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.

Alfred Dunhill Links Championship

Entry Date:
Oct 4, 2017

It wasn't the week I had hoped for. Missing the cut at one of my favourite tournaments of the year is very disappointing, not only because I missed the cut, but also because JP missed too. All in all, it was a bad week.

What made missing the cut even worse was the way it happened. All I had to do was par my last hole, the ninth at Kingsbarns in the third round. I had hit a very good drive and was 256 yards from the front of the green for my second. I hit my 2 wood but caught it heavy and it didn?t carry the fairway bunkers. I could only hack it out and then took another four shots to get down. I was gutted when I walked off the green. To finish like that was sickening.

That last hole ultimately cost me making the cut but really I hadn?t done enough in the round on Saturday as I was only level par for the day playing the last hole. I hadn't created enough chances to move myself up the leaderboard.

Over the three days I played my best at Carnoustie in the first round, which showed in my score. During the other two days I played okay but just didn't create enough chances - I made a lot of pars but not enough birdies. Looking back on it, my first hole of the week didn't help - I pitched it to four feet for birdie and missed. I didn't let it affect me but had it gone in you are buzzing straight away and more often than not you kick on.

It was a disappointing week, especially as I went there feeling good. I'm off to Italy now for the Italian Open, one of the Rolex Series events. I know that my game is in good shape and am putting last week down to just one of those weeks where it doesn't go for you.

Talk soon,
Padraig.

This week I'm at one of my favourite tournaments of the year, the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. Every year when I am looking at my schedule this is one of the first tournaments selected. It would really take a lot for me not to come and play here. I'm pretty sure that it's the same for most of the guys but the fact that I have won both the individual and the team twice means that it has a special significance for me.

As you know links golf is a form of the game that I have always enjoyed and had some success with. Then when you add in playing a team event with JP McManus this tournament really inspires me. JP missed last year but he?s back this year and raring to go.

I'm looking forward to playing as I feel my game is starting to click. When I played last in Portugal two weeks ago I saw a lot of very good signs. I am happy with my swing, there isn't much that I need to do to it and my speed is good. Along with all this, my short game is on its way back to its best so I"m excited about how things are looking. I know that if I keep playing away and doing my thing that there is a big week in there.

I got here on Sunday evening so that I could do some practice. I wanted to hit shots here as I have only been in warm weather for the last few weeks. It can take a bit of getting used to how the ball is affected by the cold links wind compared to what we would have had in Portugal. I played St. Andrews twice and Kingsbarns once. I didn't make the trip over to Carnoustie as I know the course well and didn't feel the need to see it.

St. Andrews and Kingsbarns are in very good condition, although they are greener than I have seen them for a long time, if ever. I've enjoyed my practice rounds this week as I played a few matches. I will say the most enjoyable one was on Wednesday when Shane Lowry and I took on Paul Dunne and Gavin Moynihan. Needless to say the old guys managed to teach the young lads a lesson!! You can?t beat a bit competition.

I'm all set and ready to go. As ever I?m excited about playing here with JP and I'd love nothing more than to pull off another Dunhill Links victory. I know that my game is good enough, I just need the putts to drop.

Talk soon,
Padraig.

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