Thankful to be playing, Weir starts KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship strong at Southern Hills
Mike Weir, whose opening-round 2-under 68 at Southern Hills Country Club left him one shot off the lead when Thursday’s morning wave finished, was concerned on Tuesday that he might not be able to play in this week’s KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship. His back was acting up, and he said he couldn’t even think about playing on Tuesday.
“I couldn't move,” Weir said. “I wasn't moving well at all. I couldn't even chip a ball. Well I could chip a ball, that was about it, after I got some rehab done by the guys. I got to thank Woody and Dougie in the (PGA Tour fitness) trailer, they did a phenomenal job to get me ready. If those guys weren't here, I wouldn't be standing here. No way. So my hat's off to those guys, they got me ready.”
Weir said he tweaked his back doing “old man stuff” such as carrying luggage and making a four-hour drive to Tulsa. “I just leaned over the wrong way setting things down, and that was it,” he said.
Weir, 51, won for the first time in 13 years earlier in 2021 when he captured the Insperity Invitational in Houston, outlasting David Toms, John Daly and Tim Petrovic. He said putting has held him back in recent years, but on Thursday, it was a hot putter that sparked his good play. Included in his six birdies was a 40-footer he made up and over a hill at the par-5 13th hole. He said it was probably the longest putt he has made this year. For Weir, it feels good to be back in contention again.
“Yeah, it was a long battle to kind of get back there,” said Weir, the 2003 Masters champion. “Confidence-wise, I was confident before I won, but I think just getting one just feels great. I don't know if it added a lot more confidence, I think it just felt great to see all the work kind of culminate and finally hoist a trophy. That felt really good.”