If there was ever a golfer that defined the thought in golf that one minute you have it and the next you don't, it's David Duval. He was the best in the world for a while, until he forgot how to play.
He popped back into our lives at the Deutsche Bank Open in 2005 with a 13th place finish, but that was short lived. In the fourth round of the Sony Open back in 2006, Duval closed with a 63 and people thought that might be the year of his return. It turned out to only be hopeful thinking. Then came Bethpage Black in '09, when Duval was there. It wasn't as much an announcement as a reckoning, when the first round was completed in 67 shots and the next two were 70s. The U.S. Open is supposed to be tough, but Duval was playing well and looking sharp and unlike most comeback stories, this one seemed comfortable. People thought he might win.
He didn't, thanks to a nasty lip-out on the 17th and a failed birdie attempt at 18. Now, with a second place finish at Pebble Beach, the public might actually be allowed to swallow all the Duval comeback stories. He didn't do anything wrong this week. He made six birdies on Sunday, and carded the lowest round of anyone in the top-10.
His birdie on 17 gave him a chance, and if Duval makes four on 18 we all might be writing completely different headlines, but when the golf world needed a positive story (just one positive story!), Double-D stepped up. Can he keep it going, with a questionable back and a history of failing? Nobody knows for sure. Does the public want it? Absolutely. Keep it up, David. I never thought I'd be this excited for wraparound sunglasses to come back in style.