The PGA Championship: Day 4
August 14 2011
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
JOHNS CREEK, Ga. — With four holes to play, Jason Dufner led by four and appeared to be on his way to winning his first major championship. Then he was swallowed up like so many others before him by the finishing holes at Atlanta Athletic Club.
“Maybe looking back 10, 15 years from now I’ll feel disappointment that I let one get away if I never get another chance,” Dufner said. “But I’ve got a feeling that I’m going to have some chances to win some majors and some other golf tournaments.”
Dufner’s downfall began on the 259-yard par-3 15th, where he was caught between a 3-iron and a 5-wood. Dufner opted for the latter, took a little off and pushed the shot to the right — and into the water.
He made bogey but the real killer was the 16th, where he was in the middle of the fairway on the par-4 and missed the green. Dufner wasn’t able to get up-and-down and made another bogey before making a third in a row with a three-putt on the 17th.
“I should hit that green,” Dufner said of the 16th. “Probably one of the worst iron shots I hit all week.”
Dufner hit one of his best irons of the week on the first hole of the three-hole aggregate playoff, also the 16th, with his approach shot nearly going in the hole. Instead, it rolled past the cup and left him with a slippery, downhill 6-footer for birdie.
As good as the shot was, though, Bradley’s was better and that put a little extra pressure on Dufner, who missed the putt. He never recovered, making bogey on the next hole before making a lengthy par putt on the 18th hole.
Still, despite leaving Atlanta Athletic Club without the Wanamaker Trophy Dufner remained upbeat.
“Coming from where I came from, to be in this position, it’s a dream come true,” Dufner said. "I could have never imagined playing in major championships. I’m not going to let this define my career.”
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