Watson plays as virtual Bubba at Kapalua

Bubba Watson during the 2009 Masters.

Bubba Watson during the 2009 Masters.

KAPALUA, Hawaii – Funny scene from Tuesday at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions: Long-hitting Bubba Watson is standing inside a hospitality tent off the first fairway at Kapalua’s Plantation Course, there to help unveil a new game from EA Sports: Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12: The Masters.

(Tiger isn’t here, by the way; for the first time in his pro career, he didn’t qualify, even though he hasn’t shown up at Kapalua since 2005.)

Anyway, taking on Augusta National as a virtual Bubba Watson, Watson swings the controller and “belts” his drive on the par-5 second hole, but it runs and runs and comes to rest on the left edge of the right-side fairway bunker. Not a good break for the left-hander. So the virtual Bubba Watson steps into the bunker, and playing the ball well above his feet outside the bunker, absolutely smokes a fairway wood that finishes in front of the green. Great shot. 

The real Bubba, to no one in particular, then mutters aloud, “I WISH I was that good.”

By the way, the new Tiger Woods game has incredible detail, showing Augusta National in all her beauty, and is going to be a huge hit. The key additions: A new caddie feature, something called Career Mode – where one can play his way from the amateur ranks through the Nationwide Tour and onto the PGA Tour – and the added voices of Jim Nantz and David Feherty from CBS. Oh, did we say the game features Augusta National for the very first time?

Pretty cool. 

Its U.S. release is slated for March 29. 


Hyundai Tournament of Champions

Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index

  1. Steve Stricker
  2. Matt Kuchar
  3. Graeme McDowell
  4. Jim Furyk
  5. Francesco Molinari
  6. Dustin Johnson
  7. Ernie Els
  8. Camilo Villegas
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  10. Zach Johnson
  11. Tim Clark
  12. Justin Rose
  13. Adam Scott
  14. Jason Day
  15. Ian Poulter
  16. Heath Slocum
  17. Geoff Ogilvy
  18. Bubba Watson
  19. Hunter Mahan
  20. Bill Haas
  21. Charley Hoffman
  22. Carl Pettersson
  23. Anthony Kim
  24. Jonathan Byrd
  25. Jason Bohn
  26. Arjun Atwal
  27. Stuart Appleby
  28. Ryan Palmer
  29. Robert Garrigus
  30. Rocco Mediate
  31. Derek Lamely
  32. Matt Bettencourt
  33. Bill Lunde
  34. Cameron Beckman
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