103rd U.S. Open/June 12-15, 2003
Olympia Fields CC North Course, Olympia Fields, Ill.
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|Jim Furyk, United States||67||-||66||-||67||-||72||—||272|
|Stephen Leaney, Australia||67||-||68||-||68||-||72||—||275|
|Kenny Perry, United States||72||-||71||-||69||-||67||—||279|
|Mike Weir, Canada||73||-||67||-||68||-||71||—||279|
When others predicted Jim Furyk would have to change his funky, loopy, homegrown golf swing, the Pennsylvania native was confident it would hold up under the most pressure-filled situations.
And at Olympia Fields, he was correct.
After posting three stress-free rounds in the 60s to grab a lead, Fuyrk finished off his only national-open triumph doing what he does best — grinding out tough pars under swirling final-round conditions.
Despite a three-putt bogey on the finishing hole, Furyk tied the U.S. Open scoring record of 272, set by Jack Nicklaus in 1980 at Baltusrol Golf Club, and later matched by Lee Janzen (1993 at Baltusrol) and Tiger Woods (2000 at Pebble Beach).
“This week was my week,” Furyk told reporters afterward. “Today was my day.”
It was very clear early Sunday this would be a two-man race between Furyk, the overnight leader by three shots, and Australia’s Stephen Leaney, who was a major championship contender for the first time.
But Leaney bogeyed two of the first three holes and never really had any steam behind him to make a serious run at Furyk, who made 15-footers at the second and fifth holes for par to maintain his advantage.
“Thought I had a very big chance today,” Leaney said.
Furyk’s 3-foot birdie putt at No. 14 gave him a four-stroke lead, leaving the field firmly in his rear-view mirror.
This was also an emotional U.S. Open for Tom Watson, who shared the first-round lead with an opening 65.
Watson’s longtime caddie Bruce Edwards, who was battling ALS, announced it would be his final U.S. Open on the bag. Edwards died 10 months later at age 49.