September 18, 2009
You already know that 2009 is shaping up to be the year of the Celebrity Death, but let's take a little more positive view, shall we? 2009 also saw the return of Tom Watson and the commemoration of Arnold Palmer, so why not an encore performance by 49-year-old Juli Inkster?
The seven-time major winner currently sits two strokes back of the lead at the Samsung World Championships. As Mostly Harmless notes, Inkster's round was a model of opportunistic play and survival skills. While she hit only nine fairways and 12 greens in regulation, she started with three birdies in the first seven holes and closed with two birdies over the final three holes.
Inkster's interview wasn't exactly enlightening: "I thought hit some really good iron shots today. I putted very good today. Had a few wayward drives, but I was able to save it with a nice put or something like that, but I played pretty consistent."
She's been in the Hall of Fame since 2000 thanks to the LPGA's performance-based philosophy toward enshrinement. And while she may not be able to close out the Samsung -- her best finish all year is a tie for 10th -- she's at least started strong. And for anybody, young or ... experienced, that's all you can ask.