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Monday, April 30, 2012

The Limerick Summary: 2012 Zurich Classic

Winner: Jason Dufner

Around the wider world of golf: Bernd Wiesberger got his first ET win at the Ballantine's Championship (that also counts on the Asian Tour and the KPGA); Stacy Lewis got her 2nd official win at the Mobile Bay LPGA Classic (she did win the 2007 LPGA NW Arkansas Championship as an amateur, but it was rain-shortened to 18 holes and therefore isn't counted as an "official" win); Luke List won the South Georgia Classic on the Nationwide Tour; and Chie Arimura won the CyberAgent Ladies on the JLPGA (the Constructivist has the details).

Dufner finally breaks through

The culture of New Orleans has long been associated with voodoo -- witness the James Bond movie Live and Let Die, for example -- and Anne Rice's vampire novels did a lot to make the Big Easy much more attractive to the living dead than Transylvania ever was. So perhaps it's an appropriate place for the best golfers in the world to confront their demons.

The psychological kind, not the supernatural ones.

And if ever two golfers were typecast to star in such a duel, Ernie Els and Jason Dufner would be the ones. Each has developed a bit of a reputation for getting right to the cusp of victory, only to have it slip tantalizingly through their fingers. And you could argue that both where plagued by the same demon -- a tall, skinny zombie that seems blind to the proper line a golf ball should follow once it reaches the green.

Alas, the two were destined to meet on Sunday afternoon in sudden death. (Somehow that seems eerily appropriate for men plagued by zombie golf equipment.) And in the end it was putting that finally ended Jason Dufner's long wait for his first Tour win.

I've already written about my admiration for Dufner's determination, which has finally been rewarded. (Although, as agonizing as that wait may have been, the $8mil+ he pocketed in the meantime should have been some small compensation!) But I also hold that same admiration for Ernie Els, who has refused to give in to despair despite a long struggle with that scrawny blind demon. It appears that he may be winning that battle and will soon re-enter the winner's circle himself.

In the meantime Dufner, like Bond in the afore-mentioned movie, will be riding into the sunset with his lady. Jason and his fiance Amanda are to be married this coming weekend. I just hope they don't plan to leave by train as Bond did... it's better if they don't give Baron Samedi an opportunity to tag along!

In the meantime, this week's Limerick Summary salutes the newest Tour winner, who successfully triumphed over his demon without voodoo dolls or other non-golf paraphernalia of any kind:
Each tournament served as a toughener
While vict'ry evaded J. Dufner.
He never berated
Himself while he waited;
His bank account won. He kept stuffin' her!
The photo came from the front page of PGATOUR.com.

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