Trevor Immelman felt good about his game during each of his first two rounds this weekend at Harbour Town Golf Links. The results just weren't there around the greens for the two-time PGA Tour winner.
But a simple 5-foot missed putt for par by Jesper Parnevik at the end of the second round on Saturday morning changed everything for the 33-year-old Immelman, who was one of 21 golfers who survived the 2-over cut at the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing.
"It was nice because I felt like I was playing well," said Immelman, who rallied back in Saturday's third round with a 5-under 66. "I just needed to get a little something going. I managed to do that on the back nine today.
"It's obviously a relief, especially if you feel like you've got a good round in you."
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Parnevik headed to the 18th green Saturday morning after play was halted Friday evening due to weather. Had he managed a par on that final hole, the Jupiter, Fla., resident would have been one of 70 golfers at 1-over or better.
Instead, his bogey moved 91 players into the third round, which tied for the most ever on the PGA Tour with the Travelers Championship in 1981. By comparison, 93 golfers participated in last week's Masters.
"........by the skin of my teeth," Immelman tweeted Saturday morning.
The expanded field for the third round forced the RBC Heritage to mandate a secondary cut before the final 18 holes, as all low 70 players plus ties made it to the last day. Seventy golfers in all will head to the course for today's fourth round.
"We're seeing this every week now," Immelman said. "Guys are just getting better and better and better and the technology is getting better. The way guys train, practice and prepare is getting better. The level of play has just gotten better."
Brandt Snedeker, the winner here in 2011, was one of a handful of beneficiaries from the 2-over cut line before an even-par-71 kept him in the field for Sunday. Zach Johnson, the runner-up here a year ago, also survived.
Whether that means drinks are on the house for Parnevik remains to be seen.
"There's been a few of those jokes," Immelman said, laughing. "I'll have to give him the nod when I see him."
The field isn't the only thing that's crowded, though. Twelve golfers are within five strokes of leader Charley Hoffman entering today after 42 golfers came into the weekend within four shots of the lead.
In addition, 49 golfers are currently under par after only 23 players finished there a year ago when Carl Pettersson took home the trophy.
"It just goes to show the level play," Immelman said. "I've been saying this for quite awhile. The standard of play has gotten so good over the last few years. What I mean by that is the depth. There's just not many shots that separate the leader and the guys who are making the cut anymore."
" ... It just goes to show you how good everybody is getting."