Monday, June 3

Is Matt Kuchar on Verge of Major Breakthrough?

Matt Kuchar won for the second time this season. (Keith Allison)
WHILE TIGER WOODS, RORY MCILROY AND OTHERS were struggling mightily at Muirfield Village Golf Club, lanky Matt Kuchar kept putting his golf ball in the fairway and on the green with that flat swing of his en route to a two-stroke victory over Kevin Chappell in The Memorial Tournament. Kuchar shot rounds of 68, 70, 70 and 68 for a 12-under total of 276.

Kuchar, it appears, isn't great at anything. But he's good to very good at everything, from the driver to the putter. He won in extremely tough conditions at Jack's place (that would be Jack Nicklaus). Is he also ready to endure the tough conditions required to win a U.S. Open?

Maybe so. Kuchar has a steady game and an easygoing attitude. Nothing seems to bother himexcept that itchy beard he sported in Ohio.

Kuchar's best U.S. Open finish is a tie for sixth in 2010. In his last two starts he has tied for 14th and 27th.

Karen Crouse of the New York Times reported:
Not even the wind, which gusted to 32 miles an hour Saturday and reached 20 m.p.h. Sunday, could wipe the smile from Kuchar’s face. 
"There are a couple of things I thought were missing from my pedigree," Kuchar said. "A major championship is on the list and a multiple-win season was on the list." He added, "Having a multiple-win season, it's nice to be able to check that one off the list." 
In two weeks, Kuchar will tackle the other item on his list when the Merion Golf Club, outside Philadelphia, hosts the United States Open. "I certainly feel like I'm ready to show up and play some really good golf," he said.
As Crouse also reported, before Kuchar gets to Merion he'll stop off at his home in Sea Island, Georgia, and shave the stubble off his smiling face.

"It is itchy and scratchy and doesn't feel great," he commented after winning The Memorial.

So, at Merion, the face of the 34-year-old tour veteran will again be as smooth as his golf swing. If enough other things are smooth for Kuchar that week near Philly, he might just grip the U.S. Open trophy on Father's Day.

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