Imagine Golf Blogs

Focus On: Matt Kuchar

Winner of the 2010 PGA Tour money list

Posted Oct 21, 2011 by Chris White

Matt Kucher is a prime example of an up and down and back again career

Born in Winter Park, Florida, Matthew Gregory Kuchar is currently ranked ninth in the world, and started his 2011 season with three consecutive top-10 finishes, but a major title still remains on his to do list.

Kuchar won the 1997 US Amateur title before turning professional in 2000, with his first PGA Tour title coming two years later at the Honda Classic. However, his career took a turn for the worst soon after, culminating in a place on the Nationwide Tour for 2006 after failing to earn enough money to qualify for a place on the PGA. He finished tenth overall to earn back his Tour card, and hasn’t relinquished that, improving every year.

Seven years after securing his first professional title, Kuchar won the 2009 Fall Series at the Turning Stone Resort Championship in a playoff against Vaughn Taylor.

He made the 2010 US Ryder Cup team by finishing eighth in the qualification list, taking the final automatic position in the team. This achievement was made even more impressive by the fact that he hadn’t won an event in 2010, but he did lead the list of PGA Tour top-ten finishes for the year. That winless run was ended at The Barclays in New Jersey, when Kuchar defeated Martin Laird on the first playoff hole.

He was then awarded the Vardon Trophy in 2010 for the lowest scoring average and the PGA Tour’s Arnold Palmer Award for leading the money list for the season.

In 2011, he followed up three consecutive top-10 finishes by reaching the semi finals of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship, eventually being beaten by Luke Donald, who went on to win the tournament and become world number one. Kuchar finished third overall by beating Bubba Watson in the 3rd/4th playoff.

His eighth top-10 finish came at The Memorial Tournament in June, finishing tied for second behind Steve Stricker, which moved him up to sixth in the world rankings, a career high. Since then, he has dropped to his current position of ninth place with a major still eluding him.

His best major finish came at the 2010 US Open, where he tied for sixth place, but his other performances need some work if he’s to establish himself as a true great of the game. He has a best finish of equal tenth in the PGA Championship, coming in 2010, and tied for 21st at the 1998 Masters. Kuchar’s best finish at The Open Championship is tied or 27th in 2010 – with his major performances showing why he moved into the top ten in 2010.

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