There are times when sports—no matter how big the game or tournament—must take a backseat to family.
Saturday was one of those times for golf star Hunter Mahan. According to National Post columnist Scott Stinson via Twitter on Saturday, Mahan withdrew from the RBC Canadian Open shortly after his wife went into labor:
WOW. Hunter Mahan has withdrawn from the @RBCCanadianOpen because his wife went into labour. He was LEADING.— Scott Stinson (@scott_stinson) July 27, 2013
UPDATE: Sunday, July 28, at 12:45 p.m. ET by Brandon Galvin
Hunter Mahan took to Twitter this afternoon to announce the birth of his daughter and thank fans for their support:
What a whirlwind of a day, but I'm happy to announce the birth of my daughter Zoe Olivia Mahan born at 3:26 am. Thanks for all the support!— Hunter Mahan (@HunterMahan) July 28, 2013
Both Baby and Mom are doing great. Thanks to all to my sponsors who appreciate what's important in life and all my fans for being Awesome!— Hunter Mahan (@HunterMahan) July 28, 2013
---End of update---
Mahan had this to say about this crazy situation (via Toronto Sun reporter Steve Keating):
"I received exciting news a short time ago that my wife Kandi has gone into labor with our first child," said Mahan in a statement. "As a result, I have withdrawn from the Canadian Open to return to Dallas.
"Kandi and I are thrilled about this addition to the Mahan family and we look forward to returning to the Canadian Open in the coming years."
What makes this story even more unbelievable is the fact that the 31-year-old was leading the tournament by two strokes through two rounds of play, having shot 13-under through the first 36 holes.
There's no doubt Mahan made the right decision to ditch his golf clubs for a set of scrubs. After all, there will be plenty of tournaments for him to contend for in the future. Unlike competing at the RBC Canadian Open or even a major, the birth of a child is a one-time deal.
Surely golf fans and tournament officials will understand.
What do you make of Hunter Mahan's decision?
Mahan has five career victories on the PGA Tour, recording his last win at the Shell Houston Open in April 2012. He recently earned his best-ever finish at a major in June 2013, finishing tied for fourth at the U.S. Open at Merion.
There's no way of knowing whether Mahan would have gone on to win, but he had done everything to put himself in position to do so, that's for sure. He followed up a five-under 67 on Thursday with an impressive eight-under 64 on Friday to take sole possession of the tournament lead heading into the weekend.
American Dustin Johnson who shot a nine-under 63 in Saturday's third round, currently leads after getting into the clubhouse at 11-under for the tournament.
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