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Shelby brothers staples at World Am

CHIP SHOTS

More than 3,000 golfers are in Myrtle Beach this week for the annual Golf.com World Amateur Handicap Championship, a sprawling event played across Grand Strand courses.

Among the golfers are brothers Don and Bob Yelton from Shelby, who have played in all 27 events through the years. Don Shelton recently contemplated postponing surgery until his doctor said he would be able to play in the Myrtle Beach event.

“We’ve done it so many years now we don’t want to break our string,” Don Yelton said. “I’ve never done worth a darn in the tournament but I still enjoy it.

“We enjoy meeting different guys and playing different courses. My brother’s had a couple of top-10 finishes but I’ve never won so much as a golf tee.”

Mark O’Meara is the latest to add his name to the commitment list for the Ensure Classic at Rock Barn Golf & Spa on Sept. 27-Oct.3.

Bernhard Langer, the hottest player on the Champions Tour, has already committed and when he wasn’t picked for the European Ryder Cup team, it should assure he’ll be at Rock Barn.

Entries are still being accepted for the Arnie’s Fight Against Prostate Cancer tournament Sept. 11 at McCanless Golf Club in Salisbury. Entry fee is $50 per person in the two-man team event. Proceeds go for research on prostate cancer treatment. For more information contact Kim or Scott at 704-637-1235.

OBSERVATIONS

Though it’s admittedly a long way off, expect the 2017 PGA Championship to be a statewide event, not just a Charlotte event.

Officials want to touch every part of the state in much the same way the U.S. Open has done successfully at Pinehurst.

Is landing a PGA Championship worth losing the Wells Fargo Championship? Tough call. It’s possible the PGA Tour event could continue at Quail Hollow beyond 2014, though the sponsorship issue must be resolved.

As successful as the Quail Hollow event has been in its eight-year existence, just letting it disappear would be a great loss. Having a regular and prominent presence on the PGA Tour schedule, a presence that draws the best players annually, is like gold. You don’t just give that up. Places like Greensboro, San Antonio and New Orleans dream of having what Charlotte has.

Hosting a PGA Championship is terrific. There’s a validation that comes with hosting a major championship that you don’t get hosting a regular tour event.

But if you get one PGA Championship and then it’s 10 years or so before you get another, that’s a long time without professional golf in Charlotte. Too long.

Maybe it’s greedy but is having the best of both worlds too much to ask?

Colin Montgomerie’s tough decision to leave Justin Rose and Paul Casey – both ranked among the top 23 players in the world – off the European Ryder Cup team was an indication of the depth of talent Monty will take to the matches in Wales this fall.

But did he make the right call picking Padraig Harrington over either Rose or Casey?

The case for Harrington is obvious: Three majors in recent years and the epitome of a fighter. But he’s been off form for the better part of two years and it’s tough to ignore his 0-7-2 record in the past two Ryder Cups.

Rose didn’t lose at Valhalla two years ago and he’s won twice on the PGA Tour this year. Casey has dealt with injury problems but he’s the eighth-ranked player in the world.

The Luke Donald pick surprised me a little. I figured Rose might get the nod there.

Now it’s up to U.S. captain Cory Pavin to make his choices on Sept. 7. And, yes, Tiger Woods is going to be on the team.

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