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ILE-BIZARD, Que. - Brad Fritsch is not the most animated player on a golf course.
But the Rideau View Golf Club member and PGA Tour regular was fired up during the second round of the RBC Canadian Open Friday as he put on a desperate push to make the cut.
A stroke above the trunk-slamming line on his last hole of the day, Fritsch pulled off a dazzling birdie. He pumped the air with his fist, plucked the ball out of the hole and threw it into the grandstands on the 18th hole at the Royal Montreal Golf Club as his 30-foot putt found the cup to put him right on the cutline.
That birdie on 18 earned him a 2-under par 70 and a two-round total of even-par 140, good to make the cut on the number and earn the right to play Saturday and Sunday. Fritsch wound up tied for 63rd as 73 players (low 70 and ties) advanced to the weekend.
"That was big," said the 36-year-old of the double-breaking putt. "You know what it means, potentially. That was as animated as I get. It was from long distance and it was exciting."
Getting a chance to play in his national open on the weekend is big for any Canadian, but Fritsch also needs the paycheque that comes with making the cut. He's currently 168th on the earnings list with the top 125 earning their playing privileges for next year.
Fritsch has at least two more PGA Tour starts this season, next week at the Barracuda Championship, an opposite field event in Reno, Nev., with the WGC Bridgestone Invitational happening in Akron, Ohio.
Fritsch will also play the Wyndham Championship Aug. 14-17, a tournament some of the top players will skip because it's their last chance for a break before the FedEx Cup playoffs start followed by the Ryder Cup this year.
If he can't crack the top 125, he'll play again in the four-tournament Web.com Tour finals Aug.-Sept. to try and earn his PGA Tour card, as he did last year.
"I've got plenty of golf left this year," said Fritsch after signing his card and visiting with friends and family and getting set to wait out the afternoon draw and see if his score would hold up. "I hope some of it is this weekend."
He got his wish.
Making the turn on the outside looking in at even for the day and 2-over par for the tournament, Fritsch birdied the par-5 12th (two putt from 53 feet) and par-3 13th holes (from nine feet on the 231-yard three shotter) to get back in the mix. A wayward tee shot on the 15th hole - which has one of the widest fairways going - led to a pitchout and a bogey and things weren't looking so good.
After just missing a 13-foot birdie putt on 17, Fritsch drove into the right rough on 18. He opened the face of a 6-iron and played a great shot from 166 yards to the uphill green, setting up his dramatic putt.
"I did such a good job of making cuts last year," said Fritsch, "but it seems like I've just been on the wrong side of it this year. I need something extra to happen, an additional break or one more putt."
He got that putt on 18, a double breaker that swung a cup to the left and then a cup to the right.
"I told him to imagine what it would do," said caddie Jeff Scott. "It was pretty amazing."
As Fritsch went into the trailer to sign his card, Scott started consulting a nearby laptop set up for players to monitor the moving target that is the cutline.
"T69 now," he said. "Trend, trend!"
Aided by a gusty wind that kept the afternoon draw from going low, it trended the right way.