DeLaet’s Pre-Olympic Woes – Notes From Chris Stevenson

Graham DeLaet was in the mix late at the Sanderson Farms Championship (File Photo: Bernard Brault, Golf Canada)
Graham DeLaet had his struggles at Glen Abbey (Photo: Bernard Brault, Golf Canada)
Graham DeLaet had his struggles at Glen Abbey (Photo: Bernard Brault, Golf Canada)w/

w/ Chris Stevenson, The Rideau View Golf Insider

The performance of 21-year-old Canadian amateur Jared du Toit – shooting under par while playing in the final group on a Sunday in his first PGA TOUR event and finishing T9 – justifiably got most of the attention at the RBC Canadian Open from The Great White North standpoint.

It’s an unlikely story, a feel-good story.

It made up for the disappointing performances of Canada’s Olympians, Graham DeLaet and David Hearn, who both missed the cut. With the Olympic golf tournament a couple of weeks away, DeLaet is still showing signs of the “chipping yips” which caused him to withdraw from the Memorial tournament in May.

He skulled one across the green on the ninth hole, forcing a caddie to lift his foot to avoid the scalded ball. There was another incident on the 16th hole when DeLaet went bunker to bunker leading to another double bogey.

Golf is a relentlessly cruel game. DeLaet is one of the best ball strikers in the game. Tee to to green, he’s tough to beat.

Around the greens has been the issue. He ranks in the 160s in most of the putting stats (169th in overall putting average; 168th in putts per round). He’s 191st in putting from three feet. He ranks 122nd in average distance of putts made per round at just less than 71 feet.

He’s 177th in scrambling.

You can’t help but feel for DeLaet and what he’s going through right now and here’s hoping his work on his short game progresses in time for the Olympic showcase.

• • •

Perhaps DeLaet could take something away from the words of RBC Canadian Open champ Jhonattan Vegas. He’s had his own ups and downs. He won in 2011, but finished 153rd on the FedEx Cup points list last year.

In the opposite field event last week, he had a 60 in the second round and had a six-shot lead. He lost by three. Sunday, he started five shots back and won.

“That’s the fortunate breaks that sometimes you need to be a champion on the PGA TOUR,” Vegas said. “It’s a great feeling. I mean, last week, I had a six-shot lead going into the weekend and lost by three. I was five back starting today and won by one. It’s a crazy sport. You’ve just got to keep your head down and play hard.”

• • •

It didn’t take The Hudson’s Bay Company long to capitalize on du Toit’s prominence over the weekend.

He’s a member of Golf Canada’s national team which HBC outfits (including the Olympic gear).

“Wear what Jared du Toit wears,” said the web-based come on at thebay.com.

• • •

Speaking of going low, former Oakland A’s and St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Mark Mulder successfully defended his American Century Celebrity Championship, coming from behind. He took control with a 31 on his opening nine which included four straight birdies starting the sixth hole.

He beat out tennis player Mardy Fish and actor Jack Wagner in the Stableford competition.

According to his Twitter feed, Mulder celebrated with a Fatburger.

Former NHLers Jeremy Roenick and Mike Modano finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

San Jose Sharks forward Joe Pavelski finished 10th.

Follow me on Twitter: @CJ_Stevenson

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This article appears courtesy of Rideau View Golf Club, where Chris Stevenson is a regular contributor to their social media – worth following!

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