January 20, 2023
Luke Donald was rolling. Only a day earlier, actually, this 12 months’s European Ryder Cup captain was being requested whether or not he would choose himself to play within the biannual occasion.
“1975 I believe the final time that occurred,” Donald mentioned. “No, we’re a great distance from that.”
On the previous level, he was barely off.: The final taking part in captain for both the People or the Europeans was Arnold Palmer for the U.S. in 1963. (Europe has by no means had one, although Dai Rees performed and captained for Workforce Nice Britain in 1961.) After which there’s the latter level, and although one gap or shot doesn’t make a participant, his sequence throughout Friday’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship second spherical wasn’t turning into.
“Properly, I don’t assume I’ve ever seen Luke Donald do something like that in my life,” a Golf Channel analyst mentioned.
Presumably not, although he was in a tricky spot on the 204-yard, par-5 seventeenth at Yas Hyperlinks Abu Dhabi, albeit it was of his personal doing. His tee shot was some 30 yards in need of the flag, and his ball settled right into a small patch of fairway forward of the upslope of the inexperienced.
Ought to he chip? Ought to he putt? Donald is an skilled right here, although gauging a 90-foot putt via undulations and two forms of grass is demanding.
“In order that’s going to be very tough,” an analyst mentioned on the printed. “However we all know how good he’s on these photographs.”
“Suppose he may need to chip that one,” one other analyst mentioned.
“Yeah, positively going to should chip it,” one other analyst mentioned. “It’s a miscue.”
And his ball rolled previous the outlet.
And off the inexperienced.
And right into a again greenside bunker. He was now 36 toes away.
Luke Donald replaces Henrik Stenson as Ryder Cup captain after LIV defection
“Oh pricey. No, certainly not,” one analyst mentioned on the printed.
“Properly, that was extraordinary from Luke Donald,” one other analyst mentioned. “Excellent chipping, and he should not have fancied it as a result of that’s a catastrophe.”
“He’s had his up-and-down occasions, however that was exceptional, wasn’t it?” one other analyst mentioned. “Utterly misjudged with the putter.”
From there, Donald didn’t get out of the bunker together with his third shot, escaped together with his fourth and two-putted for a triple-bogey six. He had began the outlet tied for third and two strokes behind two leaders Francesco Molinari and Guido Migliozzi, and Donald walked to 18 5 again of the highest and tied for twenty second.
On the closing gap, he parred, and he signed for a three-over 75, someday after a 64.
“Could possibly be worse — what a profession he’s had,” an announcer mentioned on the printed as Donald performed the 18th. “He actually has been sensational.”
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Nick Piastowski is a Senior Editor at Golf.com and Golf Journal. In his position, he’s liable for modifying, writing and creating tales throughout the golf area. And when he’s not writing about methods to hit the golf ball farther and straighter, the Milwaukee native might be taking part in the sport, hitting the ball left, proper and brief, and ingesting a chilly beer to clean away his rating. You’ll be able to attain out to him about any of those matters — his tales, his recreation or his beers — at [email protected].