Weir finishes on positive note

Defending champion Mike Weir, of Canada, chips out of a bunker onto the 13th green during the...

Defending champion Mike Weir, of Canada, chips out of a bunker onto the 13th green during the second round of the Frys.com Open golf tournament Friday, Oct. 24, 2008.(AP Photo/Paul Connors)

IAN HUTCHINSON

, Last Updated: 9:11 AM ET

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- There absolutely is no truth to the rumour that Mike Weir predicted a 58 in yesterday's final round of the Frys.com Open at the Grayhawk Golf Club's Raptor course.

That number would have put Weir into the history books and won him the tournament for the second year in a row. His lighthearted remark described the way he was feeling, combined with the spectacular conditions in the Valley of the Sun.

"I didn't predict it," Weir said with a grin. "I said: 'I'm going to go after it.' I didn't predict anything, but I was going to try."

Weir's style all along never has had anything to do with boasts. When he has hit the peaks of his career, it's always his clubs talking and they were doing just that after Weir came into the last round seven shots off the lead and tied for 24th.

Yesterday, he recorded six birdies and an eagle against just one bogey to finish with a seven-under 63. It wasn't enough to successfully defend his 2007 Frys.com championship, but it was enough to send him into the off-season in a positive frame of mind.

"(Yesterday), the conditions were right to go after it. The greens were fairly soft. It was a day, from the position I was in, I really needed to try to attack," said Weir, who tied for fourth.

"I had plenty of opportunities to even be lower. I missed probably four or five putts inside 10 feet. It really, really could have been a special round, but it was still a great round, a good way to finish on the last hole with a nice 25-footer (for birdie)."

Weir won't play again until the Chevron World Challenge, hosted by Tiger Woods, just before Christmas.

"After this week, I'm off until Tiger's event in California, but I'm just going to try to be at home," said Weir, adding that he isn't tempted to try one more event after the 63.

"I'm tired," he said. "I put everything I had into this week and practised hard. I'm ready for a break and my family's ready for me to be home for awhile."

His performance yesterday did provide a spectacular finish, but not as spectacular as last year when Weir came down the stretch with a win against Woods at the Presidents Cup and the victory in Scottsdale, which ended a winless streak of three-and-a-half years.

"I think it definitely restored some confidence. I still was confident in my game and I was playing well," recalled Weir, who had gone 87 starts without a win before tying the late George Knudson for most victories by a Canadian on the PGA Tour with his triumph in Scottsdale.

"When you're able to do that, come through, it just reminds you that you can still do it when you need to and have to do it.

"It was a much nicer off-season, finishing with a win like that. I did go overseas and play and represent Canada in the World Cup in China last year, but outside of that, it was a nice, relaxing, very satisfying off-season with the way I finished the year with the Presidents Cup and winning here," he said.

It appeared that Weir would bolt from the gate in 2008 when he finished fourth at the season-opening Mercedes-Benz Championship at Kapalua, but that was his lone top-10 until the beginning of June when Weir tied for second at the Memorial.

That finish illustrated that work on his short game was starting to pay off. While the latter stages of this year didn't include a tournament win or a victory against the No. 1 player in the world, it was sprinkled with some sugar as Weir now has seven top-10s since the Memorial, including four in his last five events.

While the final stages of last season, when he recorded just four top-10s all year, was all about wins, the latter part of 2008 is all about consistency, especially in the FedEx Cup playoffs in which Weir tied for seventh at The Barclays, was runner-up at the Deutsche Bank and tied for sixth at the Tour Championship.

It's enough to send him into the off-season into a positive frame of mind, especially since dialing in his wedges and improving his putting over the last few months of the season.


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