Articles by Kieran Clark
Kieran is the Golfshake Community Editor and host of the Golfshake Podcast and regular writes in-depth opinion pieces focused on his love and passion for golf.
To view the rest of the Golfshake team of writers, testers and ambassadors click here.
Augusta National Looks Set for Course Changes
Augusta National looks set to undergo major changes for the first time in a decade, with preliminary site plans filed with local authorities noting a possible lengthening of the fifth hole at the iconic home of the Masters Tournament.
The Open Returns to St. Andrews for 150th Edition
It's been the worst kept secret in golf for years, but the R&A has officially announced that The Open Championship will return to the legendary Old Course at St. Andrews for the 150th playing of golf's oldest major in 2021.
Potter is Magic at Pebble as Aphibarnrat Triumphs Down Under
Ted Potter Jr. produced a marvellous round of golf to see off world number one Dustin Johnson and secure his second PGA Tour victory at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, while Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat defeated home favourite James Nitties 2 and 1 in the final of the uniquely formatted ISPS Handa Super 6 Perth in Australia.
Interview with England Golf's Disability Manager Jamie Blair
Making golf more inclusive and accessible. Golfshake's Kieran Clark spoke with England Golf's Disability Manager, Jamie Blair, to hear about the incredible work being done to introduce more people with disabilities and impairments to the game, and the positive difference it can make.
Explore All 18 Holes at Spectacular Pine Valley
Pine Valley is the Holy Grail for many golfers, but is largely unseen. However, that has now changed, thanks to this extraordinary drone footage taken by Golf Digest. Looking through all 18 holes, the spectacular bunkering and sheer scale of the property is evident.
New Rules on Video Reviews Close Door on Viewers Calling In at Tournaments
Following consultation with a comprehensive working group, The R&A and USGA have announced an updated set of protocols for video review in tournaments when applying the Rules of Golf, effectively closing the window on viewers calling in to report potential infractions that they have spotted on television.
Does Your Golf Club Have a Defibrillator?
Does your golf club have a defibrillator on site? It could make a difference and save lives. New research by St John Ambulance has discovered that potentially seven out of 10 people who suffer a cardiac arrest could survive if they are treated by a defibrillator within the first five minutes.
Justin Rose Named Host of 2018 British Masters at Walton Heath
Following recent and successful tradition, Justin Rose has been named as British Masters host for 2018, with the prestigious event moving to the superb Walton Health in Surrey. The highly regarded venue – widely remembered for welcoming the Ryder Cup in 1981 – has also been used for the European Open, Senior Open Championship, and has been the U.S. Open qualifying site since 2005.
Sky Sports Golf Looks Set to Retain Masters Live TV Rights
Earlier this year, it was revealed that Sky Sports' deal to showcase all four days of the Masters Tournament had ended without a renewal being immediately apparent. However, months down the line, that Sky is on the verge of agreeing a new contract with Augusta National officials.
Comeback Suggests Tiger's Latest Return May Not Be False Dawn
Tiger Woods largely impressed - and surprised - during his return to golf at the Hero World Challenge. Reflecting on previous comebacks, Golfshake's Kieran Clark believes this latest one feels significantly different and may suggest a glorious final chapter for the 14-time major champion.
Q-School Would Be Dramatic and Compelling Television
Majors and Tour Championships are great TV, but surely the purest exhibition of pressure within golf comes at the Final Stage of Qualifying School, the six-round gauntlet that whittles down hundreds of hopefuls into a select few who ensure themselves of status on the European Tour.
Great History of the European Tour Order of Merit and Race to Dubai
The European Tour season comes to its natural conclusion this week as Tommy Fleetwood, Justin Rose and Sergio Garcia battle for the Race to Dubai and Harry Vardon Trophy. Golfshake's Kieran Clark looks back at the history of the Order of Merit, and reflects on its significance.
Tiger Woods Announces Latest Return to Competitive Golf
Nine months after withdrawing from the Dubai Desert Classic, Tiger Woods has announced that he will be making his latest comeback to professional golf at next month’s Hero World Challenge.
Paul Casey to Rejoin European Tour in Ryder Cup Boost
It's been a decade since Paul Casey last represented Europe in the Ryder Cup, but the Englishman looks set to end that long-standing hiatus after confirming that he will take up membership on the European Tour in 2018, opening the door to become part of Thomas Bjorn's team for the showpiece at Le Golf National next year.
Golfshake Stats Reveal Odds of Making Hole in One
You have probably seen the hilarious video from the European Tour that challenged Edoardo Molinari to make a hole-in-one with 500 golf balls. It got us thinking about the averages and odds of making a hole-in-one and how they relate to regular golfers. Delving into the Golfshake Score Tracker stats from this summer - in which tens of thousands regularly record their rounds - we have drawn up statistical conclusions as to how likely you are of achieving that most magical of shots
European Tour to Debut 40 Second Shot Clock in 2018
Next year's Shot Clock Masters in Austria on the European Tour will be the first official tournament to use a shot clock on every shot as the circuit looks to combat the increasingly lengthy time it is taking for the top professionals to complete 18 holes.
Jordan Spieth Donates Famous Open 3-Iron to Royal Birkdale
Jordan Spieth’s dramatic Open Championship victory in July will live long in the memory, and it has been permanently immortalised at Royal Birkdale after the young American donated his Titleist 718 T-MB 3-Iron that helped to carry the Texan to success over Matt Kuchar and secure the Claret Jug.
Rory McIlroy Sets Major Career Goals for 2018 and Beyond
Rory McIlroy completed a disappointing season at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, but as Kieran Clark writes, the Northern Irishman is now looking forward to gearing himself up for a major 2018, targeting several lofty objectives next year and throughout the rest of his career.
How to Get a Tee Time on the Old Course at St Andrews
The Old Course at St. Andrews is the most revered and hallowed of grounds. It's most accessible of the big-name destinations to play, even though it’s undeniably the most popular. There are several available routes onto that landmark first tee, and we’ve brought them together for you.
Nick Dougherty Talks Career, St Andrews, Sky, Niall Horan, and Growing Golf
Having bowed out from competitive golf last year, Nick Dougherty tells Golfshake's Kieran Clark about his love for working at Sky Sports Golf, and is ambition to help share the game widely and raise awareness of the benefits that it can make to the lives of people in need.
New Dad Tommy Fleetwood Steps Back Onto Favourite Stage
New father Tommy Fleetwood steps back into the competitive environment of the European Tour at his favourite destination on the circuit, as he looks to extend his lead at the summit of the Race to Dubai after enjoying a sparkling season to date.
Rory McIlroy is Enjoying Return to the Dunhill Links
Rory McIlroy is bringing down the curtain on his 2017 season this week at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, and he’s enjoying a long overdue return to the showpiece event at the Home of Golf that saw him secure his tour card as a fledgling professional a decade ago.
New Events, Revised Dates and Innovative Formats Define 2018 European Tour
The European Tour season has several considerably important weeks to come, but that hasn’t stopped the game’s most international and diverse circuit from unveiling its full 2018 schedule, which includes new events, revised dates, and innovative formats.
Rory McIlroy Looks Forward to Refreshed and Healthier 2018
Rory McIlroy is already looking forward to a required period of respite from the game as he builds towards better things in 2018, with his fortnightly UK season-ending sojourn beginning in earnest this week at the eagerly anticipated British Masters from Close House in Newcastle.
Matthew Southgate Assessed Four Shot Penalty after Leaf Strikes Ball
In just the latest example of golf's regularly baffling rules tripping up an unsuspecting player, Matthew Southgate - the popular Englishman who is attempting to secure a PGA Tour card - found himself the victim of a four-shot penalty following a bizarre incident that saw his ball struck by a leaf as he attempted to hole a putt.
Justin Thomas Completes Incredible Year with FedEx Cup Triumph
Justin Thomas completed a sensational and already lucrative season by unlocking the $10m cash box of the FedEx Cup after pipping Jordan Spieth in the rankings, as fellow young American Xander Schauffele won the Tour Championship to secure his second victory on the PGA Tour.
Catriona Matthew Named 2019 Solheim Cup Captain
Scotland’s very own Catriona Matthew has been unveiled as Europe’s Solheim Cup captain for the 2019 edition at Gleneagles. The 48-year-old, a widely respected veteran of nine matches, was unquestionably the natural choice to lead the home team in Perthshire, taking on the honourable position just 80 miles from her residence of North Berwick.
Rory McIlroy Enters British Masters
This month's British Masters presented by Sky Sports was already set to be a major highlight on the calendar, but anticipation will only increase over the coming week in the north-east of England with the news that Rory McIlroy has confirmed his participation in the event at Close House, which is to be hosted by Lee Westwood.
Anna Nordqvist Secures Second Major Title at Evian
Sweden’s Anna Nordqvist secured her second major title at the weather-shortened Evian Championship, overcoming the largely unheralded American Brittany Altomare in a playoff.
Marc Leishman Completes Impressive Victory at BMW Championship
Australia’s Marc Leishman completed an impressive wire-to-wire victory in the BMW Championship to banish the memories of a disappointing loss in his previous event to secure a third victory on the PGA Tour and move into one of the coveted top five positions on the FedEx Cup standings before the season-ending Tour Championship.
Teenage South Korean Golfer Draws Attention on EuroPro Tour
When it comes to the constantly evolving landscape of professional golf, we’re always looking out for emerging talent and potential stars jostling for position under the radar. Min Kyu Kim plays on the EuroPro Tour - and won three times in August. He is only 16 and possesses an incredible golf swing.
Remarkable Stacy Lewis Donates Prize Money to Houston Relief Fund
Stacy Lewis picked up her first LPGA Tour victory in three years at the Portland Classic, but that fact was overshadowed by the American’s remarkable gesture of donating her entire prize money – all $195,000 of it – to the relief fund for victims of Storm Harvey in her hometown of Houston.
Tiger Set to Step Back Into Positive Limelight at Presidents Cup
Tiger Woods looks set to step back into the public environment of competitive golf next month at the Presidents Cup in New Jersey, when he is expected to serve as one of Steve Stricker's assistant captains for the United States team.
Rory McIlroy to Skip Race to Dubai and Conclude Season Early
Rory McIlroy has confirmed that his 2017 season will conclude earlier than originally planned, with the Northern Irishman set to pass on competing in the European Tour’s Race to Dubai finale later in the autumn.
Fun Solheim Cup Highlights Need for More Team Match Play Events
When you consider the enthusiasm created by the Solheim Cup - and indeed the Ryder Cup - why doesn't golf have more team match play events. Golfshake's Kieran Clark believes we should seek to push the format throughout the game.
English Pair Lead Europe's Solheim Cup Bid
English pair Melissa Reid and Charley Hull will spearhead Europe’s bid to reclaim the Solheim Cup today in Des Moines, Iowa. Captain Annika Sorenstam outlined her pairings for the always crucial Friday morning foursomes, with America’s maestro Juli Inkster opting for the formidable duo of Cristie Kerr and world number two Lexi Thompson
Closer Look at Both Solheim Cup Teams
Two years on from that dramatic and controversial finish in Germany, the Solheim Cup is back. We take a closer look at both teams - led by Juli Inkster and Annika Sorenstam - and see who the key players could be this week for the United States and Europe.
PGA Championship is Fitting and Perfect Major Stage for Justin Thomas
Son and Grandson of PGA Professionals, Justin Thomas' dramatic major victory at the PGA Championship was the perfect stage and moment for the 24-year-old to achieve his huge breakthrough. Golfshake's Kieran Clark looks at why it was an extra special achievement for the American.
Rory McIlroy Says Season Could be Over
Following the completion of the 99th PGA Championship at Quail Hollow - a venue where he had previously been dominant - four-time major champion Rory McIlroy stated that he may be required to miss the remainder of this season as he seeks to fully recover from a rib injury that has blighted his year, leading him to only competing in 13 tournament this year.
Jordan & Rory and the Race for the Grand Slam
Jordan Spieth has the opportunity to make history and complete the Career Grand Slam at Quail Hollow this week. Rory McIlroy just needs the Masters to join the most exclusive of golf clubs. Who will get there first? Golfshake's Kieran Clark looks at the race to sporting immortality.
Rory Comfortable at Quail Hollow for PGA
Rory McIlroy is excited about the prospect of this week's PGA Championship at Quail Hollow, one of his favourite venues. The Northern Irishman is looking for his first major in years, and this is the timely stage for him to succeed.
In Kyung Kim Secures Deserved Major Redemption at Kingsbarns
In-Kyung Kim banished the horrors of squandering a major chance at the ANA Inspiration five years ago to produce a two-shot victory in the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Kingsbarns, despite the best efforts of England’s Jodi Ewart Shadoff who was simply brilliant in the rain.
Field Chasing Dominant I.K. Kim at Women's British Open
South Korea’s In-Kyung Kim will take a commanding six-shot lead into the final day of the Ricoh Women’s British Open following an impressively metronomic and controlled exhibition on Saturday, after a superb bogey-free round of 66 on a changeable afternoon of weather on the East Neuk of Fife at the stunning Kingsbarns Golf Links.
Dustin Johnson Smashes 439 Yard Drive at WGC
World number one Dustin Johnson is renowned as being one of the games' biggest hitters, but his effort on the lengthy 16th hole during the first round of the WGC Bridgstone Invitational at Firestone caught attention as he smashed the record books to strike the longest drive on the PGA Tour in four years with a tee shot of 439 yards.
Georgia Hall Tops British Challenge at Kingsbarns
Georgia Hall tops what has been a memorable two days for English golf at the Women’s British Open, holding the clubhouse lead after her second round at Kingsbarns. The 21-year-old from Bournemouth has long been touted as a potential star in the game, and we’re seeing evidence of that with a sparkling performance thus far in the East Neuk of Fife.
Dame Laura Turns Back Clock on Promising Day for English Golfers at Women's Open
The Cross of Saint George featured prominently on the leaderboards at Kingsbarns throughout a memorable opening day for the English at the Ricoh Women’s British Open, with Jodi Ewart Shadoff, Mel Reid, Charley Hull, Georgia Hall and the legendary Dame Laura Davies all in early contention.
Fit and Happy Michelle Wie Produces Masterful Display at Kingsbarns
Armed with highly lofted woods, a relaxed mind, and recovered body, Michelle Wie produced a masterful display of low scoring on a receptive morning at Kingsbarns to lead the Ricoh Women's British Open after shooting an eight-under round of 64.
Rory McIlroy Comments on J.P. Fitzgerald Split
Rory McIlroy caused a stir on Monday when it was reported that he had parted ways with long-time caddie J.P. Fitzgerland. Ahead of the WGC Bridgestone Invitational, the Northern Irishman commented on that split and the reasons behind it.
Charley Hull Leads Home Favourites Dreaming of Success at British Open
It’s been eight years since Catriona Matthew won the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Royal Lytham & St. Annes. This week at Kingsbarns, the likes of Charley Hull, Jodie Ewart Shadoff and Georgia Hall are hoping to secure a home victory.
Lexi Thompson Banking on Experience of Scottish Caddie at Kingsbarns
Lexi Thompson is hoping the vast local experience of her Scottish caddie will prove invaluable as she looks to secure a second major title at the 41st Ricoh Women’s British Open at Kingsbarns.
Majestic Kingsbarns is the Perfect Stage for Ricoh Women's British Open
The majestic Kingsbarns Golf Links is tasting major championship golf for the first time this week as host of the 41st Ricoh Women’s British Open, and the field has been universal in their praise for a course that promises to be the perfect stage for the best female golfers in the world.
Dame Laura Davies Qualifies for 37th Women's British Open
Dame Laura Davies secured her place in the Women's British Open for a record 37th occasion following a dramatic day of final qualifying at the Castle Course, St. Andrews. The 1986 champion survived a remarkable 14-player playoff, with 11 remaining places available into the season's final major at the spectacular Kingsbarns Golf Links
Rory McIlroy Reportedly Sacks Long-time Caddie JP Fitzgerald
Four-time major champion Rory McIlroy has reportedly sacked long-time caddie JP Fitzgerald after nine years together on tour. According to Reuters, the 28-year-old will have a new man on the bag this week at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio, before the US PGA Championship at one of the Northern Irishman's most favoured venues, Quail Hollow.
BT Sport Move to Secure Masters Broadcasting Rights from Sky
Following the confirmation that the US PGA Championship - the year's final men's major - is to be shown live on the BBC, Sky Sports is facing an additional blow to its newly launched golf channel with the revelation that the broadcaster has thus far failed to agree a contract renewal to present the Masters Tournament from Augusta National.
Mixed Response to US PGA Coming to BBC
In shock news for Sky Sports subscribers, it was revealed that the year's fourth major - the PGA Championship - will be televised on the BBC. We canvassed the opinions of golf viewers, and it's fair to say that the response has been mixed.
Jordan Spieth is the Rarest of Gems and We Should Marvel at Him
Jordan Spieth cemented his place alongside the legends of golf on an unforgettable Sunday at Royal Birkdale. Golfshake's Kieran Clark looks at what makes the young American so special and why we should marvel at his talents.
Henrik Stenson Left Shocked After Rental House Burgled
Defending Open champion Henrik Stenson experienced a shock on Thursday after his opening round at Royal Birkdale, discovering that his rented home for the week had been burgled, with personal items and his clothing being stolen during the afternoon when the house was empty.
Rejuvenated Ian Poulter Feeling Confident at Open after Fine Start
Last year, Ian Poulter was nursing a foot injury while providing a touch of commentary at Royal Troon for Sky Sports. However, 12 months on, the 41-year-old is back feeling rejuvenated and is in contention for his first major title following an opening-round of 67 at Royal Birkdale.
Rory McIlroy Overcomes Horror Start with Stunning Recovery at Birkdale
Rory McIlroy overcame a horror start to the 146th Open Championship at Royal Birkdale with a thrilling back-nine to keep his hopes of securing the Claret Jug for a second time just about alive.
PGA Championship to be Broadcast Live on the BBC
Following the shock revelation that Sky Sports had failed to agree a new contract with the PGA of America to show the final major of the year, the BBC has fended off the likes of BT Sport and Twitter to secure a contract that will see next month's PGA Championship air live on public television
Your Scottish Golf Photos
To mark this week's Scottish Open from Ayrshire's Dundonald Links, we asked you on Twitter and Facebook to send us your best photos taken when playing golf in Scotland. The response surpassed all expectations, with dozens of you taking the opportunity to share images from across the spectacular nation, from the Highlands to St. Andrews and East Lothian, the likes of Muirfield and Carnoustie to the Isle of Arran and Perthshire.
Tour all 18 Holes of Dundonald Links
This week's Scottish Open venue Dundonald Links is set to be widely showcased the world, and it will be the first time seeing the course for many people. Take a look around all 18 holes of the layout that will challenge the likes of Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson and Rickie Fowler.
The Longest Golf Holes in the UK
We now see holes measuring over 600 yards regularly in major championships, but there are several closer to home in the UK that regular golfers can experience for themselves. Take a look through some of the most eye-watering holes in Britain.
Phil and Bones Part Ways after 25 Years on Tour
They were the most enduring of partnerships, defying the often precarious and short-lived dynamic between player and caddie, but it has been confirmed that Phil Mickelson and long-term companion on tour Jim "Bones" Mackay have parted company after 25 years.
Chronicling the Unique and Determined Career Path of Brooks Koepka
From the peaks of Aviemore to the highs of Erin Hills, Sunday in Wisconsin was the major culmination in what has been a unique career progression for Brooks Koepka, whose professional life began on Europe’s uncompromising second circuit, before impressively ascending through the ranks to the upper echelons of the game within four years. Challenge Tour to the U.S. Open.
Most Notable Father and Son Combinations in Golf History
Ahead of Father's Day, we take a look through some of the most famous and successful Father-Son combinations in golf. From Old and Young Tom Morris to Davis and Dru Love, there many examples of sons following their dads into the game.
Confident Rory Dismisses Critics of Fescue Rough at Erin Hills
Four-time major champion Rory McIlroy has dismisses critics of the thick, fescue rough that has been widely documented at this weeks U.S. Open, after the USGA had decided to cut back much of the long grass on four holes at Erin Hills.
Ten of the Most Difficult US Opens
Renowned as the most unrelentingly punishing test in the game, we take a look back through the archives to discover which U.S. Open have been the most difficult and resulted in the highest scores.
Rory McIlroy Praises US Open Venue
Rory McIlroy returns from injury at the US Open this week, and has been quick to praise the contentious venue Erin Hills, which has drawn a wide variety of responses. However, the 2011 champion is viewing the challenge positively.
Kevin Na Demonstrates Unplayable Fescue Rough at Erin Hills
This year's US Open venue Erin Hills has drawn a wide range of responses, with its significant fescue rough grabbing most attention. Kevin Na demonstrated just how unplayable this long grass will be, likely reducing the game's best players into hackers should they miss a fairway.
Rory McIlroy Set for US Open after Quinta Do Lago Stay
It's been a frustrating season for Rory McIlroy to date, having missed significant periods of the year through injury, but the four-time major champion has confirmed his return at next week's U.S. Open at Erin Hills, after spending a fortnight at the stunning Quinta do Lago Resort in Portugal.
Padraig Harrington Injured by Amateur Golfer
Three-time major champion Padraig Harrington has withdrawn from this week's FedEx St. Jude Classic after suffering a bizzare injury, after being struck on the elbow by an amateur golfer he was coaching in a session.
In conversation with John Huggan
Kieran Clark recently sat down at the Dunhill Links with golf correspondent John Huggan to discuss all things golf.
Interview: Making Birdies - Golf & Nature
Kieran Clark interviews wildlife filmmaker Bertie Allison about his film project which looks at the work of the Golf Environment Organisation focusing on Blairgowrie Golf Club and the St. Andrews Links showing how golf and nature can thrive together.
Interview: Golfing around Ireland - Kevin Markham
Kieran Clark caught up with Kevin Markham author of 'Hooked' - an Amateur's guide to the golf courses of Ireland, to chat about his travels and experiences playing around Ireland, discuss his story, his two books, and to provide a useful introduction for any potential visitors to the island.
Tom Watson Farewell
Ten years ago, Jack Nicklaus crossed the Swilcan Bridge for the final time in competition and now, a decade on from Jack’s day, it is Tom Watson’s turn. After 40 years and five victories, the 144th Open Championship will be the last one of Watson’s incredible career.
Open Championship Preview
Winning the Open Championship at St. Andrews. It is one of the great and most notable feats in sport. The chance for indelible greatness only comes round once every five years, when the very best players in the world are presented with that enticing opportunity to be triumphant in golf’s oldest major championship on the game’s most historic course.
Scottish Open champion and links lover Rickie Fowler is all set for St. Andrews
For years, Rickie Fowler has spoken of his love and appreciation for the original form of the sport. At the magnificent Gullane Golf Club, the Scottish Open would be the event where that reverence and positivity had finally converted itself into a victory.
McDowell - Still Fighting And Grinding
Kieran Clark looks at the recent performances of Graeme McDowell. In 2015, McDowell has competed in 15 events around the world where he's struggled to find any form or any kind of tangible success but that may be set to change.
AAM Scottish Open Day 3 Wrap Up
Day 3 wrap up from the AAM Scottish opne. Grit and determination required in the third round, as the previously benign links began to show its teeth.
Chambers Bay - Fear of the Unknown
The United States Open has long established a fearsome reputation as being routinely the most brutally difficult of golf’s four grand slam championships.
Growing Junior Golf - Interview with PGA Pro Allan Knox
How do we attract more kids to the game? It is arguably the most important question to be answered in golf. Kieran Clark interviews PGA Pro Allan Knox and finds out what they have been doing at King James VI.
Davis Love III to Captain US 2016 Ryder Cup Team ?
The surprise revelation that Davis Love III – who captained the US Team in 2012 – is to return in the role next year at Hazeltine was met with a whole variety of responses on social media on Monday evening.
Billy Casper - A great amongst greats
Kieran Clark looks back over the life and golfing times of one the greats of the game. Billy Casper passed away last week leaving a behind a career that may may have been one of the most underated of all time.
10 of the best - Scottish Courses under £50
We take a look at 10 of the best courses that Scotland has to offer for under £50. There are some amazing courses in the list including the Kyle Phillips designed Dundonald Links.
2015 Long Drivers European Tour
The Long Drivers European Tour is the only circuit of its kind in the world, and it returns for a third season in 2015. The game’s biggest hitters will compete in events across Europe this year, with two-time champion Joe Miller looking to secure a third consecutive Long Driving title.
Scotland - 10 of the best under £100
Here are ten courses that cost no more than £100 that would enhance anyone’s golfing résumé. And don’t say it too loudly, but you may find that one or two of them are that little bit better than their pricier cousins.