Upbeat Willett looks to Carnoustie with confidence
Pain-free and back in form, Danny Willett is out to show just why he has a Green Jacket at home when he launches his bid for the Claret Jug.
The 30-year-old leaped into the world’s top ten when he won The Masters two years ago but since then it has been a story of pain and frustration, and he dropped out of the world’s top 450 earlier this year.
However, anyone who saw him defeat Jordan Spieth on that last Sunday at Augusta National knows he could never be away for long and a new fitness regime, along with a period of recovery, has made all the difference.
A sixth-place finish at the Irish Open was followed up with top 20 finish at the Scottish Open, and Willett is now confident he can make a run at Carnoustie this week, as he seeks to improve on his tie for sixth three years ago.
“I was very fortunate to win a phenomenal golf tournament in The Masters but for us Brits The Open is the one,” he said.
“It would be beautiful to give it a run again and I am feeling in decent shape. I gave it a good run at St Andrews in 2015 and when you get the crowds behind you it is an amazing thing.
“This is definitely the most confident I have been in the last two years. I am in a good place off the golf course and on it, things have become a lot more enjoyable.
“You hit some bad shots but I have a good understanding of why they come now, so that is nice. I can brush them off and not dwell on them. I’m working well right now. I had a nice week at the Scottish Open and I am now trying to get it going again around here.”
For Willett, winning The Open has always been the dream. Like many, he saw Tiger Woods win at St Andrews in 2000 and 2005 and he has not stopped believing since.
Woods may be in the field again this year but The Open is as unpredictable this year as it ever has been.
Carnoustie may have a fearsome reputation but the dry rough and fast fairways means that everyone is in contention.
“I am 30-years-old and for me it is the same as kids today, it is Tiger I grew up watching. It is always Tiger,” he added.
“There was a little bit of [David] Duval and then Ernie [Els]. I got into my first Open at Royal St George’s and it is has been a dream every time since.
“The conditions will play a big part in everything at Carnoustie and I am ready for it. I’m eager to get out there.”
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