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Fred Couples gets first senior major win

He beats John Cook in a three-hole playoff to become one of only three players to win the Players Championship on the regular and senior tours.

August 21, 2011|Wire reports
  • Fred Couples hits his tee shot on the 17th hole during the final round of the Senior Players Championship on Sunday.
Fred Couples hits his tee shot on the 17th hole during the final round of the… (Chris Trotman / Getty Images )

Fred Couples finished off John Cook with a nifty wedge shot to three feet on the third hole of a playoff Sunday in the Seniors Players Championship at Harrison, N.Y.

Couples won his first senior major title, closing with an even-par 71 to match Cook (70) at 11 under on Westchester Country Club's West Course — a longtime PGA Tour venue where Couples estimated he has played about 100 rounds in 30 years. Peter Senior (71) was third at 10 under.

Couples joined Jack Nicklaus and Raymond Floyd as the only players to win the Players Championship on the regular and senior tours.

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Webb Simpson shot a 67 to claim his first PGA Tour win, a three-stroke victory in the Wyndham Championship at Greensboro, N.C.

Simpson finished at 18-under 262 and collected $936,000.

George McNeill (64) was at 15 under, with Tommy Gainey (69) another stroke back at the final event before the PGA Tour playoffs.

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Suzann Pettersen rallied to win the LPGA Safeway Classic, overcoming a nine-stroke deficit with a seven-under 64 and beating Na Yeon Choi with a par on the first hole of a playoff at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in North Plains, Ore.

In the playoff, Choi's second shot on the par-four 18th went into the water to the right of the green, and she missed a putt for bogey before Pettersen made her winning putt.

Choi finished with a 73 to match Pettersen at six under on the Ghost Creek Course.

ETC.

Djokovic retires in final

Novak Djokovic's remarkable winning streak ended with a grimace, one that puts a new spin on the U.S. Open.

The world's top-ranked player was forced to retire in the second set because of a sore right shoulder, giving Andy Murray the championship in the Western & Southern Open at Mason, Ohio.

It was the Serb's first bad moment in his 57-2 season. Djokovic had won 16 consecutive matches since his only previous loss of the season in the semifinals against Roger Federer on June 3 at the French Open.

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Maria Sharapova rallied to beat Jelena Jankovic, 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-3, in the Western & Southern Open women's final.

The fourth-seeded Sharapova fended off Jankovic's seven break-point chances in the last set alone to claim her second title of the season. Sharapova's best moments came in the tiebreaker, when she won the last five points to level the match.

The 14th-ranked Jankovic extended her streak of 17 months without a singles title.

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Four Louisiana State football players hired a defense attorney and put off a meeting with police about a bar fight that started when a patron honked at a crowd blocking his exit from a parking lot, Baton Rouge police said.

Quarterback Jordan Jefferson, offensive lineman Chris Davenport, defensive lineman Josh Johns and receiver Jarvis Landry had been asked to give their side of the story at police headquarters Monday, but attorney Nathan Fisher arranged a postponement, Sgt. Donald Stone confirmed in an email.

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Favored 4-year-old filly Tanda took the lead on the turn and faced no serious challenge as she won the $150,000 Rancho Bernardo Handicap, a sprint for fillies and mares at Del Mar.

Ridden by Joe Talamo, who won two stakes Sunday, Tanda was a distant third in the small field of four in the early going, but took a 11/2-length lead at the halfway point and went on to beat She's Cheeky by 11/4 lengths, covering 61/2 furlongs in 1:15.34.

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