Lee Westwood feels Tiger Woods’ pain, having suffered
through a calf injury midway through the 2010 season.
Westwood Empathizes With Tiger
MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE | Lee Westwood knows what it’s like to try to play
injured. The current world No. 2 missed
most of the second half of 2010 with a
calf injury, including having to withdraw
from the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational
and missing the PGA Championship.
So he can empathize with the physical
plight of Tiger Woods, who will miss
the U.S. Open this week due to a knee
injury and an injured Achilles.
“If you don’t feel you’ve dedicated
the right amount of time to your game
to get to a stage where you’re competitive enough to be right up there,
which I’m assuming Tiger turns up at a
U.S. Open thinking he can win it, then
there’s no point in being there unless
you can give it 100 percent,” said Westwood, the defending champion at last
week’s FedEx St. Jude’s Classic, who
tied for 11th this year, closing with a 66.
“I can see why he’s pulled out. I
think it’s a mistake to play injured.
I made that mistake last year at the
Bridgestone and had to pull out after
Believe it or not, David Toms, at age
44, spent some time earlier this year
thinking about retirement from competitive golf. He hadn’t won since The
Sony Open in Hawaii in 2006 and he was
finding more fun away from the course
than on it.
Then, his game sprang suddenly
back to life and he found himself in a
playoff with K.J. Choi that he lost on
the first extra hole with an inexplicable
But to prove, more to himself than
anyone, that he still had what it takes to
win on the PGA Tour, Toms came back
the very next week to win the Crowne
Plaza Invitational at Colonial. He will
return to Atlanta Athletic Club in August
for the PGA Championship, the site of
his lone major championship triumph.
“I think (retirement) enters your mind
any time that you’re away from competition and you’re having fun doing something else,” Toms said at the FedEx St.
Jude Classic. “You know, I’ve got a lot of
hobbies, a lot of passions away from the
golf course. Certainly there are other
things that could occupy my time.
“But once you’re back in it and in
that competition mode when you have
a chance, whether you get it done or
not, it just kind of reinforces that I’m
continuing to do the right thing, that I
need to continue to play golf.”
Robert Garrigus returned to the
scene of the crime last week, having
had last year’s FedEx St. Jude’s Classic
stolen from him by his own poor play on
the 72nd hole.
Garrigus held a three-shot lead
coming into the 18th on Sunday last
year and stumbled his way home with a
triple-bogey seven, which put him into
a playoff with Westwood and Robert
Karlsson, which was won by Westwood.
But in a case of sweet redemption,
Garrigus won the Children’s Miracle
Network Classic, the last official tournament of 2010, protecting a three-shot
lead on the final hole.
After Memphis last year, Garrigus
made the mistake of turning on the
television and got some stark reminders of what he had done.
“You know, that 24 hours after I
flew home and saw my wife and forgot
about it, and obviously watched a lot
of SportsCenter and Golf Channel and
got myself nice and fired up for the
rest of the year, everybody telling me
I choked and that I’ll never win again,”
“That got me pretty pumped up to
go out and do it again, a little fuel to the
fire, which was nice. I think I needed to
see that. Everybody was telling me not
to watch Golf Channel and not to watch
PTI (Pardon The Interruption) and all
that stuff, but I watched it giggling
because I knew I was going to win again
and it was just a matter of time.”
Harrison Frazar has been on the
PGA Tour since 1998 and has four
runner-up finishes in his career, but no
victory. He started Sunday’s final round
at the FedEx St. Jude Classic one shot
behind 54-hole leader Karlsson after
rounds of 65-64 on Friday and Saturday.
“Obviously, I haven’t figured it out
yet,” Frazar said. “I think that you have
to forget about trying to win the golf
tournament. Lot of people ask all the
time, ‘Why haven’t you won? When are
you going to win? What’s going on?’
“We put winning on a pedestal. Guys
that win golf tournaments don’t think
about it until the very end and figure
out what to do.
Tim Clark has been battling a nagging left elbow injury for most of the
year and it caused him to withdraw
from this week’s U.S. Open at Congressional Country Club. Clark has only
played twice since his runner-up finish
at The Sony Open in Hawaii in January. He missed the cut at The Masters
and withdrew after one round at The
Players Championship, where he was
defending champion. l