Another solid week for Padraig on the Seniors tour as he finishes second again for the second week in a row. Trailing the overnight leader by six shots, he needed to get off to a quick start and he duly obliged with an opening birdie, birdie salvo but ground to an agonising halt at the par three 4th hole where he had to take a penalty drop and ran up a double bogie five. He dropped another shot at the next hole, a par five where he again had to take a penalty drop but finished the front nine strongly with two closing birdies to be out in one under par. Four more birdies followed to run up an amazing eight birdies for the day but too many mistakes cost him any chance of catching the leader, Steve Stricker, who won by six shots. Very postive play from Padrig over the last couple of weeks heading into this weeks PGA Championship!
The story of Padraigs third round could be summed up with, slow start, fast finish. He dropped two early shots but picked up a birdie at the par four 8th hole to be out in one over par and losing ground to the field. He picked up another shot at the par four 13th which is guarded by water when he rolled in a 15 foot putt but kept the best till last as he holed a bomb on the par five 18th to record the only eagle of the day. He is in tied 4th place at eleven under par, seventeen under leads.
Padraig chases his first Senior Major win as he adds a very commendable six under par 66 to finish in tied 2nd place at nine under par and only two shots behind the leader heading into the weekend. He again got off to a nice start with an early birdie on the par five 2nd hole but gave it straight back at the third hole where he found rough off the tee. It was to be his only blemish of the day as he hit back strongly to pick up two more shots going out to turn in 34 shots. He parred the next three holes before a grandstand finish saw him birdie three of his last five holes. His birdie on the par three 17th came via a class tee shot to a tight pin and the 18th was a bunker shot hit stone dead. He will tee it up Saturday, out last, with his Ryder Cup nemesis, Steve Stricker.
Padraig opens his account at his first senior Major with a very pleasing round of three under par 69. Starting on the back nine, he got off to the perfect start with an opening birdie and then followed that with another on the par four 12th hole. He drained a bomb on the short par three 14th hole to get to three under after five holes but one bad shot on the par four 16th cost him a two shot penalty and he did well to par the hole with his second ball. He finished the nine in sytle with a chip and putt four on the tough par five 18th hole which was playing into the wind. He added one more birdie on the front side with eight pars also added to sign for a 69. He is in tied 12th place going into Fridays second round, seven under par leads the field!
Padraig plays this week on the Champions Tour at Greystone G&CG for his first Seniors Major, the Regions Traditions. Alex Cejka is your defending champion.
Tee Times – Padraig plays with Miguel Angel Jimenez and Ernie Els at 11.35am Thursday and 10.18am Friday!