Graeme McDowell made a stunning comeback for the third day in a row Friday, beating Hunter Mahan in 21 holes to reach the World Golf Championships match play quarter-finals.
McDowell, the 2010 US Open champion from Northern Ireland, won the 17th and 18th holes to square the match, sank a 19-foot par putt on the 20th hole and then sank a 14-foot birdie putt on the last hole to advance.“I genuinely thought I was done this time. I didn’t think there was any way back,” McDowell said. “Nine lives have been used up and then some.”
McDowell has played 58 holes and never led in any match until the final hole.
“I’m not embarrassed, but I just feel like I’m robbing these guys,” he said.
Mahan, the 2012 Match Play winner and 2013 runner-up, staged a rematch of his epic 2010 Ryder Cup singles showdown with McDowell, who beat the American three and one at Celtic Manor to clinch the trophy for Europe. South African Ernie Els hit a wedge shot two feet from the cup at the 18th and made the putt to defeat 2013 PGA Championship winner Jason Dufner one up and book a last-eight match against rising US star Jordan Spieth, a two and one winner over countryman Matt Kuchar.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 23rd, 2014.
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