European Tour

Typhoon, visa flap send Kuchar's schedule into rough

2017-10-24 19:12
Matt Kuchar (Getty)

Shanghai - The fall schedule didn't work out the way Matt Kuchar imagined.

Kuchar signed up for three straight tournaments overseas, starting with a working vacation with his family in Japan for the Bridgestone Open, followed by the HSBC Champions and then the Turkish Airlines Open.

He made it through two rounds of the Bridgestone Open before he evacuated ahead of Typhoon Lan.

He withdrew from the Turkish Airlines Open when relations between the US and Turkey reached a point that both countries suspended non-immigrant visa services for travel between the two countries.

"It looked like things were getting to a point where it was better not to go," Kuchar said.

"I did some homework with a US senator friend of mine who checked with the State Department. When the US stops issuing visas, there's an issue."

Kuchar played in Turkey five years ago as part of an exhibition that included Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy.

His strongest memory was figuring out to celebrate his son Cameron's birthday.

"We didn't know what to do for a 5-year-old in Turkey, so everyone got in bathrobes in our room and turned it into a Turkish bath party," he said.

In Japan, Kuchar arrived early with his wife and two sons, took the bullet train, went to a Sumo wrestling match and toured a Ninja training studio, which turned out great.

However the weather turned for the worse, and they struggled to get in two rounds on Friday and Saturday as the typhoon approached.

"It was my first time to the Bridgestone Open. I was excited to be there. They've been a great sponsor for me," Kuchar said.

"I had to evacuate because of a typhoon. I've had to evacuate twice in the last two years from Georgia (from hurricanes). It was strange. But I was able to get out safely, arrive here early and the wife and kids headed home."

So the HSBC Champions will be his only four-round tournament.

"It wasn't quite what I was planning for the fall," he said.

Kuchar will take the next month off and then end his year at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas and the Greg Norman's QBE Shootout in Florida.

Read more on:    european tour  |  matt kuchar  |  golf


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