Missing the cut in Phoenix was very disappointing - naturally missing any cut is a disappointment but I have to say that missing this one was a little worse for a couple of reasons - firstly, I three putted the last to miss by a shot and secondly, playing on the weekend provides a great buzz, with the sixteenth hole as close as any golfer will ever get to a soccer or rugby match atmosphere.
Similar to Abu Dhabi, I didn't play badly but I am just not making enough birdies; in my first round I only made one birdie and then four in the second. On this course and in the conditions we were playing in that is not great; five in a round would be ok, but not over two rounds. I stayed and did some practice on Saturday, mainly on my wedge play as it hasn't been great. I just haven't been hitting my wedges close enough and I got a lot of good work done - I wasn't really working on my swing as I am very happy with it - the majority of work was on my wedges and short game. Overall I am happy with my game, I just need to make more birdies and to do this I need to hit it closer when I get the chance. So when I have a short club in my hands I need to be giving myself decent chances for birdie.
I travelled to Pebble Beach on Sunday and watched the Super Bowl from there. I took a break from golf and just took it easy. I am not panicking or worrying about my game, in fact, I am feeling good about it. I just need to be a bit more aggressive and take the risk of making a bogey in order to make more birdies.
I'm back in Arizona for the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Last year was my first time here and I loved the week, it's really a fun event. It feels like a mixture of a golf tournament and a football match. The crowds are amazing, for the week here they are expecting over 500,000 people, so as you can imagine in good weather it is just one big party. The most famous hole here is the 16th, a par three that is enclosed like a football stadium. There are around 20,000 people watching this hole and they are cheering and roaring; no matter who you are it is nerve racking standing over your tee shot.
Last year I finished in a tie for 10th but it really should have been better as I was in the last group on Sunday. This along with the tournament itself is the reason I am back this year. I liked the course and the conditions - it's hard not to like a course that is in perfect condition!
I got here on Sunday evening so that I would be able to do some work with the Wilson guys. It's my first week of the season in the States and I wanted to get my clubs checked and try a few new ones, so it was easier to come in early and make sure that I had time to do it on Monday.
I got all my work done on my clubs in the morning, so in the afternoon I played a few holes and hit some wedges. On Tuesday I played nine holes and then had some things to do for the tournament. Bones invited myself and Ronan to Whisper Rock for lunch and to use the practice facilities as he is a member there. It is a great place - we had a great lunch and then spent a couple of hours practising. On Wednesday, I got some practice done before the pro-am so that when I was finished I could take it easy.
I am happy with how I am playing. In practice there hasn't been anything causing any problems. I would like to have a bit more speed in my swing but then I would always like that. I am looking forward to playing this week as it is perfect conditions for golf, warm and not much wind. I need to win this week or next in order to have a chance of getting into the WGC Accenture Matchplay so I need a big two weeks. I'm not getting too caught up in thinking about it, I am doing my normal thing and if it works out, well and good, but if not then I will have a week off.
All in all I am in good form, I have had a nice few days here in Phoenix and looking forward to having a good week.