Dublin, OH — Jon Curran is starting his 55th career PGA TOUR start and with no wins, is a name that many golf fans are not going to recognize. That was evident during his third round at the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide, as many of the larger crowds flocked to the bigger names on the course.
While many big names faltered, Curran’s name crept up the leader board, and at 13-under par, he sits one stroke back of the current leaders of Matt Kuchar, William McGirt and Gary Woodland.
He just needed to make up a few shots to get there.
Throughout his round, Curran constantly seemed to be working himself out of jams or just miss hit shots.
“I could hit more fairways and hit more greens,” said Curran about his round. “I was just kind of a little off the tee and a couple of wayward shots around the greens. I could do a little better and make that easier on myself.”
His only card blemish on the day was a bogey on the par-4, 13th. He left his second shot left him with a 65-foot putt that he would overpower, leaving him with a 14-foot putt for par. He would end up three-putting the hole.
His biggest save, and lateral move up the leader board, came on a beautiful 43-foot chip in for birdie on the par-4 17th.
After a great tee shot down the center of the fairway, his second shot faded to the right of the green, getting caught up in the rough.
“I kind of was in between clubs and didn’t hit a great shot,” Curran said of his second shot.
But it was his third shot, that may have finally caught the attention of the crowd and his assent into the top of the leader board.
“I hit it over there the last three days, and I finally had a good lie. Last couple days, I’ve had terrible lies,” said Curran. “I had a good lie, and it was into the wind. It was a tough shot, but it wasn’t as hard as it looked.”
Curran admitted that his short game has saved him a few times over the last couple of days, and really shown through Saturday. Curran’s approach is one that is conservative and smart and he carries the right amount of attitude and confidence to compete during the Tournament’s final day. Curran knows his game, it is based on a very conservative approach.
“I don’t go for any par-5’s. I lay up and hit pretty controlled wedges into par-5’s and kind of attack the course that way,” Curran said.
Curran will be paired with Dustin Johnson, one of the games longest ball hitters and Adam Hadwin, a player more suited for his style of play during for the day’s final round.
“I just stick with my own game,” Curran said about his style of play. “I’ve been out here long enough to know that’s what produces the best results.”
Curran, being a much lesser name for this final round, may play into his advantage. Without having the added pressure of those expecting success from him, knowing his game, and what this course has to offer, Curran seems lose and confident.
“I feel great,” said Curran. “I got nothing to lose. I like this golf course. I’ve been playing great. Just trying to go out and pretend like it’s the first round of the tournament and just go as low as I can go.”