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WGT Golf News

  • Earn Your Gift Bonus

    30 Dec 2009

    Remember that gifting is a great way to earn some free equipment and credits. If you send a gift to a non-WGT member and that person registers to become a member, you will receive a free sleeve of WGT GI-D golf balls. If that person then deposits $10 or more at WGT, you will receive 200 credits in your account as a bonus!

    To give a gift, click the GIVE AS GIFT button on the detail page of an eligible item in the Pro Shop. Read more about gifting >

  • WGT is Hiring

    28 Dec 2009

    WGT is hiring! Join the team behind the world's most realistic golf game and be a part of our success. If you think you have the passion, creativity, and drive, we'd like to hear from you! Click here to see a list of our open positions.

  • Get Your Free Avatar

    26 Dec 2009

    As a beta tester over the holidays, be sure to take advantage of our special offer of a free avatar! Simply go to the "Going Green (Male 1)" page and click BUY NOW (the price is 0 credits). Hurry, offer ends at the end of the year and there is less than a week left!

  • Happy Holidays from WGT

    24 Dec 2009

    WGT wishes you a peaceful and happy holiday season.


    Photo: Karl W./Flickr

  • Byron Nelson: Our Last 19th Hole Conversation (Part 3 of 3)

    22 Dec 2009

    By Peter Kessler

    Byron Nelson was born in Texas in 1912, the same year as his rivals Ben Hogan and Sam Snead. He died in September of 2006. The first player to make a successful transition from hickory to steel shafts in the early 1930s, Nelson never made a swing change after his 24th birthday. He never needed to. He was the first of his great triumvirate to win majors and set records. He traveled by car when there was no modern tour, when fresh tires were a player's best friend. And after winning every important American event, he left the tour at age 34 and bought the Texas ranch he'd dreamed of. He has lived there with his first wife, Louise, who died in 1985, and then with his second wife, Peggy. Nelson played with Walter Hagen and Bobby Jones and Gene Sarazen. He did better against Hogan and Snead than they did against him. The best player in the world from 1937 until he retired in 1946, he left behind one unbreakable record—his 11 straight victories in 1945—and several that were as remarkable, including 113 consecutive top-20 finishes and 18 wins in a stretch of 30 events in a single season. He was the perfect interview. Over many years, things had gotten to the point where I didn't really ask him questions anymore—I offered a phrase or a few scant words, and Byron Nelson told his wonderful stories, as fluid as honey. I was recently asked if I would like to have had a mind like his at age 93. My answer: Why do I have to wait 40 years?

    We spoke for the last time at the TPC at Las Colinas, not far from his ranch, Fairway Ranch in Roanoke, Texas, where Nelson lived for 59 happy years.

    PART THREE

    What's your reaction to Tiger's getting close to your magnificent record of 113 straight times in the money?

    We didn't really have cuts in my day—only 15 or 20 places got paid. Tenth place would pay $180. You needed that to make your expenses. That's why it doesn't make sense to compare the two records. I think Tiger will make the cut as long as he keeps playing. But I was in the money 113 times in a row, and that proved more about my game than any other thing.

    Can you think of another great player who's fought his swing as much as Tiger has?

    I hadn't thought about that. But no—not the caliber player he is. When Bobby Jones loosened his grip at the top of his swing, his long-iron play suffered, but he was still the best of his time. Tiger's swing is still good, but I think that subconsciously he's thinking about hitting the ball hard.

    What do you see when you watch him swing?

    It appears that in some way he loses the club. Tiger will finish with the club in one hand, or the club will almost fly out of his hands. That's so strange to me—I never lost a club in my life. But I still love to watch him play. I'm very fond of him; he and I are good friends.

    His swing looks different from the one he had in 2000.

    You are right. It doesn't look as coordinated, as tied together. He doesn't know if it's going right or left. If you know you're going to miss one way, you can play. But when you're on the tee worrying about hitting it left or right, you have a problem.

    Will he pass Jack's record of 18 professional majors?

    He has 11 more to beat the record—that's a whole lot. Because of Tiger there are young players coming out now who are 20 or 21, and they started working on their games at 15 and 16. They're seasoned. Tiger's responsible for that. And he's not as proud of it as he should be. He does a lot for juniors, for golf and for other golfers.

    Was Shell's Wonderful World of Golf underrated for its effects on the game?

    Oh, yes. They used to start with a 20-minute travelogue of each city it was played in and then they showed the golf. Boy, people loved it. Golf got a wonderful boost from Wonderful World of Golf. They only stopped when they weren't selling as much gasoline.

    How long did it take to shoot the first Wonderful World of Golf at Pine Valley in 1962?

    It was the longest two days in golf. Ever. We'd start as soon as the sky lighted up and they filmed from the top of a station wagon. They worked as fast as they could, but we only got in 10 holes the first day. And I was a quick player. You'd stop and they'd get you lined up for this or that. Then I'd start to play and they'd say, "Cut, cut, cut!" Or the cameraman would run out of film. They never used that cameraman again.

    Tom Watson looks like he's making the same swing he did 25 years ago.

    Three reasons. One, he takes great care of himself—he's in great shape. Two is desire. Three is that he's playing for his caddie, Bruce Edwards, who has Lou Gehrig's disease. Tom is trying to make people conscious of the disease.

    Name a great swinger of the club who doesn't get enough credit.

    Jack Grout had a great swing. He's the man who taught Jack Nicklaus how to play. He was the assistant pro at Glen Garden. Every Monday they had a pro-am; I was his partner and we won it every week. When my first wife, Louise, and I traveled the tour by car, we took Jack Grout along in our Ford roadster on a trip from Texas to California. His clubs fit into the little space behind our seats. Each time we stopped, his clubs would bump us. Finally, Louise said, "Either Jack goes or I go." I told her, "Jack's going."

    Who are the three best clutch putters of all time?

    Bobby Jones, Nicklaus and Tiger. Twelve years after Jones retired, Hogan and Henry Picard challenged the two of us to a match. They birdied 7 through 13 at Augusta National and never won a hole. Jones was very long and had great rhythm—he shot 32 on the back nine. He loved to play and always played well from tee to green, but didn't putt as well after he stopped playing competitively. But he got charged up that day—the old firehorse, he got going.

    When we started The Masters Champions Dinner in 1952, the players were critical of some of the holes. They would say, "We can't get to the back pin on number 5." Jones would say, "You're supposed to run the ball back." You could hear the ball land on the greens in those days, they were so firm. The players also complained about the front-left pin on number 3. Jones told them to hit a pitch with no spin to the front-right portion of the green—the ball could then roll left toward the hole so you could have a birdie putt.

    What did he say about trying to stop a ball on the 7th green?

    He didn't have an answer for that one except, "You're not supposed to birdie every hole."

    Weren't you nervous about hitting 3-wood to the 13th green in the final round when you first won The Masters in 1937?

    The Lord hates cowards. In those days, if you weren't careful you could hit a pitch into the swale of the 13th green and have it go right into the water. I hit 3-wood to 15 or 18 feet and chipped in for 3. So I started that final nine birdie, par, birdie, eagle.

    Would you say that first Masters was the most important championship you ever won?

    Yes. I was 25, the youngest man who ever won The Masters. I played such a fine round the first round—shot 66—and then faltered some. Then I played a great last nine to come back and win. That made me realize I had the ability to play well under stress. It did more for me than any other tournament.

    Your second wife, Peggy, told me that you had the bluest eyes she'd ever seen.

    I'm a very lucky man. Peggy does everything for me. She treats me like a king of kings. If it weren't for Peggy, I wouldn't be here. My mother liked her, too. She told Peggy, "You're pretty. I like you."

    Does it scare you to be the last man of your generation standing?

    I think about it, but it doesn't scare me.

    Do you think there's golf in heaven?

    Better be.

    What kind of course do you suppose they have?

    Well, knowing the good Lord as I do and trusting him like I do, I think we are going to like it.

    To what do you owe your longevity?

    My mother lived to be 98. Her father lived to 94. Her mother's father was riding a horse to visit one of his neighbors and fell off dead when he was 97.

    I never drank. I never smoked. I was 179 pounds when I left the tour in 1946, and I weigh 180 today. I get plenty of rest. I exercise. I've been active since I was born. I have only had real stress once in my life.

    Being stressed about tournaments doesn't hurt you. But when my first wife, Louise, who I was crazy about, became completely paralyzed except for her left hand for two years and seven months—that was stress. Because I lived with her and took care of her. That's stress.
    The life I have lived is a blessing. I have enjoyed it. I'm a church man, and I want to get to heaven. It's going to be something. I have a feeling we don't know how good it's going to be.

  • Match Play Challenge Payout Tip

    20 Dec 2009

    It's been a month since we launched match play challenges, and we hope you are enjoying yourselves. Some people have been confused about the payout they earn, so we wanted to help clarify how it works. The example we like to use is a game where each player challenges 100 credits. The credits you earn in such a challenge is 80 credits, and this has some people confused.

    If you put in 100 credits into the pot and so does your opponent, and you each pay the 10% fee, that is 90 + 90 = 180 credits. When you earn the 180 credit pot, you have to subtract that with the original 100 credits you put in, making your net gain 80 credits. There is a helpful forum post by nivlac that explains this in detail: http://wgt.com/forums/p/6617/41153.aspx#41153

    Hope this helps, and good luck!

  • New Experience on Bethpage, Free Avatar for a Limited Time, and Gifting

    17 Dec 2009

    Here are the highlights from today's product release. While we make an effort to include all updates made to the product, please note that occasionally some changes are unintentionally omitted.

    New Hole Locations on Bethpage Black – Tame the New Monster

    As our early holiday gift to you, new hole locations on Bethpage Black are now available! This feature is still in the early stages, so in this release we've made it available in practice and ranked rounds only. There are six sets of hole groups—two "easy", two "medium", and two "hard". In practice mode, you can choose any of the hole groups to play. In ranked rounds, the set you play will depend on your tier. For example, if you are a Master, you will get one of the two sets of "hard" hole groups. When playing in multiplayer ranked games, the hole group will be based on the host's tier.

    The current, default hole group will remain for all tournaments. We look forward to your feedback in the forums.

    For a Limited Time - Free New Avatar in the Pro Shop

    As a special offer for our holiday Beta players, we're giving away the "Going Green (Male 1)" avatar until the end of the year. Simply go to the detail page for this avatar and click BUY NOW (the price is 0 credits).

    Change your look in time for the new year! We now have different avatars for sale in the Pro Shop. Three new looks are available for each of the six avatar types, with more coming out in future releases. Browse them now, or read more.

    Gifting

    Just in time for the holidays, you can now purchase clubs, balls, and avatars for your friends. Items can be purchased for any WGT player or non-WGT friend (they will have to register to receive the gift). Pro and master level clubs and balls are not available for gifting, and you may not gift an item from your own inventory—you must purchase a new one.

    If you send a gift to a non-WGT member and that person registers to become a member, you will receive a free sleeve of WGT GI-D golf balls. If that person then deposits $10 or more at WGT, you will receive 200 credits in your account as a bonus! Read more >

    Ready-Go Tournaments

    Starting today, there will always be an open tournament for you to enter and earn credits. Our new Ready-Go tournaments will run 24/7, where as soon as 50 players enter the tournament, it is closed for new entries and a new tournament with the same parameters is automatically created. To start, we are offering two 100cr entry fee, 50-person limit tournaments with 4000cr payouts. All ready-go tournaments are single-play. Read more >

    Reputation Percentage

    A new Reputation Percentage indicator will show you how often you and other players complete multiplayer games. The indicator should give players a better sense about the person they are starting a game with and the likelihood that person will finish the game. Your reputation percentage is not affected by practice games or single-player games.

    When creating a multiplayer game, you can search for opponents with 50%+ or 75%+ completion rates. The rule only applies when you search for "Anyone". You can still manually invite players or friends who don't meet the reputation criteria you set. Everyone will start off with an 80% reputation percentage, and it will move up or down depending on your game completion rates. Read more >

    Invitation Decline Reason

    When you decline an invitation, you can now send a reason for your decline. The default message is "Already in a game", but if you choose "No thanks" you can also enter a customized message. The player who invited you will see the message in the game lobby.

    New Equipment in the Pro Shop - Available to All Tiers

    • TaylorMade Burner Beginner Club Set - More forgiving and slower swing meter, perfect for beginners.
    • TaylorMade Burner Plus Iron Set - More forgiving and a slower swing meter than the Burner Iron Set.
    • WGT Starter Plus Club Set - A low-priced clubset with a slow swing meter designed specifically for beginners.
    • GI2-D - Same as the GI-D, but one tick slower in the meter speed.
    • GI2-S - Same as the GI-S, but one tick slower in the meter speed.

    Match Play Rematch Button

    When you finish a match play game, you can now click a Rematch button and play again. Your opponent will have the option to accept or decline the rematch.

    Green Speed Setting for Multiplayer Practice Rounds

    You now have the ability to set green speeds in your multiplayer practice rounds.

    Bug Fixes

    • Players can no longer use Pro and Master tier clubs in tournaments that they entered as a lower tier player.
    • You should no longer receive duplicate email notifications for forum replies.
  • Scheduled System Maintenance 12/16 11PM PT

    15 Dec 2009

    Heads up, we are planning to make a product update on Wednesday, 12/16 starting at 11PM Pacific Time. The site will be down for approximately four hours. Please be sure to save your games before the downtime starts.

    We will post a list of the changes when the site is back up.

  • Pablo Martin Becomes First to Win on European Tour as Amateur and Pro

    14 Dec 2009

    By Ryan Ballengee

    Pablo Martin emerged victorious in the European Tour's first official event of their 2010 season (even if it's played in December 2009). With the win, Pablo Martin becomes the first man in European Tour history to have won on Tour as both an amateur and a professional.

    94371951_medium
    Warren Little/Getty Images

    Martin won the Alfred Dunhill Championship in South Africa. Aided by a second round 63, Martin held on for a one stroke win over Charl Schwartzel of South Africa.

    The Spaniard was the first amateur to ever win on the European Tour. He did so in 2007 by winning the Open de Portugal. That win, too, was by a shot - over Frenchman Raphael Jacquelin.

    For that win, Martin could not take prize money. This time, he took home 158,500 Euros.  The total prize pool was just 8,000 Euros smaller than last year.

  • This Week's Replay Highlights

    12 Dec 2009


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