Stricker enjoys watching long driving
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FLA. Steve Stricker turned 47 this year and despite playing a limited schedule, he plays well. Playing in the group with Adam Scott and Rory McIlroy—he’s nearly twice as old as McIlroy—he was shorter off the tee and doesn’t have their brand of firepower, but he was efficient in finishing with a 67.
It helps being regarded as one of the best putters in golf, of course.
“I enjoy watching them,” Stricker said. “They’ve got so much offense. I’ve got to do my things a little bit differently from how they do their things, but it’s still effective for me. But it’s fun to watch them how they can get really aggressive and dominate some holes if they want to, just like Adam did on No. 9. He just bombed it out there and hit iron there, and I’ve got 250 to the front.”
Stricker and McIlroy spent a lot of time talking, which led to a question: What do a 47-year-old American and a 24-year-old from Northern Ireland talk about?
“We were talking about his girlfriend, Caroline,” Stricker said.
McIlroy is dating tennis star Caroline Wozniacki, and Stricker said his 14-year-old daughter, Bobbi Maria, and wife Nikki are big into tennis.
“I think we’re going to the U.S. Open tennis this fall, so I asked kind of how she prepares and what kind of workout regimen she has and what their days are like,” Stricker said. “Yeah, I don’t care about Rory. I was asking about Caroline.”
Despite their age differences, Stricker and McIlroy had one thing in common Thursday—they each made six birdies, all on the same holes. Stricker was the last to tee off when the round started, so he never hit first on any tee the entire round.