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All eyes on Nick Taylor at RBC Canadian Open



All eyes on Nick Taylor at RBC Canadian Open

In June of 2023, Nick Taylor put his title into the historical past books by sinking a 72-foot eagle putt on the fourth playoff gap on the Oakdale Golf & Nation Membership.  By doing so, he grew to become the primary Canadian to win Canada’s Nationwide Open since Pat Fletcher achieved the feat again in 1954.

Because the 2024 version of the RBC Canadian Open will get underway, all eyes will likely be on the 36-year-old from Abbotsford, British Columbia as he units out to defend his title on Canadian soil.

The defending champion finds himself a part of a marquee trio for the opening two rounds, which incorporates 2019 and 2022 event champion, Rory McIlroy, and Taylor Pendrith – who grew to become the latest Canadian to win on the PGA TOUR after capturing the CJ Cup Byron Nelson originally of the month.

“It’s an enormous occasion and to see Nick win it final yr was unbelievable; it was tremendous inspiring,” stated Pendrith at his pre-tournament presser. “It was wonderful to see him do it and finish the drought in that style. I nonetheless get goose bumps watching the video.”

“It’s a significant for us. It’s the one time we get to be right here in our residence nation and play in entrance of the house followers, so it’s an enormous deal for the gamers and the spectators and the entire nation,” he added.

McIlroy says he feels proper at residence competing in entrance of the Canadian golf followers. The 2-time event champion recollects his first victory on Canadian soil again in 2019.

“The place was buzzing. The Raptors have been about to win an NBA championship. Yeah, it was my first Canadian Open and I used to be blown away by simply the passion that the followers have and it was such a terrific ambiance to to play in,” recalled McIlroy, who attended recreation two of the 2019 NBA finals that includes the Toronto Raptors and the Golden State Warriors.

The previous world number one from Eire admits that whereas he hasn’t been to a reside hockey recreation, he believes the Canadian golf followers convey that hockey power to the golf course.

“Full disclosure right here, and this isn’t most likely a great factor to say in Canada, however I’ve by no means been to a hockey recreation, however I might think about that that’s kind of what it looks like. It feels such as you’re taking part in in that kind of hockey setting, particularly with the Rink gap,” stated McIlroy.

“I’m very, very lucky that I really feel like I get good help most locations that we go play but it surely’s only for no matter purpose it’s just a bit bit additional right here in Canada.”

Whereas Pendrith and McIlroy will obtain loads of help, the person who would be the centre of consideration as play will get underway is the defending champion, who ended Canada’s 69 yr drought final June.

To commemorate Taylor’s historic achievement, Golf Canada has created a restricted version Nick Taylor bobblehead which is able to is offered on the market with proceeds going to help the First Tee program.

Taylor says he’s had the prospect to replay his clutch 72-foot eagle putt time and again – however watching it by no means will get outdated.

“I’ve seen the replay sufficient now that I form of have that visible virtually now as an alternative of my very own notion. Yeah, I’ve seen so many angles now, it’s actually cool to see totally different individuals’s response. I really feel when my spouse and I see it we discover a totally different particular person to have a look at and see how they reacted which is fairly enjoyable,” he famous.

Taylor says his victory final June in Canada has given him extra confidence which carried over to his win on the TPC Scottsdale in early February.

“It’s taken work to have the ability to get in that psychological state of specializing in that current second. After I look again on the Canadian Open, I take confidence from that which solely helped me once I was at Phoenix,” he stated.

Because the defending champion and the primary Canadian to win our Canada’s Nationwide Open in 69 years, it’s comprehensible that every one eyes will likely be on Taylor as play will get underway. However it’s typically stated, strain is a privilege, and mature and assured 36-year-old seems poised and wanting to embrace the problem.

“The most important change I might say since final yr is clearly being acknowledged extra in context of a golf course. Now, particularly on the Canadian Open – so yeah, it’s a whole lot of footage and signatures,” stated Taylor.

“I feel our crowds are going to be fairly large the subsequent couple of days with Rory – who all the time has that following, and taking part in with Pendy. So, I’m trying ahead to that quite a bit.”

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