Painful finish in sight for Weir

CHRIS STEVENSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:46 PM ET

KOHLER, Wisc. ≠- Itís going to be a painful rest of the year for Mike Weir.

The only thing that is going to help the Canadian lefty get healthy is rest and that wonít be happening until his season is over.

That might not be too far off, unless Weir can play some solid golf in his next couple of tournaments, starting Thursday at the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.

In the meantime, Weir is continuing to visit the physiotherapy trailer on a daily basis to have the tendinitis in his right elbow treated.

ďIím just trying to get through the year, then I need to rest it. Thatís what Iíve been told by a number of people,Ē said Weir as he continued preparations for the PGA which will see him tee off Thursday in a group with Englandís Ross Fisher and Texan Chad Campbell.

ď(The elbow) is a nuisance, for sure. Iím just riding out the rest of the year and, unfortunately, Iím in a position where I have to play a lot.Ē

Since finishing sixth at the Bob Hope Classic in his first start of the year, Weirís best finish in a stroke play event is a pair of ties for 26th in March. He has missed the cut in five of his last eight events, earning less than $112,000 and slipping to 125th on the money list with $559,092. He could be headed for his poorest year, in terms of the money list, since 2002, when he earned $843,890.

He is 126th and on the outside looking in when it comes to qualifying for the FedEx Cup playoffs and will need some good play this week and next at the Wyndham Championship to earn a spot in the playoff field.

The four-event FedEx Cup playoffs get under way with The Barclays in New Jersey Aug. 26-29.

Never a big hitter, Weir is 185th on the PGA Tour in driving distance with an average of 273.9 yards and 184th in driving accuracy, hitting 53.98% of fairways; not a good combination. Heís 194th in greens hit in regulation, another indication of the need for improvement in his ball striking. His putting has been a strong suit, though, as he ranks 28th in putts per green in regulation and second in putts per round (28.09).

Weirís struggles this year have led to speculation the 40-year-old is onto the slippery slope of the downside of his career, but he bristled at that suggestion.

ďItís a struggle right now, no question about that,Ē he told QMI Agency. ďBut Iím going to keep working hard. That has been the hallmark of my game. Iíve always been a grinder and things have never come easy for me. Iíve always had to work hard. The only person that has to believe in myself is me and I do.

ďThis is just a period in my game Iím going through right now. A career has its ups and downs and itís not fun. Besides my elbow, Iím healthy and I still feel I can play a long time."

Weir, his right elbow in a wrap Wednesday, hit balls on the range with coach Mike Wilson and then went out and played the front nine at Whistling Straits.

His tee-to-green game looked solid. He hit a strong shot into the 221-yard, par-3 seventh and two admirable hybrids, one to the front and one to the back of the par-4, 507 yard eighth hole.

ďI feel good. Iím hitting it very nicely,Ē said Weir.

When asked if he could find the game to win again, he answered quickly.

ďAbsolutely,Ē he said. ďI can win this week.Ē


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