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Monday, August 19, 2013

The Limerick Summary: 2013 Wyndham Championship

Winner: Patrick Reed

Around the wider world of golf: The European women got their first-ever win on American soil at the Solheim Cup, beating the US team 18-10; Matt Fitzpatrick won the US Amateur 4&3 over Oliver Goss, becoming only the 2nd British winner ever; Bart Bryant won the Dick's Sporting Goods Open on the Champions Tour, becoming that tour's 1000th winner; and Peter Malnati won the News Sentinel Open on the Web.com Tour.

Reed and caddy/wife lift trophy

It seemed a bit weird, actually. The Wyndham Championship, which used to be called the Greater Greensboro Open (aka "the GGO"), has always been a big deal for me because it's our local tournament. (Well, it's less than 40 minutes away from where I live. That's close enough!) But Sunday was taken up with the Solheim Cup and the US team's desperate attempt to come back from 5 points down. (SPOILER ALERT: In case you didn't hear, they failed.)

But modern technology is a wonderful thing. Because of weather problems in the area, the final round was played early and the broadcast was tape-delayed. By following the tournament on the Net, I was able to find out what happened and change channels in time to see the playoff.

And what a playoff it was! After Jordan Spieth came back from a bogey early in the round to tie Patrick "Mr. Monday" Reed, the two-hole playoff demonstrated why these two players have caught the imagination of golf fans. Spieth scrambled from a horrible drive on the first hole, getting up and down from the fairway after he drained a 26-footer for par. Then Reed topped him, hitting a nearly impossible recovery after his bad drive on the second hole and dropping it to a mere 7 feet from the hole... and draining it, of course.

We needn't cry for Spieth -- he's 8th in the FedExCup rankings, probably a shoe-in for Rookie of the Year, and I find it hard to believe Fred Couples won't make him a Captain's Pick for the Presidents Cup. But things have changed for Reed now, who gets into the Masters AND moves up to 22nd in the FedExCup rankings, among other things. That's a huge change from all those Monday qualifiers he had to win last year just to get a chance at a tournament.

The Wyndham is a place of history -- the place where Sam Snead won 8 times, which was a big deal before Tiger came along. And lately it's become famous for launching (or relaunching) a number of careers. This week it sends Patrick Reed and his caddy/wife Justine on their way to a hopefully long and successful PGA Tour career.

In the meantime, Patrick Reed gets his very own Limerick Summary -- no Monday qualifying required:
Last year he was called “Mr. Monday.”
Every Monday he played, hoping someday
He could bypass that grind.
After so many times
Winning those spots, he’s now “Mr. Sunday.”
The photo came from the Wyndham's homepage at PGATOUR.com.

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