GOLF:  SWOLLEN  WRIST  FORCES  ROSALES  TO QUIT EVIAN  MASTERS

MANILA,  July 22, 2004
 
(STAR)
Jennifer Rosales pulled out of the Evian Masters yesterday due to wrist injury, abruptly ending her quest in the second richest tournament on the LPGA Tour and jeopardizing her stint in next week’s Weetabix Women’s British Open in Berkshire, England.

"Pinatigil kami ng medic. Maga ng husto ang wrist niya pagpalo niya sa bunker sa No. 10 dahil may batong malaki," Rosales’ swing coach Bong Lopez told The STAR in a text message late last night.

It was indeed an unfortunate turn of events for the 25-year-old Filipina shotmaker, who earlier had to settle for a borrowed set of clubs after her caddie Donna Earley lost her trusted clubs in transit the other day.

Rosales, who had looked forward to contending for the top $375,000 purse in this $2.5 million event in Evian, France after a well-deserved rest last week, actually went one-under after three holes. But she struggled from there, dropping two strokes from No. 5 before going out with an even 36 after a birdie on No. 8.

"Okay pa siya after nine holes kahit nag bogey-bogey ka sayang talaga," added Lopez.

After that bogey-marred ordeal on No. 10, Rosales was never the same again, dropping two more shots in her next four holes and forcing the event’s medics to step in.

"Sinundan kami hanggang No. 14 tapos di na siya pinayagang pumalo," said Lopez.

It was the second withdrawal by Rosales in a fine season that saw her score a breakthrough victory in the Chick-Fil-A Championship in Georgia, Atlanta last May. In her first tournament this year, she also quit, again citing wrist injury, in the Welch’s/Fry Championship in Arizona in March after carding a 75.

Earlier, Rosales contended herself with a borrowed Ping driver, a pair of Mizuno woods (3 and 5), a Mizuno pitching wedge, Ping irons and a Ping putter while Pat Hurst lent her a golf bag and tees and Sherri Steinhauer gave her gloves. Even Swede ace and world No. 1 Annika Sorenstam was about to lend her golfing shoes but Rosales’ supply from sponsoring Bally arrived in time.

However, Lopez said his ward will still see action in the British Open next week.

"I’m sure pwede na yan next week. Therapy lang at gamut okay na yan," Lopez said.

With Rosales struggling, Fil-Am and former national teammate Dorothy Delasin tried to take the cudgels but succeeded only to grab the limelight after 13 holes after the Daly City-based shotmaker fired a running eagle-aided 6-under card.

But she lost her poise, lost four strokes in a stretch of three holes, and lost her place on top of the clubhouse leaderboard.

She wound up with a 70 for a provisional share of 12th place. Marta Prieto and Lynnette Brooky shared the clubhouse lead with a pair of six-under par 66 with half of the 78-player field still playing at presstime. — Dante Navarro


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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