Slow start for Harrington in rain hit Travelers
  Padraig Harrington in action at last week’s US Open. Credit: golffile.ie

Padraig Harrington in action at last week’s US Open. Credit: golffile.ie

Padraig Harrington might have left Maryland for Connecticut but his putter was still cold and his driving erratic as he managed to complete just 14 holes before play was suspended in the opening round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands.

Poor putting was his undoing in last week’s US Open at Congressional, where he finished 45th on the leaderboard and 61st with the blade.

Unusually, Harrington failed to break the 30-putt barrier in any of his four rounds last week - his figures weere 30, 31, 33, 31 - and there was little improvement on a shortened opening day in Cromwell, where less than four hours play was possible before storms and soggy conditions forced play to be suspended for the day.

Harrington was one-over par and tied for 54th when he hit his tee shot onto the sixth fairway. And he will have to wait until play resumes at 7am local time today before he hits his second shot on the 574-yard, par-five.

He began on the back nine with five successive pars, missing an eight footer for birdie at the par-five 13th before holing a 21 footer for par at the next after a bunkered approach.

It was one of just two significant putts he holed all morning and he couldn’t rely on the blade to save him when he hit a couple of errant tee shots towards the end of his opening nine.

At the 15th, he pushed his tee shot way right of the fairway and hacked out into a bunker before missing from nine feet for par.

A 15-foot birdie chance slipped by at the next before he drove into the water at the 17th and two putted from 35 feet for his bogey to slip to two-over par.

After missing an 11-footer for birdie at the 18th, Harrington missed from 15 feet for birdie at the second and 18 feet at the third before holing a five and a half footer to save par at the fourth and remain at two over.

His luck appeared to have changed at the par-three fifth, where he hit a 203-yard approach to 14 feet and rolled in his first birdie putt of the day.

But play was suspended as he played the sixth, leaving Michael Bradley at the head of affairs on six under par with two holes of his round remaining.

According to agency reports, the course will be sodden when Harrington returns to complete his round today:

“The course is unplayable,” Bradley said. “There’s a lot of water. It’s going to be a little wet (on Friday) but it’s two holes and I’m done.”

Fiji’s Vijay Singh, Swede Fredrik Jacobson and Andres Romero of Argentina are alongside American quartet Chris Couch, Bryce Molder, John Rollins and Bo van Pelt in the group one shot back at five under.

 

Kris Blanks’ two-under-par 68 was the best of the handful of completed rounds.