Life is a lot easier when you play badly and then all of a sudden you get in contention and win one. No one gets on your back. When you finish runner-up seven times, everyone is asking, 'Why aren't you winning?' It's much more fun when you jump into a win out of the blue. It's a much tougher game when you play consistently well.

The Players Championship

Entry Date:
May 6, 2010

The Players Championship - Review
I am back home after missing the cut at the Players. I went into the week really looking forward to the tournament as I had played so well on the Sunday of Quail Hollow. However I wasn't able to bring that form into the tournament; its not that I played poorly, I just played adequately. The problem was that I didn't putt very well; my game was fine to get me around the course in a few under par but when you are not converting the chances it makes scoring very difficult. When I look back on my rounds I could easily have made the cut - I missed a lot of chances in both rounds and as a result I was on the back foot from early on in the second round. The fact that the scoring was very good didn't help either as it made every putt I missed feel worse.

Even though I missed the cut I am not worried about my game - the week in Quail Hollow helped me clear a few things up in my head. I am disappointed to have missed the cut as it is never a good feeling when you are sitting watching the weekend of the tournament at home. However, I am looking forward to a week off to fine tune the few things I got clear in my head. The good thing about it is that I can do it on the course in practice, so I don't have to spend hours on the range. My next tournament is the BMW PGA Championship at Wenthworth next week; I am looking forward to playing it as they have re-laid the greens and made other course changes for the better.

I got home on Sunday morning after a bit of a delay due to the volcanic ash but nothing too major. It did mean that I got to watch the final round at home - I was disappointed for Lee Westwood as he had played so well during the week. However it was a great win by Tim Clark, especially for his first win. Conditions definitely looked tougher on the Sunday than they had been for the first two days, with the greens looking like they had dried out and got a lot firmer. When they get like that it really is a tough golf course.

It has been a while since I played well at Sawgrass and now I have to wait another year. However, it is done with and I am looking forward to my next tournament, which will also be my first event in Europe this year.

Talk to you soon,

Padraig.

The Players Championship - Preview

The Players Championship is a prestigious tournament and one that everyone would like to win. I have had a couple of close calls in it over the years but not for a long time now - my last second place finish here was in 2004 and since then I have struggled in this tournament. For some reason the change of date hasn’t been kind to me in terms of my performances here.

I got here on Sunday night as I needed to do some filming for Wilson on Monday morning. I didn’t do too much else on Monday as I had a long enough week and had put a good bit of practice in last week in Charlotte. The great thing about coming to a course every year is that you don’t feel under any pressure to get out and see it - having played it so many times I am very comfortable on it and how it plays.

I didn’t play any holes on Monday as I was doing some filming for Wilson, after which I did a bit of practice on my long game and then spent a while on my bunker play and my putting. On Tuesday I played nine holes in the morning as there was bad weather forecasted for the afternoon - I played the front nine as I planned to play the back nine on Wednesday so that Ronan could hit tee his shot on the 17th. The weather didn’t come in until nearly 6pm so I was able to do a bit of practice after I played. I also did some work with Bob Rotella - we had a good chat about where I felt I was and spent some time on the old "reliables".

On Tuesday evening I went to Rory’s 21st birthday party, which his caddy, J.P. Fitzgerald, had organised for him. It was good fun and very enjoyable.

I had planned on playing nine holes on Wednesday but I tweaked my neck in the gym on Wednesday morning. I got some treatment on it straight away which helped loosen it up but I didn’t want to risk playing any holes. I hit some shots just to see how it was and then I went out and did some chipping and putting around a few greens so as to get a feel for the speed of the greens. I did walk out to the 17th with Ronan to watch him hits his shot; a glorious duff into the water! I’ll enjoy reminding him of that for the rest of the year.

I got some more treatment on my neck on Wednesday evening and I’ll have more before I go out on Thursday. It is the same thing that I get a few times during the year; it should be fine in the morning and the fact that I have an afternoon tee time means that I have some extra time for it to heal.

I am very happy with my game; I felt that I played my best golf of the year last Sunday. I felt that my weaknesses were actually very strong last week and if anything it was my short game, which is normally my strength, that let me down. I am looking forward to this week as I like the course and feel good about my game. As always I am looking to get myself into contention on Sunday and take it from there.

Talk soon,

Padraig.

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