Marc Leishman did not putt well on Friday at Royal St George’s. If certain reports are to be believed, his putter proceeded to break. His putting then improved. Such is golf.
Leishman, the mild-mannered and beloved boy from Warrnambool, is typically decent with the flat stick, ranking 56th in SG/putting heading into the Open Championship. But Leishman and his putter were not tuned to the same frequency through two days in Sandwich, taking a whopping two strokes per GIR on Thursday (the field average was 1.67) and Friday wasn’t yielding better results.
Worse, according to the radio broadcast of the Open, Leishman damaged his Odyssey White Hot OG 1 Wide putter. Whether that was an accident or in anger is unknown, but Leishman had to finish his round by putting with a wedge.
It turned out to be, ahem, a stroke of providence.
The PGA Tour’s Ben Everill reported that Leishman first used the wedge on the par-3 11th, rolling in a 15-footer for par that left Leishman with his “hands to the heavens.” That roll was not an aberration. Leishman carded three birdies in his final seven holes to turn in a three-under 67, eight shots better than his Round 1 performance. All by putting with the leading edge of his wedge.
Unfortunately, at two-over, Leishman missed the weekend action by one shot.
Leishman has a bit of Open history with making the cut on the number, doing just that in 2015 at St Andrews, then firing a 64 and 66 to earn his way into a playoff.