Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Most Players Make Do with the Art of Re-Start

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Most Players Make Do with the Art of Re-Start

Article excerpt

Byline: Garry Smits, Times-Union sports writer

Call it the art of the re-start. In a sport played outdoors, it's unavoidable and PGA Tour players are used to it.

The Florida Swing is especially susceptible because of its unstable March weather. At some point in the last three tournaments, players who were unable to complete rounds suspended because of weather or darkness have been required to return to the course before dawn the next day to begin preparing for the re-start.

It happened yesterday for the second time this week during The Players Championship: 27 players were unable to finish their second round Friday night. The day before, 68 players were unable to finish their first rounds.

"If you play the usual 25-to-30 events a year, it's going to happen about a fourth of the time," said Tim Herron, who had to play three holes yesterday to finish his second round. "You just live with it."

Few players enjoy playing deep into the afternoon one day, and then returning in the pre-dawn hours the next day to finish. If they've made the cut, they frequently have several hours of down time before starting the next round. If the situation happens in the first round, they may have as little as 20 minutes between the end of that round and the start of their second.

However, there can be one crucial edge: when a round is suspended by weather, chances are the players on the course at that time have been competing in the high winds that often precede a front. When they come back the next morning, conditions are often much calmer.

"Happens all the time," said Jeff Maggert, who finished the last five holes of his second round. "I'm not sure anyone really enjoys it, but sometimes it works to your advantage. If it was very windy the day before, you can come the next day and get conditions like we had this morning -- absolutely calm."

Players say they don't deviate much from their usual pre-round practice routine if they have only a few holes left. If they have only one, two or three holes remaining, they may concentrate on the shots they anticipate on those holes. …

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