It was glamorous, it wasn’t sexy, it wasn’t fun to watch. But, Graeme McDowell hung on to win the 2010 U.S. Open.
The fact of the matter is, McDowell didn’t lose the Open. Because, everyone else who was in position to win did just that. Tiger, Phil, Ernie, Gregory Havret and 54-hole leader Dustin Johnson all managed to play poorly enough to keep McDowell’s name on top of the leaderboard.
Let’s start with Johnson, who will go down next to Greg Norman and Jean Van de Velde for the worst chokejob at a major. His 82 featured a three-hole stretch that saw him make 7-6-5. Then he was on his way to a birdieless round that let him slip to a T-8 at +5 for the championship.
That leads into the big-three that were looking up at McDowell and Johnson this morning. Both Phil and Tiger couldn’t get anything going today and never really threatened a run at the lead. While Ernie Els was looking like he might take a run when he sandwiched a double bogey at 10 with bogies at nine and 11.
Tiger’s putter let him down again and his ball striking was mediocre as he put up six bogies and only two birdies. He finished at +3. Eventually Tiger will come back to win on a Sunday st a major. Whether or not it is anytime soon remains to be seen. He never seemed like he was into his round today even though he seemed very disappointed with his T-4 finish.
Thank heaven that Phil couldn’t get his engines started today. I couldn’t take hearing what a great comeback it would have been if he had won. Phil was unable to give himself any good opportunities today. He shot one over, same as Saturday, and he did it in a very ugly fashion. His short game saved him a few strokes. But, it didn’t give him a chance to make up any ground either.
That leaves us with the Frenchy, Havret. I suppose having McDowell win is sort of a consolation. It would have been a travesty if a frog had come over here and won our championship on the most recognizable American course (short of Augusta). Havret played a pretty boring style, good enough to make a run, that gave him the second-place finish. He had a great showing, but I am very happy he didn’t hoist the trophy.
While I didn’t want McDowell to win, nor did I think he could pull it off, I was happy to see him get the victory. I’m Irish, so it wasn’t all bad to have an (Northern) Irishman win this one. Had it been any other International player, I would not be so even keel. But, McDowell just played his game and got lucky. Johnson choked and fell back to the field and the rest of the pack couldn’t make any birdies. That left McDowell to ease into the winners circle. In terribly boring fashion, I might add.
I love the US Open, it is always held on a course that tests the player’s abilities. Usually you see some very high rounds, like this year. But this final round was so boring I wasn’t even having fun watching anymore. I like to see players make a run late on Sundays. Even if the guy doesn’t end up winning, it is nice to see the leaders have a little fire lit under them by the men giving chase. Hopefully next year at Congressional yields a slightly better result.