Tuesday, September 03, 2002

Injuries change Duval's career

Senior Tour golfer doesn't play much

By Dustin Dow, ddow@enquirer.com
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MAINEVILLE — Bob Duval spends a lot of time at the practice range to stay on par with the rest of the Senior PGA Tour players. That's because he doesn't get to play every week like the Tour regulars.

        Duval is so low on the money list that he has to go to the Monday qualifying tournament or get an exemption from the director just to play in one tournament.

    What: Kroger Senior Classic at TPC at River's Bend.
    When: Today-Sunday.
    Today's events: Player practice at TPC at River's Bend, all day; SPGA Tour Wives' Skins game, back nine, 1 p.m.; Media Skins game, back nine, 1:15 p.m.; Argosy Skins Game, back nine, 1:30 p.m.
    Directions to TPC at River's Bend: I-71 North to Exit 28 (State Rte. 48). Follow signs to parking.
    Also today: Tournament qualifying at Four Bridges Country Club in Mason, 8 a.m.
        So far, he's gotten seven exemptions this year, including one for this weekend's Kroger Senior Classic at the Tournament Players Club at River's Bend.

        “I don't bother with that Monday qualifying,” Duval said. “I just apply for an exemption, and if they think I can help the tournament, they call.”

        Tournaments can give up to four exemptions and they usually go to players who will bring some name recognition. Duval is the father of David Duval, former No.1 player in the world on the PGA Tour, pre-Tiger Woods.

        David Duval has always been known as one of the most physically fit players on the PGA Tour. While he is slim, Bob Duval's 55-year-old body is breaking down.

        An SPGA regular four years ago, he had to play with a medical exemption in 1999 after breaking his elbow on a tree stump while trying to hit a golf ball. A year later, he tore the meniscus in his left knee and has been bothered by it since.

        The medical exemption has expired, which means Duval has to go back to qualifying school in November if he wants to get back on the regular Tour.

        “I'm just trying to play decent right now,” Duval said. “I don't have a lot of expectations. The other golfers are pulling for me, though, and they're always asking about the knee. If I have a bad round, they'll come up and say, "You can do better than that.”'


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