It was a strange week in terms of tournament golf. The first time anyone hit a full shot on the course was the first round on Thursday, but what made it stranger was the fact that when we were due to start we ended up having a fog delay for a few hours. It seemed like we're were destined to never play! However once the fog cleared off it was a beautiful day and the course played great.
Unfortunately my play didn't live up to the day or the course. I struggled again with my strike and there just wasn't any power in it. I felt like I was trying so hard to get any distance from my irons, but when I did try to hit one hard, I got a poor strike. These last two weeks were as bad as I have hit it for a long time - missing both cuts is very disappointing but considering how I played to miss both by one shot wasn't too bad.
The annoying thing about missing by one is that you can always find plenty of shots that would have got you to make the cut. I can look back and as bad as I hit it I can see a number of chip shots that I played poorly, such that if had I played them well then I would have played the final rounds. I practiced on Sunday and by the end of the session I could see a big improvement in the quality of my strike. I'll talk to Pete Cowen during the coming week to see what he thinks and then get to see how it is at the Dunhill Links Championship as I won't be hitting any balls this coming week at the Ryder Cup. I'll be a bit busy running around after all the players in my role as vice captain!
I'm on my way to Hazeltine for the Ryder Cup, I'm looking forward to it. We have a great team and as always everyone is up for the challenge. My role is limited but even still, I'm very excited about the week ahead.
Porsche European Open.
Padraig shoots a second round of three under par and unbelievably misses the cut which fell at four under par. The rain delays made the course very soft and with placing in operation, the scoring was phonominal. He got off to a slow start with a bogie on the par five 3rd but fought back well and reeled off three birdies to start the back nine but failed to convert any chances on the way home. He now meets up with the Ryder Cup team on Monday to fly to the States for next weeks showdown!
Padraig opens his account in Germany with a level par round of 71. Starting on the back nine, he got off to a nice start with a birdie on his second hole but a bad finish to the nine saw him drop three shots in four holes to be out in two over par and struggling. He fought back well with three consecutive birdies but a late dropped shot on the par three 7th hole left him with work to do on Friday. Padraigs playing partner, Bernd Wiesberger, leads at eight under par.
Padraig is in Germany this week for the Porsche European Open as the build up to the Ryder Cup starts in earnest. The event this week has an unusual feel to it as heavy flooding over the weekend means that both the practice round and pro am were cancelled so everyone will be playing the course blind so to speak! Low scoring will still be the order if the day as the wet course will allow the players to fire at the pins. Padraig tees off at 8.10am local time with defending champion, Bernd Wiesberger and Thongchai Jaidee.
It's been an unusual few days here in Germany. The course has been closed for practice as it was flooded last weekend and they have been working hard to be able to get us started on Thursday. On Wednesday we were allowed to walk the course and putt on the greens, but no chipping or any shots could be played. It's been funny to see everyone hanging around the practice ground and player lounge almost looking for something to do.
I travelled from Milan on Monday so the course being closed didn't affect me then, but on Tuesday I would normally have played some holes, especially as I haven't played here before. However the fact that the course is closed meant that you don't have any guilt for not playing. I did quite a bit of practice on Tuesday over the course of the day. On Wednesday I walked the course and hit putts on the greens. As I was doing it I remembered that the last time I wasn't able to play a practice round was the 2008 Open Championship because of injury. Hopefully I get the same result this week!
I didn't hit many balls on Wednesday as I had done a lot on Tuesday but spent a bit of time practicing my chipping and putting. Also I had a clinic and some media commitments to do. By the time I got through all of this I was pretty tired and happy to be heading back to the hotel.
I'm out on Thursday with Bernd Weisberger and Thongchai Jaidee. These guys have played here before so I will be watching them to see how they play the course. After all the practice I have done I am little unsure as to what is going to come out tomorrow. This, on a course that I haven't played before, makes for an interesting week!