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Shane Bacon

Irish luck continues, this time for Padraig Harrington

Shane Bacon
Devil Ball Golf

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Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell, Padraig Harrington.

If I gave you those three names two years ago, and asked you which one would be winless in 2010, Padraig would be the last one picked.

It's true that the last two years for Harrington have been strange, with no victories on the PGA or European tours, and more collapses than a game of Jenga. Padraig has continually played himself into tournaments, especially at the end of 2009, but when the pressure cooked in the final round, Harrington disappeared.

It's a strange thing to say about a guy who won three major championships in six tries, but Padraig has almost forgot how to close out events. As always, he's looking to change that, and this week's Travelers Championship might be a great time to buck that trend.

An opening six-under 64 had Paddy tied with Matthew Goggin, Justin Rose and Charlie Wi for the lead at TPC River Highlands. It is the lowest round Harrington has had in a first round since last August, and sets him up as the name to beat amongst the field.

For Paddy, staging a good week is huge, mainly because he doesn't want to fall too far behind the two names at the start of this post. Rory and Graeme might be doing this now, but Harrington is still the Irishman to beat.

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