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Sabbatini's low round isn't quite enough to reach playoff

As the regulation portion of the Wells Fargo Championship wound down Sunday at Quail Hollow Club, Rory Sabbatini had nowhere to go but the putting green.

Sabbatini's 7-under 65 - the low round of the day - had brought him to within one shot of Lucas Glover, who was leading the tournament by himself at the time. Glover, though, was still on the course, and with him still in contention, Sabbatini had to wait to see how Glover would finish.

Sabbatini was eight shots off the lead when he teed off at 12:35 p.m. - an hour earlier than Glover. He had a nearly flawless round - seven birdies, no bogeys - but it was the birdie putt he didn't make that haunted him while he waited for Glover.

A 22-foot putt for birdie on No.18 no doubt was on Sabbatini's mind as he hit a few practice putts during his hour-long wait for Glover.

Sabbatini's putt came up about 2 inches short, and so did his hopes of joining Glover and Jonathan Byrd in a playoff after they both made clutch putts of their own on No.18.

But Sabbatini - who eventually finished third - was under no illusions about how his day might end while he was waiting.

"When that putt stopped short on 18, I thought that might not quite be enough," Sabbatini said.

He has long been one of the PGA Tour's more polarizing figures.

He has publicly criticized players for slow play, feuded with Tiger Woods and, last week at the Zurich Open in New Orleans, reportedly got into a profanity-laced argument with player Sean O'Hair.

In another incident this season, Sabbatini reportedly spoke harshly to a teenage volunteer who was helping find his ball at the Northern Trust Open in Los Angeles.

Sabbatini was talking about none of that this week at Quail Hollow. In fact, a PGA Tour official instructed reporters not to ask Sabbatini about "off-course" issues on Sunday.

But, according The Associated Press, Sabbatini could face suspension for the New Orleans incident with O'Hair, although that apparently hasn't happened (the PGA doesn't announce suspensions).

Sabbatini has been playing well, winning the Honda Classic and adding a fifth-place finish at the Mayokoba Golf Classic to his third-place finish at Quail Hollow.

It was Sabbatini's best finish at Quail Hollow since 2007, when he tied for third. He's also missed the cut in Charlotte three times and finished 40th or worse three times.

"I've had some mixed results at this course," said Sabbatini, who is from South Africa and played collegiately at Arizona. "But if I had realized coming into today that I would have had such a successful day, I probably would have relaxed out there."

After Sabbatini finished his round, he knew there was nothing to do but wait - and hit a few practice putts.

"I'll hang around and keep my eye on what's going on," he said.

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