Jon Rahm

Golf World (UK) - - CONTENTS -

Less than two years into his pro­fes­sional ca­reer, the Spa­niard opens up on his rapid rise, his Mas­ters ter­ror and his plans for the fu­ture.

Still less than two years since turn­ing pro, Jon Rahm has wasted lit­tle time ris­ing up in the world. Four pro­fes­sional vic­to­ries on the two tours have pro­pelled him to third in the world, within touch­ing dis­tance of the top…

1 You’ve ob­vi­ously come a long way and achieved so much in a very short space of time. Has the speed of your as­cent sur­prised your­self?

It’s hard to as­sess it. All I can say is I would have never fore­seen the way I played, maybe the way I played but not what I’ve ac­com­plished. I would have never fore­seen four wins, two on each Tour, be a Euro­pean Tour mem­ber, win two Rolex se­ries events, win the Tour Cham­pi­onship in Europe. So it’s just been two years, but I’ve ac­com­plished a lot more than I set my mind to.

2 You’re about to play your sec­ond Mas­ters. What do you re­call of last year and your first Au­gusta ap­pear­ance?

I re­mem­ber that it was nerver­ack­ing (laughs). You saw my first tee shot. Could not have been more scared of any­thing. That first tee is ab­so­lutely packed, it’s my first ma­jor of the year and first ma­jor as a pro. Play­ing re­ally good, al­most beat Dustin at the WGC, I had fin­ished 10th in Hous­ton and the ex­pec­ta­tions around me are just go­ing up and up and up. Am I go­ing to be the next first-time win­ner at Au­gusta. I’m like, I don’t know. Then I see there’s a 50mph wind. With th­ese winds I’m like, “Don’t ex­pect some­body like me to be win­ning at Au­gusta be­cause it’s not nor­mal” – if it was good weather, maybe, but last year was tough. I re­mem­ber be­ing re­ally ner­vous and all over the place un­til I made birdie on 8, then it got a lit­tle eas­ier. Hope­fully this time will be less nervy for me.

3 You reached num­ber two in the world ear­lier this year and could have taken over at the top had re­sults gone your way. How big an am­bi­tion is that, to be num­ber one?

If get­ting to num­ber one was some­thing easy, I would be a lot more re­laxed than I have been about it. I’m look­ing for­ward to it, if it ever hap­pens. But at the end of the day it’s a con­se­quence of the good play on the golf course. So I just need to fo­cus on hit­ting good shots and mak­ing putts and the rest will take care of it­self.

4 You re­ferred to Dustin John­son as Su­per­man ear­lier this sea­son. If you do even­tu­ally re­place DJ at the top of the world rank­ings, are you then Su­per­man?

No, no. I would be the per­son who de­feated Su­per­man. Ob­vi­ously I said that as a joke be­cause he won a tour­na­ment by eight shots and he al­most holed out a driver from 430 yards. Those are things that don’t hap­pen of­ten. It doesn’t mean that he’s un­beat­able, be­cause this is golf, no­body’s un­beat­able. You’re go­ing to get beat at some point. But def­i­nitely we all know he’s a force to be reck­oned with. He’s a great player and in great phys­i­cal form. But, yeah, I mean it wouldn’t make me Su­per­man, be­cause like I said, he is. I would just be the guy who de­feated Su­per­man.

5 Given the level of com­pe­ti­tion at this level, have you had to change or tem­per your ex­pec­ta­tions?

No, my ex­pec­ta­tions are quite sim­i­lar. I com­pete to win. That’s what I did back then and that’s still what I feel now. That’s prob­a­bly why I was able to suc­ceed so early in my ca­reer. Even when I showed up at Con­gres­sional in my first pro start, I teed up the first day of the first hole con­vinced that I could win the golf tour­na­ment and that’s how I go. That’s the only mind­set I will ever have.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.