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Friday, August 25, 2000

Randall returns

KU coach captains U.S. team in England

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Ross Randall has completed the first leg of his world golf tour.

Randall, Kansas University's veteran golf coach, returned Thursday from Hoylake, England where his United States Palmer Cup team fell to Great Britain/Ireland, 121/2 to 111/2, in a collegiate all-star competition at Royal Liverpool Golf Clue.

A week from Saturday, Randall will take five KU golfers to Tokyo for the Topy Cup Tournament.

"Right now, I'm a little out of it. I went through seven time zones today," Randall said while driving to Lawrence from KC International Airport. "I can appreciate what Gary Player (PGA golfer from South Africa) and those guys go through."

Randall's eight-man team of U.S. collegiate golfers nearly kept the Palmer Cup, which America won last year.

A dramatic 25-foot putt by Britain-Ireland's Phillip Roe on the 18th and final hole beat Clemson's Jonathan Byrd and won the Cup for the home team.

"If he misses, the Cup is tied and we keep it because we won last year," Randall said. "At the awards dinner I said I hope Phillip Roe remembers that putt all his life, because it was monumental. To make a putt like that with so much on the line before a huge gallery ... it's unbelievable. It was 'Tiger-ish.'

"My guys were really sad and I was sad, too. They were heartbroken they couldn't tie or win. But you have to give credit to the other guy," Randall added.

The U.S. now has won two Cups, lost one and tied one.

"It was a wonderful experience," Randall said. "There was a lot of pomp and circumstance at the club. I enjoyed working with those guys and they said even though we lost they want me to be back as captain next year. That won't happen, but it makes me feel good."

Members of the U.S. team: Lucas Glover, Nick Cassini, John Engler, Clemson; Chris Wisler, East Tennessee State; Andy Sanders, Houston; Andy Miller, BYU; Jeff Klauk, Florida Southern.

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