Past meets present at Open 

The past leaped into the present on Thursday. Three men who won majors and became subjects of a book moved onto the leaderboard the first day of the 2010 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

It was 2003, seven years, ago, when Mike Weir won the Masters, Jim Furyk the U.S. Open, Ben Curtis the British Open and Shaun Micheel the PGA. Author John Feinstein details their triumphs in “Moment of Glory,” and how each is searching for a second big win.

Maybe it happens this week.

Micheel is in a three-way tie for the lead with Paul Casey and Brendon de Jonge at 2-under 69. Weir is among the group at 1-under 70, a shot back, and Furyk is among those at 1-over 72. Curtis is a distant nine shots back after shooting 78.

Micheel underwent shoulder surgery and has suffered from low testosterone. Now his mother is ill with cancer.

“I was trying to win last week for her,” Micheel said of the St Jude Classic in his home town of Memphis. “I came in fourth. I played well. It’s tough. I’m trying to play for somebody else, for her. It’s always been me, me, me. Now it doesn’t matter anymore.”

NOTES: Not a great day for the top two players in the world rankings. No. 1 Tiger Woods and No. 2 Phil Mickelson didn’t make a birdie between them, Woods shooting a 3-over 74 in the afternoon after Mickelson had his 75 in the morning. ... Rafael Cabrera-Bello, a 26-year-old Spaniard who lives in the Canary Islands, was at 71, showing tremendous perseverance. He was stopped from boarding a flight at Madrid because of passport problems. Then, after acquiring a new passport, he left a day late. After clearing customs in Philadelphia, he learned his golf bag didn’t arrive. He borrowed some wedges to practice and then Thursday went out for his first round in a major and briefly was in first place. ... Dustin Johnson, who both this year and in 2009 won the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, was at 71.


The leaders

Shaun Micheel: 34-35—69

Paul Casey: 34-35—69

Brendon de Jonge: 32-37—69

Rafael Cabrera-Bello: 34-36—70

K. J. Choi: 35-35—70

Mike Weir: 35-35—70

Ian Poulter: 34-36—70

Alex Cejka: 34-36—70

Ryo Ishikawa: 34-36—70


The names

Jim Furyk: 37-35—72

Padraig Harrington: 35-38—73

Lucas Glover: 36-37—73

Sergio Garcia: 37-36—73

Ernie Els: 35-38—73

Lee Westwood: 38-36—74

Tiger Woods: 36-38—74

Vijay Singh: 35-39—74

Phil Mickelson: 36-39—75


Key stat

Holes No. 1 and 3-7 were six of the seven easiest holes on Thursday.


Key number

0 Combined birdies by Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in the first round, the first time that’s happened when they’ve been in a tournament together


Quoteworthy

“I hit the ball well enough to shoot a good score, but these greens are just awful.”

— Tiger Woods

About The Author

Art Spander

Art Spander

Bio:
Art Spander has been covering Bay Area sports since 1965 and also writes on www.artspander.com and www.bleacherreport.com. Email him at typoes@aol.com.
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