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Monday, February 22, 2016

The Limerick Summary: 2016 Northern Trust Open

Winner: Bubba Watson

Around the wider world of golf: Haru Nomura won the ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open on the LPGA/LET; Marcus Fraser won the Maybank Championship Malaysia on the ET/Asian Tour; and Erynne Lee won the IOA Championship on the Symetra Tour.

Bubba Watson with Northern Trust Open trophy

Bubba Watson came into this week with eight wins and a kidney stone, among other things. Since he was in Hollywood, he and son Caleb hung out with Justin Bieber, he did a guest shot on the TV show "Girl Meets World", and went to a Clippers basketball game.

Oh yeah, and he played some golf. He won the tournament, in fact. But it didn't look like normal Bubba golf to me.

Bubba is usually a pretty accurate driver. But he only hit half his fairways this week, and in Friday's round he only hit two. Yet somehow he managed to hit nearly 71% of his GIR. And even though his misses looked to be in some pretty bad places -- at least they looked bad to me -- he scrambled really well.

But he putted well. He made a whole lot of putts. And when Bubba putts well, he usually scores well -- which he did this week.

It didn't hurt that everybody else struggled with the softer greens at Riviera. (How often do we say that?) Most of the big names made a charge but just couldn't keep up the pace. For example, Rory McIlroy eagled the first hole but, after that, he had a Sunday he'll be eager to forget. Adam Scott had a rough stretch in the middle of his round; he'll leave Riviera feeling pretty good about his game, especially his putting with the short putter, but he did have a couple of bad holes. And Jason Kokrak, trying to win his first Tour event, came down with a case of brain freeze coming down the stretch after having the tournament under control.

In the end Bubba did what he often does. He came up with crucial shots in crunch time, going -2 on the last three holes to seal the deal.

Bubba's supposed to move to #4 in the OWGR with this win, and I believe he is now second only to Rory for total wins since 2010. And since I started this blog in 2009, I guess this win puts him second only to Rory for Limerick Summaries as well.
First it’s right, then it’s left, then it’s straight,
Then it’s high, then it’s low. Was it fate?
Bubba’s ball zipped around
Riviera and found
One more win he could add to his eight.
The photo came from this page at espn.go.com.

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