Playing in cold and windy conditions for much of the day, only 23 players were able to shoot under par at the RBC Heritage on Thursday, with Chad Campbell, Colt Knost, and Vaughn Taylor tied for the lead at four under par overall.
Chad Campbell hasn't won on the PGA Tour since 2007 (Viking Classic), which is surprising because he has been one of the better iron players on the PGA Tour for the past decade or so. This season, however, he has played very poorly to this point, only making four cuts in nine starts with the best finish being a T26 at the Mayakoba Golf Classic. He was able to turn the clock back at the first round of the RBC Heritage, with six birdies and two bogeys on the scorecard; Campbell got off to a hot start with four birdies on his first seven holes and continued to play solid golf after that. If Chad wants to have any sort of chance of winning this week's event he will have to stay strong with the putter, as he ranks 178th on Tour in total putting this year and has really been his primary weakness.
What happened to Luke Donald? Donald was the highest ranked player at this event and had a strong history at the RBC Heritage as well, finishing runner up last year. On Thursday Luke shot a four over par 75, which currently puts him two shots out of the projected cut line at +2. It was not only one of the worst putting performances that I have seen from him this year, but also one of the poorest ball striking days as well; it was as if Donald was continuing his play from the Masters a week ago. Harbour Links is the kind of course where one has to put in the fairway a lot in order to score low, and Luke just was not able to do that on Thursday. He may have a chance to make the cut, but his chances of winning this week are very slim.
Ryan Kekoufski is a scratch golfer who has both played and watched the sport for well over a decade. He covers sports for the Yahoo! Contributor Network, and currently resides in Virginia.
- Sports & Recreation
- Chad Campbell
- PGA Tour
- Luke Donald