TORONTO // Mike Weir's 20th Canadian Open ended in a disappointing early exit on Friday. For nearly two decades, Weir has been the golfer Canadians had pinned their hopes on to become the first home grown winner of the national championship since Pat Fletcher in 1954 and for most of them the tournament will not be the same without him.
Few of those Canadian Opens ended in more disappointment as Weir slumped to a second round four-over par 74 and a two-round total of six-over 146 to finish ahead of only 11 players. A dejected Weir, who has now missed the cut in three of his last four starts including the British Open, refused to blame a bout of tendonitis that flared up earlier in the week and forced the 2003 Masters champion to wear a brace on his right arm.
"I just played poorly," Weir said. "No excuses I just didn't play well. "If you're driving the ball into the fairway you can score, if you're hitting it where I was you can't." The pressure on the left-hander to deliver on home turf and end a 56-year drought has grown and having just turned 40, the expectations this year seemed to weigh heavier. "When you have great support like that you want to give a better show," said Weir. "I was trying as hard. I'm at point in my game right now where I'm just struggling."
Yesterday, Carl Pettersson of Sweden shot a 10-under par 60 to break the Canadian Open record, missing a 59 when his 30-foot birdie putt from the fringe on 18 grazed the left edge. Pettersson broke the record of 62 set by Leonard Thompson in 1981 at Glen Abbey and matched by five others. * Reuters