Weir Tames Winds for Genuity Lead


Bad weather is expected Sunday, pushing up the Genuity Championship tee times and forcing the players to go off in threesomes. Mike Weir, who is ahead by one stroke over Hal Sutton, says let it blow, let it blow, let it blow.
'I think it separates the players who are really playing well,' said Weir. 'In the wind you really have to strike the ball solidly. I am a very good bad-weather player, so it doesn't matter either/or, I think. I play well in bad weather.'
Saturday was a day for defense at Doral. As opposed to opening day when he shot a 62, Weir shot a 69 Saturday to edge into the lead. He was in a deadlock for the lead with Sutton until the final hole, when he laced a 5-iron at Doral's Blue Monster that came to rest four feet from the hole. He stroked it dead-center to finish at 15-under-par 201.
But they are bunched very close behind him. Sutton is at 14-under while Davis Love III and Jeff Sluman are at 12-under.
'It got a little blustery today before we teed off,' said Love. 'That is what you expect here every day in the afternoons. It is some pretty good wind.
'But I think we have gotten a reprieve for a few rounds. This is the way we expect to see it. It is a little different direction, but it definitely played tough. The greens dried out real quick and got firm a little faster, so it was a real tough day.'
Love has been one of the hottest players this year, winning at the AT&T, losing a playoff at the Buick Invitational and finishing a shot out of a playoff at the Nissan. His superior play has continued on the East Coast with the tall Georgian having a chance to win again.
Weir got out to a quick start with an eagle on par-5 first, bumping in a 50-footer with a 5-wood, while Friday night leader Stewart Cink was bogeying the second and third holes. Sutton had caught him by the eighth, however, and went ahead with birdies on 10 and 11. Weir birdied the par-5 12th and it was close the entire back nine, Weir finally nosing ahead with his birdie on No. 18.
'I know at one point we got to where we were four shots on the rest of the field,' said Sutton, speaking of No. 10. 'I didn't like the way I finished. I hit it six feet on 17 and missed it - but I didn't play badly. You shoot 70 in the last group and the wind is blowing pretty hard . I would have liked to held on, but Mike made two bogeys in a row himself.'
Love has zoomed to the top of the Tour with his high finishes this year. 'I know I can hit good shots, rather than wondering if I can hit a good shot, or if I can drive it down the middle on 18 and hit an 8-iron and make a birdie,' he said. 'I know I can do that.
'I just wonder why I miss a fairway at 17, or why I pipe a 3-wood in the lake. How can the same guy pipe it on 18, and hit an 8-iron six feet and make it? That is the thing that bothers me. I don't doubt I can go out tomorrow and drive it down the middle at 1 and make (an eagle) 3.
'I just wonder why hit it in the left rough the last two days. But I will go out tomorrow with a good attitude and say, `Hey, I've made my mistakes for this week,' and see if we can play a good round.'
Weir conceded that Sunday's final threesome of himself, Sutton and Love will be fun to watch.

'Davis is playing great,' he said. 'I am looking forward to playing with those two guys, really I am. Two of the best players out here, and I think I am close to being where I want to be. That is what it's all about.'
See Full-Field scores from the Genuity Championship here.
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