Open delivers drama despite lack of big names

William McGirt of the U.S. hits out of a greenside bunker on the18th green during the final round...

William McGirt of the U.S. hits out of a greenside bunker on the18th green during the final round at the Canadian Open golf tournament at Hamilton Golf and Country Club in Ancaster, Ontario, July 29, 2012. (REUTERS)

TIM MCKAY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:21 PM ET

About midway through the final-round broadcast, a buddy e-mailed to ask, "Who are these guys?"

"These guys" were Robert Garrigus, William McGirt and Scott Piercy, who had played well all week and were at the centre of CBS Sports coverage of the Canadian Open on Sunday.

It wasn't exactly a dream trio for organizers or TV executives and fans, especially when you consider some of the bigger names (British Open champ Ernie Els, for example), and the 23 hopeful Canadians, who were front of mind as the week began.

But they put on a good show, not always for their brilliant shot-making, and that's really all the viewing audience could ask.

There's something to be said for dominant performances, like that of Rory McIlroy at last year's U.S. Open at Congressional or Tiger Woods' tour de force at Pebble Beach in 2000. But when it's a bunch of guys the average fan may or may not have heard of, you want some drama at the end.

The Canadian Open certainly delivered that, with Scott Piercy finishing at 17-under par and waiting while McGirt and Garrigus hacked their way in, both missing putts on 18 to hand Piercy his second PGA Tour victory.

Really, it was the 17th hole at Hamilton Golf and Country Club that sunk both McGirt and Garrigus. The nerves got to both of them and they looked quite average on a hole that Garrigus had birdied each of the previous three days.

"These guys are just butchering this hole," said frank commentator Gary McCord. "You'd think with all these flame-throwers, they'd be killing the thing."

Garrigus ended up with a par-par finish to fall one shot short of Piercy, while McGirt finished par-bogey to tie for second.

Don't forget, though, that when I use the term average, it's relative. I closed with an eight on 17 and a bogey on 18 during the media day at Hamilton a few weeks back.

After Thursday's first round it was predicted here that Matt Kuchar was a good bet to finish in the top-10 and Adam Hadwin had a good shot at retaining his Rivermead Cup as low Canadian.

Kuchar finished tied for 34th and Hadwin missed the cut.

Oops.

* * * * *

As coverage wrapped up about 20 minutes early and the on-air talent was forced to try to bridge that gap, the background music became almost nauseating as CBS filler droned on.

And as I sat there watching the tournament's closing credits for some reason, it donned on me why the music likely wouldn't appeal to the desired 25-34 or 35-44 age brackets.

One word: Yanni.


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