September 11, 2004

"It'll be similar to playing with Tiger last year."

The NYT quotes my nephew, Cliff Kresge, who will be paired with Mike Weir for the final round of the Bell Canadian Open tomorrow. Weir, in the lead by three strokes, is a good bet to win, and this is very exciting for Canadians, who have not in 50 years seen a fellow countryman win their big tournament.
New world number one Vijay Singh of Fiji, American Cliff Kresge and Jesper Parnevik of Sweden shared second place behind Weir, who will have a boisterous home crowd behind him in the final round at the Glen Abbey Golf Club.

I know the home crowd is thrilled with Weir, but the least known of these four is Kresge, my nephew, and if you're into rooting for your countryman and you're an American, Cliff Kresge is the American in the top group, so please consider rooting for him.
Kresge ended his round with two birdies to return a four-under 67. Singh rebounded from a triple bogey on the 11th hole to shoot a one-over 72 while Parnevik had a 71.

The 35-year-old Kresge will partner Weir on Sunday but he said he was used to the attention it would bring after he played with Tiger Woods in the final weekend of last year's Western Open.

"It'll be similar to playing with Tiger last year at the Western,'' Kresge said.

"Hopefully I can draw on those experiences and learn from that and do all right."

Go, Cliff! I was there last year, when Cliff played in a threesome with Tiger. I was impressed at how well he stood up to the crazy clamor that surrounds Tiger, and I'm always impressed by the nerves of steel it takes to play professional golf, where everything counts and hundreds of thousands of dollars are won or lost on a single stroke. On their home turf, the Canadians will be there in force cheering for Weir, just as the Tiger fans were all about Tiger last year when Cliff played alongside him. It will be a hard day of playing for himself surrounded by a hoard who loves the other guy. Much as I know the Canadians would rejoice to see their man win, I'm going to go all chauvinistic and say America! America! Let the American win!

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