By Alex Myers
With tears of relief and joy in his eyes, Jarrod Lyle found the left rough on his opening tee shot at the Australian Masters. Happy to just hear his name announced at a tournament again, the cancer survivor couldn't have cared less where his golf ball ended up.
The Golf Channel put together a nice three-minute video of commentary leading up to Lyle's return and the scene as he took his first swing in competition in more than 20 months. Go to the 1:15 mark if you just want to watch Thursday's action:
Lyle managed a more-than-respectable 1-over 72 in his first round back. After Day 1, the 32-year-old Aussie, who is recovering from his second bout with myeloid leukemia, is T-38 among the 120-man field.
"Just walking to that first tee and teeing the ball up and trying to hit it - that's probably going to be the hardest thing," Lyle said Tuesday at Royal Melbourne.
"It's just going to let a whole lot of stuff out. Hopefully when that ball flies I can just get on to playing golf and put everything behind me and just get back to the golfer that I am."
That golfer was a two-time Web.com Tour winner and someone poised to be a regular on the PGA Tour. In his second-to-last event before being diagnosed, he had his best-ever finish, a T-4 at the Northern Trust Open. Although you probably don't remember that, you might recall his fantastic reaction to making an ace at TPC Scottsdale's famed 16th hole at the 2011 Waste Management Phoenix Open. Here's hoping we see more of this from Lyle going forward: