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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 205
young, and appeared destined for success, and then couldn’t quite make it happen against the big boys. That could so easily have been the end of Jimmy Walker’s tale, and yet the next time he swings a club for cash and points itwillbeasaPGA Champion. When you win 21 high school tournaments and then take your talents to college at Baylor – where you play every single tournament over three years and rack up wins and top-10 finishes like you have ownership rights over the leaderboard – people (rightly or wrongly) expect big things to follow. But in the 13 years after Walker turned professional straight out of college in 2001, the downs flowed far more freely than the all too fleeting ups, as he struggled to make things stick on the big stage. Walker’s path to this week’s major success is reasonably well chronicled. Having grafted out a living on the Nationwide Tour in 2003 and 2004, he earned his PGA Tour card for the 2005 season but played just nine events due to injury and quickly found himself back on the second-tier circuit in 2007. The Texas native, who as a young man had only ever known success, was on the fast track to “whatever happened to...” status, seemingly unable to unlock the secret of the PGA Tour. “I’m not sure why it took me so long to get where I am now,” Walker said in the wake of his victory at Baltusrol. “I did get injured when I first got on Tour. My neck can be a problem even today, and it was a while before I got over that.” E VERYONE knows a kid like Jimmy Walker. You know the one. The guy who was untouchable as a junior; so far out of most of his competitors’ leagues that they’d all visibly shrink a couple of centimetres when he rolled into the car park, knowing that they were now likely playing for second. The player who brained them at high school before showing prodigious potential in college. The one who achieved so much, so
GA Express 204
GA Express 206