x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Weary McDowell slips behind and says there's not much left in tank

Two months spent hoarding euros fizzled rapidly into two days spent hoarding frustration for Graeme McDowell.

DUBAI // So the tortoise sped up, spied the home stretch and ... craved a nap.

Two months spent hoarding euros fizzled rapidly into two days spent hoarding frustration for Graeme McDowell, the last man with a faint-and-getting-fainter chance of catching Martin Kaymer to win the Race To Dubai.

"I just don't think I have a huge amount in the tank," the US Open champion said after his second-round 73 left him at one-over par and eight shots behind Kaymer who is joint-fourth in the tournament while still €290,000 (Dh1.42 million) behind a front-running Kaymer on the 2010 European Tour money list.

The race seemed off after yesterday's play, and the depth of the ditch could owe to McDowell's schedule since mid-September, roaming Earth toward the Earth Course through Austria, Scotland, Spain, Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong with a Ryder Cup in Wales thrown in.

My patience is very quick to go out there today," McDowell said. "I find this golf course quite difficult. The second I get out of position, I find it tough to scramble around here. I'm just not putting the greens very well, very grainy and tough to read."

And the stem of that: "I think the frustration level that I was displaying out there, it's definitely because I don't have a lot left in the tank. I don't have the energy to be patient with myself. I don't have the energy to be digging deep. It's OK when things are on a string, you're knocking down flags and making birdies, but when you've got to grind, it's just not in there."

Kaymer felt comfortable enough to say: "So he's 10 behind [the leaders]. It will be tough to win for him." And McDowell had to summon enough energy to dip into optimism to say: "It's not over. 65-65 is not out of the question, of course."