I am not one to say that Adam Scott’s weak play over the last few holes was one of the biggest collapses in the history of golf because there are so many. Palmer lost 7 shots to Billy Casper in 1966, or Greg Norman’s 6 shot lead at the 1996 Masters, and even Nicklaus, Tom Watson, etc. have had a few similar meltdowns when coming down the stretch. But it is interesting again, that the winner came from behind and another player in control could not protect the lead.
Adam Scott was in control of this tournament from about the 9th hole on Saturday until the 71st hole of the tournament on Sunday afternoon. But part of the loss of control had to do with the 32 that Ernie Els shot on the back nine – 4 under par when most pros were shooting in the mid-70’s for the day. And Ernie said it himself –he played differently because he was chasing. He putted more aggressively because he was behind – arguably, he was much more free with his stroke. And two weeks ago, I wrote about the issues players are having when in the lead. Snedeker won earlier when Kyle Stanley folded on the last hole; Webb Simpson came from back in the pack to win the US Open; and Ted Potter won a playoff to capture the Greenbrier as several players fell back, and he played aggressively over the last few holes – it goes on and on.
Until we see a player who can play with the lead and win, we will not have a dominant pro golfer. Tiger is the only one who has been able to do it in the last 15 years. We have not seen anyone even do it for a year or so. Even or most experienced players like a Furyk and even Ernie Els have blown leads this year. Webb Simpson blew a nice lead in Charlotte. It’s the “kiss of death” now to have the lead going into the back nine…..Will we see anyone figure this out? When they do, then we will see our next potential dominant player!
And, who says nice guys don’t finish first? Ernie Els is according to everyone who comes in contact with him, a truly good guy, and great champion!! Way to go Ernie!