGolf Tour around Charlotte. He played the tour full-time from 2007 through 2009 before earning a spot on the Nationwide Tour, which led to the PGA Tour. Stallings was a solid player on the eGolf circuit with four top-10 finishes in three years, but he changed everything with his victory in West Virginia on Sunday.

It was just another reminder that there are so many good players out there, many of whom never make it big. For many, it's just a matter of getting the chance to strike it rich as Stallings did.

What Yani Tseng is doing 3 -- five major championship victories before her 23rd birthday -- is resetting the idea of how good young players can be.

She seems to have such a good perspective on what she's doing and how to handle it. Tseng sought out the counsel of Annika Sorenstam a couple of years ago, and now she's become the new Annika, dominating the game the way few have. She is the new face of women's professional golf.

So how is it that Charlotte's Webb Simpson can be ninth in FedEx Cup points, 11th on the PGA Tour money list and tied for sixth in tour top-10 finishes (six) this year but still not be in the field at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational this week at Firestone?

He's 51st in the official world golf rankings and he needed to be in the top 50. He missed out by .37 points to No. 50 Ryo Ishikawa, who doesn't have a top-10 finish on the PGA Tour this year.

Sounds like the WGC event has the top 50 players in the rankings but not the top 50 players at the moment in the field this week.

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