Columnist image
Bob Weeks

TSN Senior Reporter

|Archive

PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND – Adam Hadwin may not have posted the scores he wanted, but he’s leaving here feeling positive about his game as he gets set for the FedEx Cup playoffs.

The Canadian finished up his Open run with a two-over round on Sunday that left him at four over for the week. It was a familiar story over Royal Portrush for Hadwin who played well early in his round but couldn’t carry it through the end.

“I got off to a good start, played some terrible golf in the middle and kind of scrambled my way through to the finish,” he summed up. “There are some positives to take away from this week but certainly I’m a little disappointed in how I performed.”

For the week, Hadwin played the front nine in four under and the back in eight over, although statistically, the back side played almost a shot easier. On Sunday, he had two birdies and an eagle in the first seven holes but frittered them away with a double and two bogeys shortly after making the turn.

“I’ve been playing some good golf,” he stated. “I did a lot of good things this week. Unfortunately I counter-acted that with a lot of bad things. So I’ll take the positives out of this week and just keep grinding it out.”

“I really enjoyed my time over here,” he added. “I really enjoyed this week, I just wish the golf had been a little better.”

Playing in just his third Open, Hadwin is genuinely learning to love links golf. He talked about the creativity needed for many shots, the mindset required to battle the elements, and the discipline to stay patient when the breaks don’t go your way.

He’s also learning to embrace the culture and take the opportunity to explore. He and his wife Jessica played tourist when he wasn’t golfing, visiting several of the local sites.

“We don’t often get to come to parts of the world like this,” said the 30-year-old. “I feel like in the States we play the same tournaments year after year, we see the same things so when we do get a chance to come to different parts of the world you’ve got to see a few things. I mean I’m not sure when I’m going to be back in Northern Ireland.”

Hadwin will head home for a week off during which he’ll refresh and recalibrate his golf game. After a week of hitting wind-cheating irons, bump-and-runs, and putting on slower-than-usual greens, it will take some time on the range to get his game back on North American standards.

Hadwin will next appear on stage at the Wyndham Championship before setting off for the FedEx Cup playoffs. He has high expectations for a strong finish to the year.

“I’ve been playing some good golf,” he stated. “I’ve just got to keep doing what I’m doing, just keep trying to dig it out of the dirt, keep working on the basics.”

The season has been a much more consistent one than a year earlier for Hadwin. He’s been in the hunt to win tournaments, such as the RBC Canadian Open where he ended up tied for sixth, and has five top-10 finishes in 20 starts.

At this time last year, Hadwin was 55th in the world ranking, dropped to as low as 79th and has climbed back to 63rd.

His hard work in the last six months is all aimed at trying to get back to his stellar campaign two years ago when he notched his first victory at the Desert Classic.

“It’s always tough coming off a year like I had in 2017, to keep the pedal down and keep going,” he said. “I didn’t do a good job of that last year. I had a good run in the playoffs, which made the year seem a lot better. I’m up closer to 40th in the FedEx right now so I’m a lot higher going into the playoffs than I was last year. I’m right there if I can keep some of this momentum – a couple of good finishes in the first few events and I’ll be in the Tour Championship.”