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Memorial Tournament: Dustin Johnson struggles mightily at Muirfield Village

02 Juin 2017

World No. 3 Jason Day now makes his home in the Columbus area and is a member of Muirfield Village.

Five FedExCup champions are at Memorial 2017: Spieth (2015), Billy Horschel (2014), Bill Haas (2011), Jim Furyk (2010) and Vijay Singh (2008).

In eight previous appearances, Day's best finish is tied for 27th. 17 and 18 to avert a total disaster.

The Memorial began in 1976, the ideal date to commemorate legends of the game with a tournament that tries to imitate the pure standards of golf found at Augusta National and a golf course at Muirfield Village that is rarely anything but pure.

His round began with consecutive bogeys and never got on track. His mother was diagnosed with lung cancer, and the outlook was bleak until he brought her from Australia to OH for surgery. "If it is my ultimate goal to play on the PGA Tour, I just definitely need to go capitalize on this and trust the work and practice I have been putting in". "You'd think like Capitol Grille or Ruth's Chris Steakhouse". "And the other years I've played here, I've always loved it". I wanted to deliver a speech that came from the heart and I did it. "I think that's half the battle - knowing how your body is going to react". That's the biggest thing with playing competitive golf, you have to find a balance between personal stuff and playing competitive golf. But it's getting back to where I feel like I'm getting a lot more comfortable and a lot more confident in the game. He drives the ball very accurately (30th in accuracy), he ranks in the Top 20 in sand save percentage, and is Top 10 in proximity to hole on shots 175-200 yards.

The Queenslander has made no secret that the Major's are his biggest focus this year and will be using The Memorial as preparation for the U.S. Open in two weeks time. He's in good form after backdooring a Top 10 finish by shooting 68 on Sunday at the Players. "I can't wait to hear the welcome on the first tee Thursday".

The sunshine, warm temperatures, and cold beverages might have contributed to the atmosphere. Certainly, there are feelings of small things similar to the Masters here, which obviously has been very special to him in his career. "The crowds are awesome". I made my own decisions. Fairway widths are more generous than the last several PGA Tour venues, and this is definitely a second-shot golf course. "I really like this golf course, it suits me". Both finished second last week in Texas, so this is like a carry over to see who wins. Muirfield Village Golf Club, the site of the 2013 President's Cup, gets to showcase itself on the PGA Tour every year, and act as the official tune up for the U.S Open.

CBS Sports on-course reporter Dottie Pepper takes a look at what to expect at this venerable invitational and who might receive the winning handshake from the Golden Bear at week's end.

"That's sort of Jay's problem now", Jack Nicklaus said.

Nicklaus watched it all unfold and recognized what was happening as the two unheralded golfers outlasted established winners such as Johnson, McIlroy, Kuchar, J.B. Holmes and Gary Woodland.

Further up the leaderboard Jordan Spieth got off to a fine start, the two-time Major victor carding a 66 on Thursday.

Indeed, as the years have peeled away, Nicklaus has managed the evolution of the golf course. "How many tournaments do you think that we entered that we withdrew from during the course of our career?" "The guys really embrace having Jack around". The $1.53 million check was nearly 100 times more than McGirt's previous career-best tournament-winning check - $16,000 from the 2007 Cabarrus Classic on the Tar Heel Tour. "You just kind of show up and they would hand you a scorecard and you would have to walk inside and get a cart key". Defending champion: William McGirt.

Memorial Tournament: Dustin Johnson struggles mightily at Muirfield Village