Professional golf returned this past weekend. We were all once again reminded that our personal golf skills are still light years behind the pros. Dan Berger’s ten-footer at the 72nd to get to a playoff hole was clutch. Bryson DeChambeau averaged 345 yards off the tee with his driver. Jon Rahm chipped in from under the trees for a birdie on a par-3. These are all spectacles we’ve come to expect from our favorite pro golfers. It’s why we watch the game on TV.
Sadly, no one is talking about the highlights this morning. McIlroy collapsed on the front nine yesterday. Spieth couldn’t string good holes together. Justin Thomas shot a 71 on Sunday. The superstars didn’t shine. They left the door open for Daniel Berger, Collin Morikawa, and Xander Schauffele, not quite the leader board we expected at the end of the final day. I give Berger credit for the win, but truth be told, Morikawa and Schauffele gave it to him.
Xander lipped out on 17 and missed a difficult birdie putt on 18 to finish fourteen under. Morikawa, who hit a 49-footer on the 14th, inexplicably missed a six-foot winning putt on 18. There were no fans, so you can’t blame it on background noise. Perhaps the moment was too big for him. He is just twenty-three years old. His playoff tee shot wasn’t much better. Berger hit the fairway clean. Collin shanked his ball into the long grass. Collapse complete.
Even the Pros are Only Human
I miss easy putts all the time. While Rory was playing himself out of contention yesterday, I was three-putting my way to a 49 on the front nine at Westminster Woods. I don’t beat myself up for that. It happens. I’m only human, and so are the pros we hold to such a high standard. I’m a golf writer and it’s my job to critique the game. The golf this weekend was fun to watch, but not ready for prime time. I’d describe it as high-level pedestrian, not quite professional yet.