Harrington putting goes cold at wrong time

 

JUST WHEN he needed to get hot with the putter, it went cold for Pádraig Harrington as the Dubliner was forced to settle for a share of 11th place in the Travelers Championship on the US Tour, where Australian Marc Leishman grabbed his first tour win.

Coming in on the back of a tied-fourth finish in last week’s US Open and a 65 in Saturday’s third round, which put him into a challenging position for a first win on tour since his US PGA triumph in 2008, Harrington finished with a 69 for 270, 10-under-par, which left him four shots adrift of Leishman.

Leishman closed with a sensational 62 for 266, a shot clear of Masters champion Bubba Watson and fellow American Charley Hoffman. England’s Brian Davis, seeking a first win on the US Tour, held a share of the lead going into the final round but finished with a 70 that dropped him down to a share of fourth.

Harrington, who had three birdies and two bogeys in the final round, and finished with five straight pars, had complained of “fatigue” after his third round on Saturday, during which he played 31 holes and he failed to catch fire on the final round, highlighted by a 61 from Hunter Mahan. Leishman’s 62, though, enabled the Aussie to secure a breakthrough win on tour.

“I’ve struggled all week, after coming off a really, really tough testing course last week, where every shot you par save and a lot of good shots into the middle of the green. This week I’m struggling. I just can’t seem to not look at a flag. I can’t aim at the middle of the green. I can’t aim away from it. You’d think after last week aiming at so many middle of the greens I’d be saying this week I can’t go at flags. It’s a strange week. I’m struggling to not go at every single pin out there,” said Harrington of the difference between coming from a US Open set-up to a course with the highest number of birdies on tour.

Harrington continues an intensive stretch in his tournament schedule by moving on to this week’s Irish Open at Portrush.

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