Golf history is strewn with players who either couldn’t be denied or just caught lightning in a bottle in their major championship debuts, belying the axiom that it takes experience to win majors.
History, however, has never seen someone like Collin Morikawa, who was not once but two times a maiden winner in both his first PGA Championship and his first Open Championship. The 24-year-old got halfway to a career slam in two attempts. It must be terribly frustrating to him that he could do no better than T44 and T35 in his Masters and U.S. Open debuts, respectively.
Skeptics wondered whether or not Morikawa benefitted from not having fans present when he stormed to victory in relative solitude at TPC Harding Park last summer in only his second career major start. If anyone thought that warranted an asterisk, Morikawa made an emphatic statement in front of throngs at Royal St. George’s and played a flawless final 31 holes to fend off a cast of challengers that included at times Sunday six players with a combined 12 majors among the...
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