HOYLAKE, England — Tom Kim arrived on the apply inexperienced Sunday morning at Royal Liverpool with a burst of optimistic vitality.
He had simply had the solid faraway from his injured proper ankle, and it was, in his phrases, “truly so much higher.”
For the primary time since Thursday, taking part within the Open Championship might truly be much less painful than the day earlier than.
You see, Kim had suffered the sort of damage days earlier that the majority golfers would not hassle persevering with to compete with. He had emerged from his rental house in Hoylake in “half a meter of mud” and slipped. As her weight fell on her proper ankle, her foot ‘jumped out’, leading to what docs later decided was a grade 1 tear in her ankle.
He awakened Friday morning at three o’clock earlier than the match and was hovering across the lower line. Extra problematic, nevertheless, was his ankle, which had swollen and was barely in a position to bear weight.
“I used to be considering of retiring after my second spherical and the third spherical,” he stated, pausing for a second with a touch of a smile.
“However I am fairly glad I did not.”
Glad for a number of causes. For one, his ankle, after a number of days of intensive icing, casting, and rehab, had truly improved dramatically from the earlier days. Then again, he performed exceptionally nicely, his seven-under tally resulting in the 21-year-old’s career-best main consequence.
Sure, Kim fired the day’s low spherical on Sunday regardless of appalling circumstances at Royal Liverpool, a 4 underneath 67 amplified by the truth that not like the opposite 76 gamers on the weekend, Kim’s efficiency got here with concern that even one misstep may very well be sufficient to make issues worse.
“Particularly if it is moist. You might slip very simply,” he stated. “The very last thing I would like proper now’s one other twist or one other slip. Clearly being a bit chilly, in the event you’re not heat sufficient it might – it tends to be a bit extra painful.
When the mud settled on Sunday, Kim had pushed himself right into a tie for second place – tied with a bunch of gamers together with defending Masters champion Jon Rahm. It was a superb effort, one of many most interesting of Kim’s younger profession, that includes 4 birdies and an eagle. That additionally virtually did not occur.
“No (I wasn’t stunned),” he stated of his sport. “However on the similar time, (I used to be) a bit due to the way in which my foot felt.”
Kim leaves the Open weekend not solely with one of many strongest finalists in current reminiscence, but additionally as the primary 21-year-old since Rory McIlroy to complete within the prime 10 at back-to-back majors. It has been an odd 12 months for Kim, who burst onto the scene final fall however took a step again because the season progressed. On the Open, nevertheless, he ended the key season on a particular excessive observe…and a swollen ankle.
Hoping that his subsequent look comes on higher footing.