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Golf Life: Celebrity News

VENUS ENVY In March, tennis superstar Venus Williams brought her two-fisted backhand to VH1's Fairway to Heaven event at Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Florida. Trouble is, she wasn't holding a tennis racket. Never having swung a golf club before, Williams gripped her seven-iron "left hand low," reports Tom Henderson, the head pro at Round Hill Club in Greenwich, Connecticut. "She felt she could generate more power that way." Henderson teamed up with Brad Worthington of Fairfield, Connecticut's Brooklawn Country Club to work with Williams at the event's celebrity skills competition, hosted by the Boca Raton Resort & Club. Williams repositioned her hands, and after hitting a lot of ground shots with topspin, she was soon getting the ball airborne. "She's an amazing athlete," says Henderson. "My only real advice to her was: Hit up and the ball goes down; hit down and the ball goes up."

GOLF, ACTUALLY Nobody had a better Easter Sunday than Phil Mickelson—except maybe Hugh Grant and Kyle MacLachlan, who played two rounds at Enniscrone Golf Club in County Sligo as the second leg of a 108-hole weekend in Ireland. After a Saturday on the links at Doonbeg, the single-digit handicappers choppered into Enniscrone for a 7:40 a.m. tee time and lunched at the clubhouse with club captain Paul Quinn before joining him for a second crack at the Eddie Hackett-Donald Steel links. Grant reciprocated Quinn's hospitality with an invitation to join him at Sunningdale, the venerable English club where he is a member, and contributed $1,684 to a local charity. Autographs and photographs with fans followed. The two actors, who would play the Carne Golf Links the next day, then flew back to their rooms at County Mayo's plush Newport House, where, thanks to the time difference, they caught all of the Masters drama on the telly.

DD AT CCCC Remember David Duval?While everyone's been waiting to see if he can return to form, he's been waiting for the phone to ring. The former number one in the world, who married Susie Persichitte in March, joined Cherry Creek Country Club in Denver and, more recently, nearby Cherry Hills. Although the Duvals live in tony Cherry Hills Village, the legendary country club, which will host the next U.S. Women's Open, waitlisted the 2001 British Open champion for several months until finally extending its hand. Meanwhile, Cherry Creek is basking in cache. In addition to Duval, the two-year-old Nicklaus-Nicklaus II design counts Gary McCord as a member.

KISS AND (NO) MAKEUP Forget titanium; heavy metal rules the fairways these days. Just when we'd grown accustomed to Poison, Iron Maiden, Mötley Crüe and Alice Cooper on the links, Kiss front men Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons turn out to be major PGA Tour fans who count among their favorites Pat Perez and Shaun Micheel (whom they phoned to invite to a concert of theirs after Micheel won last year's PGA). Reports put the band members—sans signature makeup—at the Ridge at Castle Pines North in Colorado last fall. Let's just hope this doesn't lead to Ozzy Osbourne showing up in plus fours.


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