Donaldson Fulfilling Promise

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Published 11/07/2012 11:55:30
 

They were queuing up to compliment Royal Portrush when it staged the Irish Open, the other week, and it was not just the famous Northern Ireland triumvirate, Rory McIlroy, Darren Clarke, and Graeme McDowell, who were singing its praises.

Players and fans alike (and there were record attendances) were eager to say just what a fantastic golf test these links provided, and how it would be a perfect venue to host the Open, one day.

Certainly, one man who wouldn't complain if Royal Portrush was added to the Open rota is Jamie Donaldson, who recently ended a 12-year wait for his first European Tour victory on the course.

One could be excused for thinking that a 36-year-old notching up his first big win at his 255th attempt would comfortably qualify as a ‘flash in the pan', and a dismal showing at the French Open the following week would appear to confirm those sentiments.

But wait a minute; Donaldson did not just beat a good field at Portrush, he annihilated them; five birdies in the last seven holes to win by four clear shots, proving that he has what it takes to raise his game when the going gets tough.

And if Portrush is as good a links test as they all said it was, then the 36-year-old Welshman, now ranked 63 in the world, surely passed a big audition, and is entitled to be considered a lively outsider on the Betfair Golf website.

His Majors record doesn't bear much scrutiny, but that's mainly because he has only played in two of them (the 2006 Open and last year's USPGA, missing the cut in both).

But, though Donaldson may be no spring chicken, there are reasons to believe his best days are in front of him. A serious back problem now overcome, he seems at last to be realising the potential many on the Tour have long recognised.

The Betfair Golf Open Championship pages have Donaldson ranked at an outside 180/1.

 




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