When Darren Clarke’s wife Heather died of cancer in 2006, the entire golf community mourned. But in the last five years, Clarke’s life has turned around a little. Last year, he got engaged to Miss Northern Ireland Alison Campbell, and after round two of the British Open on Friday, Clarke and American Lucas Glover are tied for the lead at -4.
Clarke, who is 42 years of age, is trying to become the third golfer from Northern Ireland to win a major. Graeme McDowell won the 2010 United States Open and Rory McIlroy won the 2011 United States Open.
Glover, meanwhile, is no stranger to major success himself, as he won the 2009 United States Open at Bethpage Black in New York.
However, Clarke and Glover are just the co-leaders in southeast England and have a long ways to go. A remarkable 31 players are within four strokes of the lead. Martin Kaymer and Miguel Angel Jimenez are in a group at -3, Americans Tom Lehman, Davis Love III and Dustin Johnson are in a group at -2, Adam Scott, Phil Mickelson and English amateur Tom Lewis are in a group at -1, and Y.E. Yang, Zach Johnson, Steve Stricker, Rory McIlroy and Sergio Garcia are in a group at even.
TSN’s coverage begins at 4am Saturday morning. I’m waking up when Garcia is teeing off, at 5:25am Mountain Time.
Here’s the other events I’ll be watching this weekend:
Saturday–11am–MLB–New York Yankees @ Toronto Blue Jays–Sportsnet–In a very good pitching matchup, C.C. Sabathia goes for the Yankees (13-4, 126 K, 2.72 ERA) against Ricky Romero for the Blue Jays (7-8, 101 K, 3.09 ERA). The Yankees hold the American League Wildcard at 53-36 and are a game and a half back of the American League East Division leading Boston Red Sox. The Yankees will be without all-star third baseman Alex Rodriguez who is out with knee surgery and the Blue Jays will likely be without all-star Jose Bautista who is day-to-day with a twisted ankle. Toronto is 46-47.
Saturday–2pm–CFL–Saskatchewan Roughriders @ Hamilton Tiger-Cats–TSN–Two teams that are winless at 0-2 to start the 2011 season will finally get in the win column. The Roughriders currently have the worst defense in the CFL. That is actually very surprising because long-time defensive guru Greg Marshall is their head coach. It will be interesting to see if Marshall, or former Eskimo head coach Richie Hall (currently the defensive co-ordinator) will be in Saskatchewan long if they lose Saturday. The Tiger-Cats meanwhile will be without wide receiver Arland Bruce who has a knee injury. Former Eskimo Maurice Mann has been Kevin Glenn’s primary target, as he has 173 yards receiving in the first two games.
Saturday–2pm–MLB–Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim @ Oakland Athletics–FOX–One of the hottest teams in baseball takes one one of the coldest. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are 50-42 and are now only a game and a half back of the American League West Division leading Texas Rangers and four games back of the New York Yankees in the American League Wildcard chase. The Athletics meanwhile are 39-53. The pitching matchup in this one should be exciting. Jered Weaver, the American League starter, starts for the Angels (11-4, 120 K, 1.86 ERA), while Trevor Cahill (8-7, 91 K, 3.12) starts for Oakland.
Saturday–5pm–CFL–British Columbia Lions @ Edmonton Eskimos–TSN–The Eskimos are 2-0 and are looking for a third straight win against the 0-2 Lions. This game will be a revenge opportunity for running back Jerome Messam, who was cut last year by the Lions after he was in a locker room fight with wide receiver Paris Jackson and was convicted for beating a bouncer at a London night club. We know that Eskimos’ GM Eric Tillman is one that is open for second chances, but a third? Well, I guess. Messam has made the most out of his opportunity in Edmonton to date, and was dominant against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats as he ran 104 yards on 17 carries last week. The Lions are much better than their 0-2 record. They only lost in Montreal by four points and to the Calgary Stampeders last week by two points.
Sunday–12:30pm–Women’s World Cup–United States vs. Japan–CBC–In the biggest women’s soccer game of the year, the surprise Japanese take on the Olympic Champion Americans from Frankfurt, Germany. Homare Sawa of Japan leads the tournament in goals with four. The Japanese have been one of the most interesting stories of the tournament. They shocked Germany, and then had a brilliant second half against Team Sweden. Throughout the last month, they have been highly praised for their proficient tactics. The United States meanwhile are led by forward Abby Wombach and goaltender Hope Solo. The soccer world should still be buzzing by the impressive American 3-2 victory over Brazil in the quarterfinals.
Tags: abby wombach, adam scott, alison campbell, boston red sox, british columbia lions, british open, c.c. sabathia, darren clarke, davis love iii, dustin johnson, Edmonton Eskimos, eric tillman, graeme mcdowell, hamilton tiger-cats, heather clarke, homare sawa, hope solo, jered weaver, jerome messam, kevin glenn, los angeles angels of anaheim, lucas glover, martin kaymer, maurice mann, miguel angel jimenez, New York Yankees, oakland athletics, phil mickelson, ricky romero, rory mcilroy, saskatchewan roughiders, sergio garcia, steve stricker, texas rangers, tom lehman, tom lewis, toronto blue jays, trevor cahill, women's world cup, y.e. yang, zach johnson