Ailing DeLaet tries to bounce back for PGA Championship

 

 
 
 
 
Canada's Graham DeLaet lines up a putt on the sixth green during the second round of the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club South Course last Friday in Akron, Ohio.
 

Canada's Graham DeLaet lines up a putt on the sixth green during the second round of the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club South Course last Friday in Akron, Ohio.

Photograph by: Gregory Shamus, Getty Images

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. — There are the dietician-approved weight-loss programs, and then there is the one that comes from the other "di" word.

Graham DeLaet has shed 10 pounds owing to the latter, a raging dose of the flu that floored him at last weekend's WGC Bridgestone Invitational, leaving him unable to lift his head off the pillow Sunday morning.

"Except to go to the bathroom," he said Tuesday, after a three-hour and 20-minute nine holes of practice on a steaming hot day at Valhalla Golf Club that left an already-weakened body drained and ready for some fluid replacement.

"I might even try to get a couple of bags of I.V. today and tomorrow and try to stay on top of it, because it's going to be hot and humid and you sweat a lot more. I'm just tired right now, more than anything," said the 32-year-old from Weyburn, Sask.

He will be in the starting blocks Thursday afternoon for the opening round of the PGA Championship, playing with Spain's Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and long-hitting Gary Woodland, but he has no idea how ready he'll be.

"I'm feeling better physically, but it's kind of taken its toll on me a little bit," said DeLaet, "but I feel, especially with the late Thursday tee time, I should be good to go by then."

"Preparation is a little different, just nine holes today and nine holes tomorrow, but the main thing is to try to be as physically healthy as I can. As far as preparation goes, Jules (caddie Julien Trudeau) will be working hard and have all the lines.

"So there's no real expectations, and sometimes that's a good thing. I've played Monday qualifiers, gone and played those courses almost blind and shot six or seven under. So hopefully that's the case, but the main focus is to try to be healthy."

DeLaet's wife Ruby had the flu at the Canadian Open in Montreal, and he thinks he just got his turn a week later.

He opened with strong rounds of 67-69 at the Bridgestone, but struggled Saturday when the flu began to hit.

"My body wasn't moving as well as it normally does. Looking back on it, it was hard to control my emotions and try to fight back," he said. "It was just a tough day, and I literally couldn't get out of bed Sunday morning.

"It was disappointing because it's a big tournament and I was playing well coming in, and felt my game was in really good shape, so to withdraw was not what I had in mind. It's the first time I've ever had to withdraw in the middle of a tournament in my entire professional career."

Canada's other entry, David Hearn, is paired with club pro Stuart Deane of Arlington, Texas, and France's Alexander Levy.

ccole@vancouversun.com

Twitter.com/rcamcole

 
 
 
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Canada's Graham DeLaet lines up a putt on the sixth green during the second round of the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club South Course last Friday in Akron, Ohio.
 

Canada's Graham DeLaet lines up a putt on the sixth green during the second round of the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club South Course last Friday in Akron, Ohio.

Photograph by: Gregory Shamus, Getty Images

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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