McDowell glad to be back after frustrating wrist injury

Graeme McDowell is just outside the leading 20 in the US PGA Tour's Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

Graeme McDowell at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am.   -  AFP

Graeme McDowell, who won the 2010 US Open at Pebble Beach, was delighted to be competing at the Northern California course this week after a left wrist injury slowed his start to the year.

The 39-year-old from Northern Ireland added a one-under par 70 at the Monterey Peninsula course to Thursday's four-under 68 at Pebble Beach to be just outside the leading 20 in the US PGA Tour's Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

Thursday's first round marked the first time McDowell had played 18 holes since the third-last day of 2018.

He first thought his sore left wrist was just a minor pre-season strain, but when the pain continued he arranged for a scan that revealed a bruised lunate bone.

“I had the scan right before I was due to go to Palm Springs and they told me not to play, so I took that week off and tried to play again right before Torrey Pines and they didn't like it, so I pulled out right before Torrey,” said McDowell, who lost his PGA Tour card at the end of last season and is now relying on sponsor invitations. “I was starting to get very frustrated.

“It was not the start to a new season I wanted but like I say, I am just extremely happy to be on the golf course and excited to hit some good looking shots, as well.”