Padraig Harrington`s British Open win may be a sign of the times for US golfers on the PGA Tour
Released on = July 25, 2007, 12:22 pm
Press Release Author = GolfPublisher Syndications
Industry = Media
Press Release Summary = Save for Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, U.S. golfers have stiff European competition. Columns at WorldGolf.com
Press Release Body = By William K. Wolfrum, Staff Writer, Golf Publisher Syndications
Watching the wild finish to the 2007 British Open, a couple of things came to mind. For one, Padraig Harrington\'s thrilling victory means we don\'t have to hear Paul Lawrie\'s name before every major as the last European golfer to win one.
Another thing was this: Tiger Woods may have ruined the rest of the world when it comes to playing pressure golf. Face it, without taking one ounce of credit away from Harrington - as deserving a champion as is out there - it wasn\'t like he shook off the pressure to grab his slice of glory. Basically, he just choked slightly less than Sergio Garcia and Andres Romero.
If ever there was a show of how players are unable to close the deal, it was on hole No. 72. Harrington, needing a par to shut Garcia out, twice went into the water to double-bogey. Garcia, needing a par for his first career major, played Carnoustie\'s famed No. 18 so timidly you almost felt he was trying to two-putt from 10 feet to guarantee a tie.
It was unimpressive to say the least. But, for Europeans, at least these golfers were there. Because while Stewart Cink, Hunter Mahan and Steve Stricker were all in the top 10, none was a true threat to win. Woods finished a respectable 12th - respectable for someone not named Tiger, perhaps - and was never remotely in position to win.
Which brings us to Carnoustie\'s final lesson: Outside of Tiger and possibly Phil Mickelson (though his play has been hideous of late), U.S. golfers may struggle even more now in getting to the winner\'s circle at the PGA Tour\'s biggest events.
It\'s very possible Woods is in one of his regenerating stages - like 2003-04 - this time adjusting to fatherhood and a new life. He could very well re-emerge as the most dominant golfer in the game, and sooner rather than later.
In reality, however, it is the Europeans that appear to be ready to take the game by the throat and dominate upcoming majors now that Harrington finally kicked the door down.
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July 25, 2007 Any opinions expressed above are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of the management.