Young Bryden’s journey to the US Masters
This year, one of Australia’s most promising up-andcoming golfers, Bryden Macpherson, will be living every golfer’s dream as he tees off at Augusta National for the US Masters. In this continuing series, we’ll follow Bryden’s preparation and progress for the event, as shared by mental game expert Jamie Glazier.
APPROXIMATELY 7 years ago, I got a call from a young 14-yearold golfer wanting to come and see me for some mental game training. Little did I know the journey that we were both about to go on would eventually lead us to the famous grounds of Augusta National and the US Masters.
In July of 2011, Bryden Macpherson won the British Amateur, one of the world’s most prestigious amateur golf tournaments. With that victory, he received an invite into the 2011 British Open and 2012 US Masters. Bryden went on to play the British Open and was paired with Padraig Harrington and Matt Kuchar— both of whom Bryden outscored in the first round, though he eventually missed the cut by one shot.
After the dust settled on Bryden’s British Amateur victory and his British Open experience, we began to make plans for preparing both himself and his game for 2012 and the greatest golf tournament in the world, the US Masters.
Bryden would spend the Australian summer playing in events such as the Australian Open, Australian PGA and the Australian Masters— all of which would give us a great idea of where his game currently is and what aspects we need to focus on fine-tuning to prepare for our assault on 2012. Spending our first week together in approximately 6 months at the Australian Open gave us some really good clarity on what we needed to focus on as Bryden played some really solid golf in round 1, before putting a little too much pressure on himself in the 2nd round to miss the cut.
The following week came the Australian PGA at Coolum where I caddied for Bryden to not only get an inside look at how he would act and react to situations during competition but to also – and more importantly—take a close look at his language patterns during tournaments.
Unfortunately he missed another cut and this time he didn’t take it so well. Missing cuts as a golfer are never much fun, let alone a string of them, so Bryden was understandably disappointed at this stage. We spent a few hours on the range on Saturday fine-tuning his post-shot routine, which is the process 5-7 seconds after he hits his shots. This stage of a golfer’s performance is crucial in being able to process the result and performance of that shot in an empowering way and Bryden could see he needed a little refining in this stage.
Bryden headed off back to the US for a few weeks before flying back for the Australian Masters at Victoria GC — where I again would be caddying for him the whole week. I sent him off with his list of homework and exercises to focus on in preparation for the Australian Masters.
The week began with both of us in good spirits and we enjoyed a practice round with another client of mine, Steve Jones, where there was some good banter and fun had by all, but Bryden
could feel there were a few things not quite right with his swing.
A quick look by his swing coach, Denis Mcdade, on Tuesday afternoon turned out to be more of a mini overhaul, which we never want to do in a tournament week, but we all felt that we could implement the technical changes into his routines.
We found out later that day that we would be paired with Jonesy for the first 2 rounds, which would be great for me as I could see up close my clients in tournament conditions, but also help each other relax and have fun in those first 2 days.
Bryden played quite solidly the first round and we felt the work we had been doing on his post-shot routine was going really well—if we could just get his swing to ingrain the changes Denis made at a comfortable level, who knows how low he could go.
Day 2 was really solid, with his swing feeling more comfortable. Bryden found himself under par for the tournament, before finishing at +2 and making the cut on the number. There were some really encouraging signs from both a technical and mental point of view from the past 2 days and I could see on Bryden’s face that he was pretty happy to make a cut. More importantly, he could really feel he was working on some things in his game that he knew would help his game dramatically in the near future.
So into the weekend we went and Day 3 was a tough day with nothing really going our way but we were still excited about what Sunday could bring. Bryden felt pretty relaxed going into Round 4 and the conditions were the toughest they had been all week, with a pretty strong wind whipping across the course.
All the hard work and focus for the week began to pay off on Sunday with Bryden playing some great golf and shooting equal 2nd best score for the day with a -4 67. That was a great way to finish off 2011 and head into the Christmas and New Year period with a sense of belonging inside the ropes with the pros.
The week of having me on the bag must have been a good thing for Bryden, as he has asked me to caddie for him at Augusta, which I am extremely excited about, to say the least.
The next phase of our preparation for Augusta is the Australian Amateur in Melbourne where I will also caddie for him to fine- tune our partnership. Bryden really wants to win the Australian Amateur so we will be completely focused and driven to bring our “A” games that week and see what we can come up with, but so far our journey to the US Masters is most definitely on track.
Editor’s note: we will continue to report on Bryden’s progress leading up to the US Masters. Follow the story each month in Inside Golf !
Sporting the University of Georgia Bulldog colours and logo, Macpherson will be returning to Augusta to contest the US Masters
Bryden Macpherson with mental game coach Jamie Glazier as his caddie at the Jbwere Masters