Kuchar back to work in Canadian Open
By DOUG FERGUSON
Jul. 27, 2017
This is one time Matt Kuchar could probably use a week off to digest how close he came to winning his first major.
The consolation is Jordan Spieth won the British Open far more than Kuchar lost it. Kuchar had a one-shot lead going to the 14th tee, played the next four holes with two birdies and two pars and found himself two shots behind going to the 18th hole at Royal Birkdale.
And now he's right back to work in the RBC Canadian Open.
Dustin Johnson also is playing, giving the Canadian Open the No. 1 player in the world for the second straight year. Johnson, who didn't play for six weeks in the spring because of his back injury on the eve of the Masters, is schedule to play eight of the next 10 weeks through the Presidents Cup.
Spieth is home in Texas sharing sips out of the claret jug.
Even though golf's oldest championship left town, Britain remains busy with golf. The Senior British Open is at Royal Porthcawl in Wales, the last chance for Bernhard Langer to become the first player since Jack Nicklaus in 1991 to win three senior majors in one year. The LPGA Tour is at Dundonald Links just north of Troon for the Ladies Scottish Open, the final preparation before the Women's British Open next week.
And the European Tour is back in Germany for the Porsche European Open, where Americans like Jimmy Walker, Patrick Reed and Pat Perez highlight the field.
More than just winning his first major, Matt Kuchar is eager to win anything. He is No. 12 in the world and has gone more than three years since he last won at the RBC Heritage . That's on the PGA Tour. Kuchar did manage to sneak out a victory two years ago in the Fiji Open.
Johnson might feel desperate for a victory, too, even though his last one was only four months ago when he captured the Dell Technologies Match Play for his third consecutive victory.
The tournament returns to Glen Abbey, which Jack Nicklaus designed. Nicklaus was a runner-up seven times in the Canadian Open without ever winning. Glen Abbey is best known for Tiger Woods taking that 6-iron out of a bunker and over the water to set up a birdie and a one-shot victory in 2000.
One big story never changes in the Canadian Open — the search for a Canadian winner.
Pat Fletcher in 1954 was the last Canadian to win his national championship. Mike Weir came close in 2004, losing in a playoff to Vijay Singh at Glen Abbey. The field this year includes two PGA Tour winners. Adam Hadwin won the Valspar Championship in March, while Mackenzie Hughes won the RSM Classic at the end of last year.
To celebrate Canada's hockey heritage, the par-3 seventh hole at Glen Abbey has boards along the entire hole to make it feel like a hockey rink.
Television: Thursday-Friday, 3-6 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 1-2:30 p.m. (Golf Channel); 3-6 p.m. (CBS).
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Langer already won two majors for the third time in his career. He won the Regions Tradition and Senior PGA Championship in successive weeks in the spring, but missed out on the U.S. Senior Open and the Senior Players Championship, where Scott McCarron overtook a fading Langer in the final round to win by one shot.
Nicklaus won three straight senior majors in 1991, a year after he won two of them.
This is the second time in four years that Royal Porthcawl has hosted the Senior British Open. The last winner on the course in Wales? Langer, of course.
Television: Thursday-Friday, 7-9:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 9:30 a.m. to noon (Golf Channel).
If the site of the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open — Dundonald Links — sounds familiar, it should. The men's Scottish Open was just there two weeks ago when Rafa Cabrera Bello won in a playoff.
This is the first time the LPGA Tour is co-sanctioning the event with the Ladies European Tour.
The field is strong. Lexi Thompson is the only player from the top four in the world who isn't playing. This is the first of two straight tournaments in Scotland, with the Ricoh Women's British Open next week at Kingsbarns.
Both courses were designed by Kyle Phillips, an American.
Television: Thursday-Friday, 9:30-11:30 a.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 3-6 p.m. (Golf Channel, tape delay).
The Porsche European Open has its history in England, moved over to Ireland for 15 years and now has a home in Germany.
It also has a very American feel.
Pat Perez is playing and is going after dual membership on the PGA Tour and European. He has come a long way from when he so famously said at the HSBC Champions in Shanghai, when no one was in his gallery, that he is "globally unknown."
Walker, the reigning PGA champion, and Reed also stayed behind in Europe to play.
Bernhard Langer is the only German to win the tournament, though his victories were in England and Ireland.
Television: Thursday-Friday, 5-7 a.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday, 2-6 a.m. (tape delay airing Sunday, Golf Channel); Sunday, 2-6 a.m. (tape delay airing Monday, Golf Channel).