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anthony kim liv golf comeback

A birdie, bogeys, and a shank: Breaking down Anthony Kim’s comeback

Anthony Kim found the fairway with his first LIV Golf shot on the 18th hole in Saudi Arabia, but how did his round progress from there?

 

Did you set your alarms? Golf fans across the world scrambled for their dressing gowns and kettles to enjoy Anthony Kim‘s LIV Golf debut on Friday.

However, the 38-year-old struggled in his first competitive start in 12 years at LIV Golf Jeddah, carding 6-over-par to finish in last place on day one of three.

Just over 5,000 people watched Kim find the fairway with his opening tee shot at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club on LIV Golf’s YouTube channel.

But after a topped second shot, the American made his first bogey of the day which would foreshadow what was to come in the Saudi Arabian sun.

Starting on the par-5 18th hole in the shotgun start format, Kim made four bogeys in his first nine holes with just one birdie to shout about.

He created a viral moment, for the wrong reasons, on the par-4 5th hole when he shanked his approach shot sideways from the semi-rough, leading to a bogey.

He added more bogeys on 9, 12 and 15 to card a 76 while playing with former Open champion Cameron Smith and former US Open champion Graeme McDowell.

Kim was one of eight players to shoot over par from the 54-man field and he currently sits 14 shots behind Jon Rahm and Adrian Meronk with 36 holes to play.

Prior to Kim’s much anticipated LIV Golf debut, fans might have tempered their expectations given his last professional start came at the 2012 Wells Fargo Championship.

He won three times on the PGA Tour between 2008 and 2010 before injuries derailed his career. Kim has largely spent the last decade away from public life with no professional golf activity to speak of.

Anthony Kim LIV Golf comeback arrives after going into ‘dark hole’

It was first touted by Golf.com in January that Kim could be making a sensational return to the sport with either LIV Golf or the PGA Tour.

The Saudi-funded league announced their latest acquisition before the start of the tournament and he will play as a wildcard for the rest of the season.

LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman joined the first-round broadcast booth to discuss Kim’s return and how his comeback was put in the pipeline:

“It really started a couple of years ago to be honest with you. We reached out to AK early on, it wasn’t the right time for him but I wanted him to know we had an interest in reigniting him and bringing his passion and belief in the game of golf back out,” he said.

“To get to the point where we’re at, it was probably a very emotional passion for me to be able to pull him back into the game because very few people know what it’s like to be at the upper level like he was, like he was an incredible player, just before the end of my career.

anthony kim liv golf comeback

ALSO: Who is Anthony Kim?

“I watched him and I saw this talent and to see him fall into this dark hole and then about a year ago, to clean himself up, get himself back, injuries whatever it is, and to see where he is today and to walk with him and to be with him in the last month a half, six weeks to go through this process.

“He didn’t want an agent, he wanted to do it all himself. He wanted to speak to me, he wanted to speak to one other person, he just wanted to deal with his thing because he’s been reinvigorated in his life through his wife Emily and daughter Bella and it’s brought something back to him.

“I was walking with Emily down the first hole and I said what was it that really got him back and he said the game of golf. I said the game of golf is one thing, hitting the ball, but it’s the emotion that allowed him to go, ‘Oh I’m good at this, golf is a safe haven, golf is going to give me something else’.

“What that is is the happiness that he hasn’t been in for the last 12 years until he met Emily.”

March 1 2024 marked the return of an old fan favourite! But did you make of the Anthony Kim shank, and the Anthony Kim LIV Golf comeback in general? Tell us on X/Twitter!

NOW READ: What clubs does Anthony Kim use?

NOW READ: Where and when will Anthony Kim play next?

Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spent time with some of the biggest names in the sport.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

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