WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. - Tim Petrovic walked off the course Saturday after shooting a 3-under-par 67, his best round in four years of playing the Greenbrier Classic.
It left him at 6 under for the tournament and tied for 16th heading into today's final round, almost assuring his biggest payday of the PGA Tour season.
About the only thing that might have made it better was if younger brother Stephen was at his side.
The last time out for Tim Petrovic, two weeks ago in the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Conn., marked the return of Stephen as his caddie. Stephen Petrovic served in that role off and on from 1989-2009, and was on the bag for Tim's only PGA Tour win, the 2005 Zurich Classic in New Orleans.
But making that event all the more special, aside from the fact that Stephen, 44, lives in nearby Farmington, Conn., was that it was the first time Stephen had caddied since being diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in January of 2012.
"He made it through four rounds,'' Tim Petrovic said. "That was a victory that week just to get him out there. Just to have guys come up to him and give him a little bump and say, 'Glad to have you out here.' It was good. We put that on the calendar just to kind of get him out there.''
Following his diagnosis, Stephen Petrovic underwent radiation and chemotherapy, and had a stem cell transplant in May of 2012. He's taken as many as 17 oral medications per day and occasional booster shots.
The leukemia is now in remission, although Stephen isn't ready to return to caddying chores on a weekly basis, and wasn't able to make the trip to The Greenbrier resort this week.
"He's got no restrictions from his doctors,'' Tim Petrovic said, "but he's still on 15 meds a day and still feels like crap. So it was tough for him [caddying two weeks ago]. You can tell he hasn't been outside a lot and he didn't have energy like he normally does. Normally, he's 20 yards ahead of me and this time he was 20 yards behind me. His ankles were really swollen when he was out there.
"We're playing it by ear right now. In years past he's done seven, eight, nine tournaments. He doesn't want to come out there every week, so he's going to come out now and then to help me out, which is good. It keeps it kind of fresh. He's a good brother. He's a great brother and a great caddie, too.''
Tim Petrovic, who turns 47 in August, said it means a lot when Stephen walks the course with him.
"I just wanted to have him out there,'' Tim said. "He doesn't even have to caddie. I just want him to come out and walk around, so that was a bonus [last week].