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Presidents Cup: Grounded Mike Weir out of the loop

Wed, 16 Nov 2011 13:06:29

by Dave Perkins

Mike Weir never thought of himself as the old-firehorse type, but he hears the bell of the Presidents Cup and he's pawing to get out of his stall.

Weir is home in Utah, early on the long road back from complicated elbow-tendon surgery performed by Dr. James Andrews in August. He can clip 20 balls off a tee with a 7-iron every two days, but that's the limit so far. If his rehab goes well, he hopes he might return in February, or by the PGA Tour's Florida swing.

"Now's the time for patience," the lefthander said this week. "Andrews said it would be four to six months before I could hit balls. I won't even try to hit a ball off the ground for at least two more weeks."

So he's grounded. After being a strong part of the past five International teams, albeit with four losses and a tie, he's taking the PC this week like the rest of us, over the television. Difference is, he knows what he's missing.

"It will be an interesting week for me to sit and watch this," he said. "It certainly fuels the fire to make me want to get out there and practice. This was always a big thing in my radar and I loved being part of it. But I've had no contact with any of the guys. I'm completely out of the loop. It feels strange."

It should. In compiling a 13-9-2 record, best of any non-U.S. player over the span, Weir held up his end of an event he loves. Think of South Africa in 2003, when he gifted his teammates with personalized Canada hockey jerseys, or that great day at Royal Montreal in '07 when he beat Tiger Woods 1-up in a match he still calls "the best experience I ever had in 18 holes of golf. Winning the Masters was something, but for one day, there was never anything more electric than that for me.

"My record's been good and I'm proud of that, but it's a team game. It didn't matter how well you did individually; when you got into that team room on Sunday night, it didn't feel good. So, yeah, I feel I have some unfinished business" (with the PC).

He's anxious to be a captain one day and if Greg Norman had called this time to ask him to help out as an assistant, he'd have been there in a flash.

"I remember that golf course (Royal Melbourne) from playing over there in the early 90s," said the only Canadian ever to get close to the PC. "I'd have been happy to help any way I could. I'd love to be part of it again. Maybe next time."

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