Having endured two brain surgeries over the last two years, J.B. Holmes, one of the PGA’s longest hitters, was able to gut-out a courageous victory at the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow in Charlotte. For his third PGA victory, Holmes edged out red hot Jim Furyk, who had posted a 65 earlier in the day, by one stroke on Sunday.
Holmes sunk a three foot bogey putt and finished with a one-under 71 in an emotional finish that set the beleaguered golfer up to contend in next week’s lucrative Players Championship and allows him to vie for the PGA championship at Valhalla in August. The Players Championship will be sans Tiger Woods, increasing all tournament qualifiers’ chances to win and Valhalla will give Holmes a nice advantage, given that it is located in his home state of Kentucky.
According to the Sporting News, in 2011 it was discovered that Holmes suffered from Chiara malformations characterized by structural defects in the cerebellum. Holmes’ first surgery was complicated by his allergic reaction to an adhesive on the titanium plate inserted into his skull. Consequently, one month later Holmes was back in the hospital for another brain surgery.
CNN reported that last year the 32-year old Holmes had broken his ankle in a rollerblading accident. What’s more in an effort to get ready for his re-entry into competition, Holmes injured his left elbow hitting too many balls at the driving range forcing yet another surgery.