PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – After the worst round of his fledgling professional career, Jon Rahm pointed to his tee shot on the fourth hole and offered an explanation that served as a microcosm for his entire day.
“I do not know what went through my body,” he said.
Rahm began the third round of The Players Championship in a tie for ninth, five shots off the lead. But he played his first seven holes in 7 over, and after signing for a 10-over 82 he actually fell victim to the secondary, 54-hole cut that again culled the field to the low 70 players plus ties.
Rahm bogeyed three of his first four holes, then carded back-to-back double bogeys on Nos. 6 and 7. The Spaniard hadn’t failed to break 40 on Tour since turning pro in June, but Saturday he followed a front-nine 42 with a back-nine 40.
Not exactly the manner in which he expected to exit TPC Sawgrass.
“I just kept getting pounded and pounded,” Rahm said. “Towards the end, I feel like my body just wasn’t responding, and it’s something that hasn’t happened in a while.”
Rahm was perhaps the most surprising victim of the 54-hole cut, which was required once more than 78 players made the 36-hole cut. A total of 82 players teed it up in the third round, and the 11 players who finished at 6 over or worse – including Justin Thomas and Matt Kuchar – will not return for the final round.
Rahm had entered the week on a run of five top-10 finishes over his last six starts, but he doesn’t plan to dwell on a day at the office that simply went from bad to worse.
“There’s nothing else to do. There’s nothing, very few good things coming out of today, really,” he said. “Nothing else I can do. Enjoy the extra day of rest.”