I’ve experienced a lot of highs and lows over the last two or three weeks - but they were all good i think.

by Chris Wood on June 12, 2010

At Wentworth it was a new experience, leading going into the final round and dealing with lots of different things

Obviously there was a lot of pressure on me. But there were lots of other different little things you’ve got to do, like seeing your name on the leaderboard and trying not to let it get to you. It’s quite easy to let your mind wander a little bit.

But the more I can put myself into contention then the more I can learn from experiences like that. I played in Majorca the week before and was there or thereabouts all week as well. It might not be as big as the PGA but there were still things I could learn from it.

As far as Wentworth was concerned I don’t feel as though I played that badly. You could say luck went against me on the final day. I thought with some of the bogeys I actually hit quite good shots. I came off the course at the end of the round and said to my caddie Dave ‘What did I do wrong?’ He said to me ‘How many of those shots would you want to hit again?’ When I went through the round I thought: ‘not that many’. I was fairly happy with most of the shots I hit.

The course was playing a lot tougher on Sunday, the pins were a lot tougher and it firmed up all of a sudden. I felt I was only just a yard or two or out on a lot of my shots and got penalised for it. Then in Wales I played very solidly on the first day. I played pretty similarly on the second day but made three double-bogeys out of nowhere really. I probably go quite a few rounds without a double-bogey, so to make three in one round demoralised me a little bit. I was really disappointed Friday night and I found it really hard to lift myself up for the weekend.

Much of my disappointment at the moment is coming with my putting. I’ve lost a lot of confidence. I’m giving myself a lot of chances as well, which is frustrating. I’m coming off thinking I’ve perhaps missed at least three putts which I shouldn’t have missed. That’s the difference in being 10th or whatever and first or second. I just can’t seem to get any momentum with my putting. Once you see a couple going in then the confidence comes back.

My driving’s turned into one of the strongest parts of my game and I’d say my ironplay’s improved this year dramatically. I hardly hit a full iron shot now. I hit a lot of knock-down three-quarter shots, controlling the distance really well. That’s what has set up all my chances on the greens. But I’ve just not been taking them. I’ve been getting fairly decent results but felt I’ve been throwing shots away with my putting.

I don’t feel there is a lot of technical work needs to be done with my putting. But the trouble is you can get lots of bits from other people and end up confusing yourself. Dave sees all my putts, he’s got a view on it. Then my coach sees things. Then someone else will come and say something. I really need to focus on one thing, do what my coach is telling me only. I need a good break to put some work in, rather than do it at tournaments when my mind’s on the tournament.Putting has definitely got to be my priority and the way things have worked out then maybe I’ve got a better chance now I’m not going to be at the US Open.

My manager Chubby Chandler said it wouldn’t be bad for me if I didn’t qualify and he was right. I wanted to be in the US Open. You want to be in every major you can be in. But after Sunday at Wentworth I couldn’t see myself wanting to get up, warm up, and within 12 hours time, play 36 holes. If I did qualify it was probably going to take three weeks out of my schedule and I’ve learned that a run of golf is good for me. Playing the US Open would have broken up my schedule. So I withdrew on Sunday night.

Sometimes good things can come from bad, though. I’ve now got a week to work on my putting. We’ve got some huge tournaments coming up, including the Open. Let’s hope my putting can prove dramatically in time for them.

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Author Chris Wood

After a top-5 finish as an amateur in the 2008 British Open, Chris Wood proved his future is bright by following up with a 3rd-place finish in 2009, putting him on his way to earning the Sir Henry Cotton award as the 2009 European Tour Rookie of the Year.