Harrington rues loss of confidence in build-up to US Open

Making the short journey from Westchester, just outside New York, to the eastern end of Long Island for this week's US Open at Shinnecock Hills, was a happy experience for Sergio Garcia after his victory in the Buick Classic on Sunday. It was not such a jolly journey for Padraig Harrington, though, despite making it into a play-off.

Making the short journey from Westchester, just outside New York, to the eastern end of Long Island for this week's US Open at Shinnecock Hills, was a happy experience for Sergio Garcia after his victory in the Buick Classic on Sunday. It was not such a jolly journey for Padraig Harrington, though, despite making it into a play-off.

"I played terribly all week," the Irishman said. "I didn't know where the ball was going next. It was a case of knuckling down, being aggressive and trying to make as many birdies as possible.

"In many ways, the week before the US Open, it would have been better to saunter along somewhere in the middle of the field knowing I had confidence in my swing. I don't have any confidence in my swing at the moment." Harrington chipped in at the 18th to tie with Garcia and the South African Rory Sabbatini at 12 under par. The Dubliner then had a chance from 10 feet to win at the first extra hole of the play-off but his putt dribbled across the right hand side of the hole.

It was a costly miss. He was eliminated on the second play-off hole before Garcia holed from seven feet to see off Sabbatini at the next. It was Garcia's second victory at the Buick and his second in a month after remodelling his swing last season. "I just want to keep doing what I'm doing and hope the momentum keeps going next week," the 24-year-old Spaniard said. "I just want to give myself a chance on the back nine on Sunday. I know it is a matter of time before I can put it all together in a major."

Vijay Singh, Fred Couples and Tom Byrum tied for fourth place two strokes outside the play-off with Britain's Luke Donald, seventh, and Fredrik Jacobson a further shot back.

Although Harrington's 23rd runners-up finish denied him a first official victory in the States, Garcia's win put him second on the world points list of the European Ryder Cup rankings and well placed to secure a spot for Oakland Hills in September. Last time, he was only picked after being given a wild card.

Hal Sutton, the US Ryder Cup captain, was relieved that America won the Curtis Cup at Formby to prevent a clean sweep by Europe, Great Britain and Ireland. "Let's hope we can keep the winning streak going in September," he said.

* Sweden's Annika Sorenstam claimed her seventh major title by defending the LPGA Championship in Wilmington, Delaware, on Sunday, cruising to a three-stroke victory with a four-round 13-under-par 271 total. South Korea's Ahn Shi Hyun was second, two shots ahead of her compatriot, Grace Park.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test
Tour de France 2015: Twins Simon and Adam Yates have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Twins have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Yates brothers will target the steepest sections in bid to win a stage in France
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy