Golf not just about results

CHRIS STEVENSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:39 PM ET

BLAINVILLE, Que. - Fred Couples got himself in position to have a shot at winning the inaugural Montreal Championship Sunday.

But no matter what the outcome, Couples will be a winner in the eyes of Richard Farley, a prominent member of the Montreal golf community who is dying of lung cancer. Couples is his favourite player, and through Quebec pro Carlo Blanchard, Farley got to fulfill a dream of his when he met Couples Thursday.

“I just wanted to see this day,” says Farley, who was overcome with emotion. “I phoned Carlo and told him I was dying and I wasn’t going to be around much longer. I wanted to meet Fred Couples, but I just didn’t know if I would make it this long. I fought and fought for another day, and here I am today. If I don’t make it past tomorrow, I’ve seen my dream.”

When Couples stepped onto the tee for the pro-am Thursday, tournament director Dave Skitt had Farley introduced to the crowd and Couples led the gallery in a prolonged ovation.

Sometimes it’s not just about the results.

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Fans get about as close to the action in golf as in any sport. Sometimes too close.

When D.A. Weibring, who had a course-record 63, hit his approach long on the eighth hole, there was a fan standing right behind him doing play-by-play.

“I thought I had Johnny Miller behind me,” said Weibring, referring to the NBC commentator. “‘It’s a monster putt ... a hard putt ... he can’t handle this one.’”

It was a big breaker and Weibring swung it out to take a slope.

“It’s way off,” said the fan.

“Keep watching,” said Weibring as the ball nestled up to the hole, just one foot away.

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The Canadian contingent at the event pretty much missed the birdie bonanza Saturday. Jim Rutledge of Victoria, B.C., and Quebec’s Yvan Beachemin led the way with 69s. That left Rutledge to lead the way for the Canadians in a tie for 34th at 140. Beauchemin is at 141 (T44). Quebec’s Daniel Talbot had a 72 (142 total, tied for 54th) and British Columbia’s Dave Barr had his second-straight 74 (tied for 74th).

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Dave Rummells was disqualifed halfway through the second round Saturday for having a non-conforming putter grip. Apparently it was flat on the sides where the Rules of Golf dictate they must be round.

chris.stevenson@sunmedia.ca


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