Furyk having tough time shaking off WGC collapse

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KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – Jim Furyk would rather be fishing or swimming with his kids this week.

The 16-time PGA Tour winner conceded Thursday that it has been difficult coming into the PGA Championship the week after his 72nd hole collapse led to a loss at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

Furyk was as honest about it Thursday as he was in Sunday’s aftermath.

“I’d rather have the week off,” said Furyk, who opened the PGA Championship with an even-par 72. “To come back on the golf course, it’s easier putting it behind you with a week off.”

Furyk, who made double bogey at the 72nd hole at Firestone Sunday to lose by a stroke to Keegan Bradley, said it was easier coming back from his U.S. Open loss in June than it has been coming back this time. Furyk enjoyed some time off after he lost the U.S. Open with a stumble at the 70th hole.

“I can go fishing, I can go swimming with the kids,” Furyk said of the healing that comes in a week off.

Furyk said he had a tough morning the day after the WGC-Bridgestone’s finish.

“You wake up, and think, `What in the world happened? That isn’t possible,’” he said.

Family, friends and colleagues have stepped forward with encouragement this week, and Furyk said he’s grateful, but he says it’s still tough.

“It’s a Catch-22,” he said. “It’s nice to have people genuinely supportive. The only negative is you have to keep re-hashing it.”

Furyk doesn't believe his game is well suited for Kiawah Island. It adds to the challenge of bouncing back. Still, Furyk has more than a major to play for this week. He's 11th on the American Ryder Cup points list. The top eight at the conclusion of the PGA Championship automatically qualify for the team. He needs a finish of third place or better to have a chance to crack the top eight.