Despite Harrington’s pain barrier, Padraig Harrington managed to record what is his best finish in the European Tour in two years when he came out ninth-place in the ASI Scottish Open.
Harrington had neck pain for some time now, teeing-off and still managed to get the best round of his week with a four-under 67 that featured the 16th hole on the Renaissance course, east of Edinburgh. This tournament was where England’s Aaron Rai came out as the latest champion after defeating Tommy Fleetwood for the Rolex Series title.
At the par-four of the 18th, Rai claimed the victory in a sudden-death decider where Tommy Fleetwood missed by a split three feet away. On the other side of the fence, Harrington had participated in only eight events this year. He debuted on five at the European Tour alongside three in the PGA TOUR during the year. It was a memorable one for him when he produced a 17th during the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship two years ago.
Harrington, who happens to be Europe’s Ryder Cup captain, doggedly fought his way during the rounds with a one-under-par cut to his advantage. Despite the strong winds and driving rain on Saturday, Europe’s Ryder Cup captain emerged as one of the 17 players among the entire 66 to break par after shooting a 69.
During the game on the green, it was not a jolly ride for the 49-year-old because of Harrington’s pain barrier. However he continued to gain momentum and birded three and four, dropping a shot at the eight. Harrington went against the odd when he superbly birded the 1st for the third day running.
“I was happy with the round,” said Harrington. “I tweaked my neck before I went out and I struggled to hit the golf ball all day.”
Due to the discomfort, he had challenges with his alignment and mentioned that he couldn’t look up correctly, but he managed to hang in there on every round on the golf course.
“When I was standing over the ball, I had to move my whole body rather than just my head so it freaked me out big time. But I stuck in there and managed my way around the golf course and I am really happy that I putted well because that has been pretty weak for a good few years.”
He made a cool $127,000 for his effort in his second appearance within six months on the TOUR despite Harrington’s pain barrier.
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