With majors done, now come the PGA playoffs

MGN Online

My, how time flies. Already NFL training camps are opening this week — including the Vikings in Eagan — and baseball season is entering the dog days of summer, as they say.

Native son Shane Lowry dominated the golf field in winning his first career Major. The 148th Open Championship played in Portrush, Northern Ireland on the hallowed grounds of Royal Portrush Golf Club for the first time in 68 years.

The 32-year-old Lowry won it with brilliant golf — 67-67-63-72 — for four days on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. His local knowledge and desire and determination led him to victory. He’s the champion golfer of the year.

In the United States we call the Open Championship the British Open. It’s been played for 148 years. As an amateur in 2009, Lowry won the Irish Open when it was played at Royal Portrush Golf Club.

The Major golf season is over now. Tiger Woods won the Masters, Brooks Koepka won the PGA Championship, Gary Woodland grabbed the United States Open, and Lowry wins the Open Championship in his native land, thrilling a nation.

Woods is the last player to win three Majors in one year, which he did in 2000. He missed the cut in Ireland. He’s still one victory away from tying Sam Snead for most wins all-time with 82 career wins.

Koepka finished in a tie for fourth; he had another sensational year and he’s the world’s number-one player. He finished in a tie for second in the Masters, won the PGA, finished second in the U.S. Open and tied for fourth in the Open.

I’m really happy for Tony Finau. It’s extremely competitive on the PGA Tour, and he’s one of the few minority players on the tour. He played here in Blaine at the 3-M Open two weeks ago and shot 13 under par.

The winner, Matthew Wolff, shot 21 under par to win. Finau had his best tournament of the year in the Open Championship, finishing solo third. “I’m all about family,” said Finau. “I’ve always had family support with my golf dreams and career.

“So to have some family here in Minnesota is really cool for me,” he continued. “There are so many great players on the PGA Tour, you have to bring your A-game if you’re going to compete.”

Finau’s third-place finish in the Open, a Major, sets him up nicely for the upcoming PGA Playoffs and the Fed-Ex Cup. 

About Larry Fitzgerald

Larry Fitzgerald is a longstanding contributing columnist at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder. He can be heard weekday mornings on KMOJ Radio 89.9 FM at 8:25 am, on WDGY-AM 740 Monday and Friday at 9:10 am, and at www.Gamedaygold.com. He also commentates on sports 7-8 pm on Almanac (TPT channel 2). Follow him on Twitter at FitzBeatSr. Larry welcomes reader responses to info@larry-fitzgerald.com, or visit www.Larry-Fitzgerald.com.

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