Once again it was great to arrive at the course on a Sunday with a decent show at finishing high up the leader board. As I have already said this week, the PGA, Royal Pines, RACV and the other sponsors have done such an amazing job this week and that job has made this week such an awesome thing to be a part of.
As a professional golfer there is nothing better than warming up in front of big crowds and standing on that first tee with the crowds 5 and 6 deep watching that first shot of the day. The adrenaline and nerves certainly let you know you are alive on that first tee shot. Trying to calm yourself down is a skill that I haven't mastered yet and to be honest I am not sure if I will ever master it.....but I do love it!!
My day was unfortunately over effectively in the first 45 mins of my round. What a bad time for my whole game to desert me, my driving, iron play, chipping and putting all seemed to be replaced by that of a c grader as I managed to drop 6 shots in the first 4 holes with nothing going right and everything going wrong.
To be honest, at that point I have never been more deflated or disappointed on a golf course before. 45mins earlier I was excited about what the day had in store and now my day was done, top ten in tatters and even more importantly I was wondering where a good shot of any kind would come from. I will openly say that my emotions didn't change from that point for the rest of the day, I simply tried to find a way, one shot at a time to rebuild all the good work I have done throughout the week.
Fortunately my ability to gather the info for the shot and execute the shot I have chosen was still there, and all I could do was trust that it would return some quality shots again. It did return and if I was able to make a few more of the chances that I gave myself, I may well have finished better than the 4 over I did. Still, given the circumstance I found myself in after 4 holes, to shoot 2 under the last 14 holes was a positive way to finish the week. As I arrived at the last, the last hole Sunday, I hit a great drive and had 161m to the flag. From the fairway you could see the big grandstand was full as well as the other stands around the green. This is a fun part of what I do, I know many of you wouldn't love hundreds watching you hit into the green but I really enjoyed it. I hit a great 7 iron and it never left the flag, pitching on the green and rolling up to 3 feet from the pin. The crowd gave a huge roar, one that will get me back, that's for sure!!
I think the highlight for the week, and there were many, was after I putted out on the 18th. I looked around, trying to soak it up and I saw a young man in a wheelchair behind the bunker. After shaking hands with my playing partner and caddies I went around the bunker to see him. I said hi and thanks for coming out to watch the golf and signed my glove and cap and gave them to him. He was not only disabled physically but was also mentally disabled in some way. He smiled though and when I asked him for a handshake he immediately raised his hand up to me. Despite the disappointment of my day this moment meant a lot to me and also to him and his dad who was with him. A good reminder that at the end of the day I am just playing golf and there are far more important things out there in life to be good at too.
So that's it for another week of blogging but the good news is that the Aussie Masters week starts tomorrow. It is at the famous Royal Melbourne course and as I have never been there before I am so looking forward to it. It is great to be heading there on the back of two really solid weeks and with the confidence, despite taking a hit
Catch up with everything from the tour as I let you know about the course, conditions and my thoughts and feelings on how I am playing.....also some cool stories from the tour!!