BBC BLOGS - Iain Carter
IN ASSOCIATION WITH
« Previous | Main | Next »

McDowell looks to build on major magic

Post categories:

Iain Carter | 06:00 UK time, Saturday, 11 June 2011

Mysteries abound in the golfing world. Why, for example, are the two best players on the planet still waiting to claim a major title? And why is the UK's most recent winner of one of the big four titles so perplexed by the most prized trophy of his career to date?

While Luke Donald and Lee Westwood brace themselves for inevitable questions over the paradox of their lofty positions in the rankings and no majors to their name, Graeme McDowell sits back in the knowledge that he has already dodged having to endure such a quizzing.

Donald and Westwood's astonishing levels of consistency on Tour offer plentiful justification for their status as world number one and two. This, though, won't stop the "major" issue being thrown at them in the days that precede the US Open at Congressional. That, in turn, may make the task of breaking their duck more difficult to achieve.

This particular pressure is no longer there for McDowell, who defends the crown he won at Pebble Beach last year when he tees off in Maryland on Thursday.

Twelve months ago the rankings said he was the 37th best player in the world, indeed he had only just scraped into the US Open field. He went to California having just won the Wales Open in brilliant style and although he felt "calm confidence" heading into the second major of the year, the man from Portrush in Northern Ireland had no idea quite how his life was about to change.

In order to see this content you need to have both Javascript enabled and Flash installed. Visit BBC Webwise for full instructions. If you're reading via RSS, you'll need to visit the blog to access this content.


This week McDowell has flown to America to defend his title as the world number eight, the man who had held his nerve to close out the Ryder Cup for Europe and as the golfer who, at the end of last year, overcame Tiger Woods as the former world number one stood on the threshold of ending a losing streak that continues to this day.

When asked what is the biggest thing McDowell has learned about himself in the last year, he answers: "Maybe that I can handle being one of the world's top players.

"That will always be my first major championship. It (2010) will always be my defining year, my rookie year as a top player so I'll never have to go through this process again," the 31-year-old said.

By capitalising on the early collapse of third round leader Dustin Johnson at Pebble Beach and then outlasting Woods, Phil Mickelson and Ernie Els as well as Gregory Havret, the unlikely French challenger, McDowell was able to become the first European for 40 years to claim America's national championship.

Of that final day he remembers looking at the leaderboards for the first time early in the back nine. McDowell had just carded two bogeys from the middle of the fairway on both the ninth and tenth holes. "I saw that no-one was making a move and I was still two shots in front.

"I shot 74 to win the US Open. Not particularly sexy, but I played better that day than a 74. I actually struck the ball pretty good that day. I didn't get a huge amount out of the round, I only made one birdie, but that's how difficult Pebble was," he recalled.

"One of the things that makes me proudest is that Woods was on the board and Mickelson was on the board and Els was on the board, three top players."

By matching the achievement of Tony Jacklin, the last European to win a US Open, McDowell earned instant acclaim on this side of the pond, although it was unfortunate that his victory came on the eve of Wimbledon and in the middle of the World Cup - otherwise he would have received even greater recognition.

Never the less he embarked on a global tour with the famous but puzzling silver trophy in tow everywhere he went. "It's travelled a few air miles," he smiled. Eventually this prized possession ended up sitting in his office in his Lake Nona home and it has been a source of curiosity for the player and his management team ever since.

"The little lady at the top of the trophy, she's been a bit skew-whiff," he said. "We figured we had done that; it's been in a few bars and restaurants and there's been a few beverages and we've been drunk and whatever. We thought maybe we damaged it."

McDowell's fears were eased with the arrival of two 90 percent replica versions he ordered. "The little lady is skew-whiff on those as well. But then when I was at Congressional about six weeks ago, their replica (the USGA's) was there and she's on there perfect."

Another curiosity is that even though he backed up his Pebble Beach win by performing the decisive heroics at Celtic Manor in the Ryder Cup it wasn't until the end of 2010 that the American golfing public fully recognised McDowell's competitive talents.

That was when he hunted down Woods on the closing hole of the fourteen time major champion's own tournament near Los Angeles and then beat him in sudden death. "It's amazing how much notoriety I gained in the States because of that," McDowell said.

"I would say 50 per cent of the people probably mention the US Open to me and 50 percent of the people mention the Chevron to me, or maybe even more. I've gained huge kudos in the US for that one."

It is probable that the confidence he needed to achieve that win was borne from his exploits at Pebble Beach and Celtic Manor earlier in the year. Gaining a first major crown is a huge monkey off any player's back and how dearly Donald and Westwood want to jettison that particular primate.

For McDowell the future is all about building on the platform last year has given him. "I don't want to be a one hit wonder, but I want to be the best player I can be.

"What have I got, five, ten maybe 15 years of probably the prime of my career? I've got a hell of a lot of improving to do, there's so many areas of my game that I can get much, much better at.

"I've got a huge amount of belief in myself from 2010. I'm a good putter under pressure which is a huge weapon. So yeah, I want to win more major titles."

In order to see this content you need to have both Javascript enabled and Flash installed. Visit BBC Webwise for full instructions. If you're reading via RSS, you'll need to visit the blog to access this content.


On that visit to Congressional to help promote this year's Championship (he's a textbook ambassador for the game) it was a cool day and the course played brutally long. It certainly didn't fit his eye in the way that Pebble Beach did last year, but he is unconcerned.

"Congressional is going to be a huge milestone for me, it really is. I'm excited to get there and I'm excited to have that weight lifted off my shoulders really." He is talking about the burden of being a reigning major champion.

"Is it a weight that is bearing me down? No. Is it subconsciously bearing me down? It might be, I don't know."

As effective an operator in the media tent as there is, McDowell clearly enjoys posing and trying to answer his own questions. "Do I love having these conversations about the US Open and the Ryder Cup? I love having them.

"They are great memories, but I'm ready to get on with the rest of my career. I'm ready to refocus myself and try to be the best player I can be."

That's the luxury of being a major winner and that's the prize this week in the sights of Donald, Westwood and a whole host of potential first time winners.

To get over this hurdle, though, they'll have to first beat someone who knows exactly what it takes. Only then can they also try to solve the mystery of the wonky lady atop the trophy.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Where's the MBE?

  • Comment number 2.

    Great piece about a great bloke - his insights are so honest and refreshing - I remember the interview after the Ryder Cup when he admitted that the pressure was so great that he wondered why he put himself through it, that it was so difficult that he really wanted to be somewhere else - real honesty and honesty that we can understand - not the cold robotic sporting comments we hear usually. He is a fabulous ambassador, never any nonesense away from the course (that we know of) and he's good banter on twitter to boot ! Good luck next week G-Mac and with the rest of the season.

  • Comment number 3.

    Lovely fella ... always come across as giving genuine comment and not just asisnine soundbites for the massed morons ... I mean would that other fellow ever admit to "being drunk" haha .... no ... he would do much much worse haha!

  • Comment number 4.

    He's done an absolutely cracking job over the last year, and I think with a little more consistency throughout the year he could be up there with Westwood and Donald in the rankings. @1 - totally agree...
    On a slightly unrelated matter, MBE for Donald as well as Westwood should be happening...

  • Comment number 5.

    Once again, UK-media going a OTT on McDowell: he had a great six months...but has done jack in the last six...and judging by the way he's been playing recently, developing swing-problems as well.

  • Comment number 6.

    Silver Surfer,, so the only thing you can take the trouble to sign in here and write is that he hasn't won in the last 6 months, typical of the negativity of your generation and no doubt you are english,, so the envy is pouring out of your small minded words. the guy won the US open the first british golfer in 40 years, 40 years against the best golfer who ever swung a golf club and all you can say is ,, he's done nothing for 6 months... name the last british golfer to win a major??? Paul Lawrie.. 1999 name an englishman,, Nick Faldo,, how log ago 1996.. get real he is a legend and a really nice bloke.. cpomments like yours come from people who have never won anything in their lives and have no concept of how dificult it is to win in any sport. plus the mental pressure from, the expectation of having done it once, to do it again.
    Typical example of the Birtish wantiong to knock down our sports people when they achieve rather than just say good luck to you Graeme Mc Dowell, well done son, keep it going.. .
    No doubt you are jealous that the Irish are the best golfers in the world in terms of number of tournaments and majors won during the last 3 years and long will it continue with our Rory, Padraig, Graeme, Darren, Micheal, Gareth, Danny, PAul all winning during that time on all tours around the world. Envy is a desructive animal and Silver Surfer it has devoured you..

  • Comment number 7.

    Completely agree with 6. Silver Surfer catch a grip, players go through tough spells. Example being Mr. Woods! And to say he has done nothing in 6 months is silly, he has been in contention in some massive tournaments (the Players) and he readily admits he is feeling tired.

    Form is temporary and class is permanent. GMac showed his class on numerous occasions last year and will continue to do so.

  • Comment number 8.

    No 6 Your question Name the last British Golfer to win a major. Answer Graeme McDowell US Open June 2010

  • Comment number 9.

    A great golfer and person. Full marks for committing to the US Tour after winning their open and for coming back to play The Wales Open when other big name Brits were straight back on the plane to the USA .

  • Comment number 10.

    8. At 11:47 11th Jun 2011, Michael Lowes wrote:
    No 6 Your question Name the last British Golfer to win a major. Answer Graeme McDowell US Open June 2010
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I think No 6 points that out when he says 'the guy (GMac) won the US open the first british golfer in 40 years'.

    I think his question meant to ask last English player, rather than British.

  • Comment number 11.

    Will not be defending his title.

  • Comment number 12.

    no I menatio who was the last british golfer before Mc Dowell to win a major. if fact Mc Dowell was/ is destined for greatness just look at his amateur career too, best collegiate golfer in 2002, on the winning Walker cup team, winner of the world unioversities championship,, the guy is a winner Full STop.. only the second european to win the US open since 1925 and all that numpty can say is that he has done aonything in six months.. it beggars beleif

  • Comment number 13.

    5.
    At 10:47 11th Jun 2011, Silver Surfer wrote:

    Once again, UK-media going a OTT on McDowell: he had a great six months...but has done jack in the last six...and judging by the way he's been playing recently, developing swing-problems as well.

    ----

    Bang on the money, Needs to back that Major win up by contending more in them in this season & next 2 seasons

  • Comment number 14.

    number 11,, you realy are sticking your neck out with that prediction are you!!
    what have these golfers have in common.
    Jack nicklaus, Tiger woods, Arnold Palmer, Ernie Els, Lee Trevino, Walter Hagen, Gene Sarazen, Byron Nelson: Answer they all won the US open but not two years in a row, that homour goes to Walter HAgen, Bobby Jones, willie anderson and two others. so not hard to make your statement, its worth noting those golfers who have never won the US open,
    Greg Norman, Gary Player, Phil Mickelson, Nick Faldo, Henry Cotton, Peter Thompson. to name but a few...

  • Comment number 15.

    #14 Gary Player has won one US Open and in fact has at least one win in all four Majors. Nine in total. Getting back to G-Mac what a great representative he is for Irish, British and European golf his grace under pressure in 2010 was remarkable. His accomplishments in six months would be a total career best for lots of golfers. It is a sad fact, but understandable, that careers are defined by winning majors and the likes of Colin Montgomerie who never won one, but has a fantastic career, will always be judged on this ommission.

  • Comment number 16.

    Monty is a legend, no matter what I met him many years ago and he was an absolutely lovely guy, spent time talking to everyone. If I looked at the career of Todd Hamilton, Ben Curtis, or even John Daly a multi majpor winner I would still put Month way ahead of them he was so consistent for such a long time. I know peope remember the winners of the majors but I will alway remmebr Monty his iron play to greens was just genius. as for Mc Dowell we will be looking at 3 or 4 majots by the time he is 40, IF and its a big IF he really has the desire, many are happy to have that one major ,, hope he puts in the work cos under pressure he is better at handling it than most and that is what defines the multiple major winners, period.
    gary player,,,respect !!!

  • Comment number 17.

    I couldn`t agree more with regards to Monty, his career was fantastic with all those Order of Merit wins but he is not recognized below the 49th parallel because of his lack of a major. Very sad. It is also interesting that the Americans are refusing to accept the Sony ratings for Donald, Westwood and Kaymer because of a lack of major wins, they are becoming quite spiteful about it on the golf broadcasts. They cannot accept that the golf world has caught up to and indeed passed the American dominance in golf.

  • Comment number 18.

    @17
    Kaymer has won a major title and a US one at that (US PGA) so for him not to be recognised by American golfing public would be odd.

    This rankings and majors debates is incredibly tedious. Obviously it is possible for golfers to be high (or top) rankings without winning a major as the rankings are based on a lot of tournaments. The only way to avoid this is to only allow majors to count toward ranking points which would be rather silly and you would have to take a lot of years into account to make it worthwhile. On this basis Arnold Palmer and Old Tom Morris would still be in top ten.

    The other solution is to award 10 points for winning any non major tournament and 1000000 points for winning a major. Then that would somewhat devalue the other tournaments.

    The rankings show who is most consistent and not necessarily the best player in the world at that moment. Ben Curtis won the Open a few years ago. Was he the number one ranked player before or after this? No.

  • Comment number 19.

    Should be an interesting tournament next week, I can't see the winning score being more than -5, realistically it could be closer to level par again like last year, Dustin Johnson will be there or there abouts again, but it wouldn't surprise me if there was a complete surprise winner again, I think Nicolas Colsearts will have a very big week and he could fit that bill

  • Comment number 20.

    6 - karlwbrown:
    Nope - stats don't lie.
    And neither do I.

  • Comment number 21.

    Re: 20, SS -

    Mmmm, yes your facts may well be correct. However, karlwbrown makes a more powerful argument in that you come across as someone who has never actually fought and achieved anything meaningful in your life. Your comments are spiteful, small minded and above all unnecessarily hostile. GMac may never win another golf title ever again; it matters not one jot, he has done more than enough to show he has what you clearly cannot understand: courage and class. This is unlike the frequently mentioned TW who has a lot of the former but none of the latter. Go back under the slime saturated rock you crawled from under; you haven't even got the magnanimity of your fictional comic book hero namesake.

  • Comment number 22.

    But how is it that nobody has taken karlwbrown to task for basically deciding that SS, because of his comments, is a sour faced Englishman? I'm quite aware that this thread is a golf thread but frankly he started this, and you have to presume that he isn't English and doesn't care for the English. Fine. I'm English, I've loved what G-Mac has done over the last year, I don't care that he's from N Ireland. He's a British golfer, a European golfer, a Ryder Cup hero, and a superb player and bloke. It's pretty mean to just slag anyone off that criticises him as English and jealous. Apart from anything else, the numbers 1 and 2 in the world are English - we've nothing to be jealous of at the moment (although if Westy of Luke could win a major that would be v nice). Can we talk about golf rather than karlwbrown's ridiculous assertion that anyone who questions G-Mac is English and jealous? I don't know where SS is from and I don't care, but the forum deserves better....

  • Comment number 23.

    KarlWbrown makes some good points re Gmac who I agree has delivered when it counts. What a shame Karl has to make an unnecessary (but highly predictable) swipe at the English (who number just under 50 million and may, but may not include silversurfer as one of them).

    I have supported all the Irish golfers without jealously and have made points on other threads here that Harrington and Gmac have more bottle than Westwood and Donald. The fact Karlwbrown uses a golfing thread to attack the English by assuming that the random poster he is debating with is English (a) devalues his otherwise strong argument and (b) makes him look like the jealous loser who has never achieved anything.

    Why do people have to bring their xenophobic views into a sporting debate?

  • Comment number 24.

    This is why this country has gone to the dogs. Firstly, it is very English to sneer and dismiss excellence. Secondly, MBE? Come on!!!

    P.S. Monty in his prime was always bashed in the media as being sullen, grumpy, not interview-friendly, etc. It's amazing how people have short memories, especially if they have a new "target" to vilify :)

  • Comment number 25.

    Okay, just for those who still don't get it. Here's my original post (so you have it twice and you don't have to scroll back up).
    "Once again, UK-media going a OTT on McDowell: he had a great six months...but has done jack in the last six...and judging by the way he's been playing recently, developing swing-problems as well."
    (notice I left the, 'hurtful' and 'spiteful' comments in as well)

    Now let's break it down for you so you no longer have such a tough time working it out:
    1 - "Once again, UK-media going a OTT on McDowell"
    Fact: this always happens in UK, with every sport as soon as some degree 'success' is attained. It's like 'The Next Big Thing In Football/Tennis/Golf/Whatever'

    2 - "he had a great six months..."
    Fact: 3 titles, inc. a Major in 2010

    3 - but has done jack in the last six..."
    Fact: he got a T6 at The Honda, a T5 at Volvo Matchplay and from there on, 3 missed cuts and 4 finishes outside the Top-30

    4 - "and judging by the way he's been playing recently, developing swing-problems as well."
    Fact: only shot in the 60s seven times in the last 34 rounds inc. a couple of 80s. As for the smother-pull-over-the-top position causing huge hooks to the left...well, based on the fact his swing is heavily timing-based with his transition move, if he doesn't have his timing that particular day, things can go downhill really, really quickly. Add to that problems with his short-game and you can see that he's going to struggle or miss the cut at Congressional.
    I'm sure G-Mac and Pete Cowan can work it out though.


    So, now that's cleared up, you can all go back to your Guinness...I'm busy looking for planets for someone to eat...

  • Comment number 26.

    Don't know if GMac will defend this week but if he found himself in a winning position I doubt he'd give it away, and that's what sets him apart now. Honest enough to admit to the pressure but strong and intelligent enough to deal with it. I was at Celtic Manor watching GMac v Mahan on the 16th green. Like all those around me I was shaking with tension and the man at the eye of the storm just rolled it in. I can see SS's point, the third round at the Wales Open was ugly and messy but I'd put money on him resolving this and winning somewhere in 2011 and would be surprised if he never won another major. Regarding the MBE, if GMac had won the British Open not the US Open he's certainly have had one. Likewise Luke Donald's best performances until Wentworth were in the United States so his profile here is lower. Not fair, but these awards seem to be based on profile as much as merit.

  • Comment number 27.

    I am struggling to understand why there is so much negativity on the forum towards GMac, he has achieved things many golfers never will.

    With regards to the Silver Surfer, you Sir are a bitter man who simply cannot seem to congratulate someone's success. You have thrown the 'facts' at us, but along with that you have put your own little spin on them. I bet you ask GMac or his team to analyse his last 6months and they will put a positive spin on them.

    Facts are facts, but they are open to interpretation.

  • Comment number 28.

    It is just typical of the anti-British Broadcasting Corporation that they can have their golf correspondent write about Graeme without ever even mentioning, let alone boasting, that he is British. Living in the same town that he comes from I remember listening the the anti-British Broadcasting Corporation the day after he won the US open. He was never once called British, instead the pro EU, pro nationalist, anti-British Broadcasting Corporation called him anything else other than British.

  • Comment number 29.

    @28

    I expect that the BBC just wants to avoid the whole controversy of labeling a sportsman from Northern Ireland as British. Always safer to stick to "Northern Irish" in situations like this as it avoids alienating a large chunk of the population.

  • Comment number 30.

    Good for Graeme McDowell and wishing him every success next week.

    But, Iain, please explain to the young apprentice who writes the golf blurbs that Rock's win today has absolutely nothing to do with securing his eligibility to play at Congressional.
    606v2 will be glad to go into further detail should the BBC require.

  • Comment number 31.

    I am always amazed at comments made about pro golfers be it T.W. Lee Westwood G Mac and the list goes on. This game has to be the hardest individual sport on the planet (tennis a close #2). Hundreds if not thousands are trying to get to the top every weekend, providing us hackers fabulous entertainment and virtual visits to places most of us can only dream of so please quit the negative stuff GMac has risen to the top but who knows who will be the next "superman" more and more players are only there for a few weeks or months so hats off to those that are there for years!! and quit bitching!!!

  • Comment number 32.

    Like Donald may well win a major. but I fear Lee Westwood is too old now, I love westy one of my favourite golfers of all time and I would love to see him win one but the stats say that he is probably not got the time left. how many have won after his age, very very few , but what a great guy and awesome player. I think there is too much emphasis placed on purely the majors as a judge of a golf career in any case unlike tennis were the only 5 set tournaments are majors and the rest 3 sets, where as all significant golf tournaments are played under the same 4 round format with basically all the same top 50 players in the field , I apologose for having a pop at the English, but sometimes the way the press go on and on about english sporting succes but the coverage of the other british successes does not in my view get the same coverage . Ian carter summed it up well, that GMAC suffered from the world cup beiong on at the same time.. and we got wall to wall coverage of a second rate football team to the detriment of a superstar performance from GMAC in the US open. it was nausiating.

  • Comment number 33.

    @25 - Silver Surfer

    It may have been better if you had clarified your original post with the stats that you have now produced - not all bloggers here are as thorough with their research :) I agree with the points that you make, by the way, especially on his swing.

    However, with regards to the media going OTT - this is what they do and we should all take it with a pinch of salt. It is sort of self-serving because if their "target" succeeds, they can point to their "prescience" and if the poor "target" fails, they have a ready-made story.

    Only history can really highlight how "great" a player is. McDowell has won one major so far. Let's celebrate his achievement (again, if you like) and hope for him that he can win another.

  • Comment number 34.

    The way McDowell has played this season I give him two chances, little and none. Missed cut is probably the bet of the year.

    @28 It's probably because if you dare to call anyone from NI British you get 300 pages of your fellow NI's on here arguing that he belongs to them and not Britain!!! And some people wonder why 606 was closed!

  • Comment number 35.

    McDowell was born in Northern Ireland. He is not British, therefore he could not be a British major winner. Northern Ireland isn't part of Britain, it is part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Nortern Ireland. There is a destinction you know. Its nothing to do with ideology, more geography really.

  • Comment number 36.

    At 35 - Not going to get into that debate, except to say you really are an idiot.

    As for GMac, would love to see him find the form from last year but the head is telling me it's unlikely. Still, it's great to see so many from NI at the top of world golf and a few others making a name for themselves.

    Reckon it'll be a US winner at Congressional, perhaps Dustin, Watney or the Kooch will make their breakthrough

  • Comment number 37.

    @35
    Right on cue!

  • Comment number 38.

    @36. Enlighten me so, so that I may go forward and be forever more factually correct. If not, then thats a pretty tame rejoinder.

  • Comment number 39.

    The nationality of anyone born in Northern Ireland is British since Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom. Aido is factually wrong and, as someone from Northern Ireland, I strongly resent his/her attempt to throw me out of the United Kingdom and deny my nationality.

  • Comment number 40.

    @38 - I'll enlighten you. I was born and bred in Northern Ireland and hold a British passport just like GMac. Perhaps the people of Northern Ireland might just know a little more about it than you?

  • Comment number 41.

    I love the internet.

    How does a perfectly relevent and interesting article about such a good guy end up with the comments turning into an argument about stats/rankings/the BBC's British/English/EU or whichever bias?!

    The US Open is this week. Graeme McDowell won it last year. Seems like a good time to have an article about what it's been like for Graeme McDowell in the last year and get some interesting perspectives from the man himself about what it has done for his career.

    There's no 'going OTT' about anyone. There's no denying he's British ("And why is the UK's most recent winner of one of the big four titles...").

    Calm down people!

    (P.S. Please don't calm down. The internet would not be so much fun!)

  • Comment number 42.

    GMac is the best thing to come out of N.Ireland since the belfast sink, a true gentleman. Need i say more as his creditials have been proven.

    Now to throw my piece in the fire....

    Being N. Irish with an Irish passport and working in London, (thus neutral) and working for UK Airport Authority i can confirm that N.Ireland is part of the UK, not Britain, but offers you the right to either an Irish or British passport.

    Good Luck all European golfers on what will be a hotly contested US Open!!

    Go Golf!

  • Comment number 43.

    @41 - With regard to your first paragraph, it's depressingly similar to the recent BBC football blog re. Swansea attaining promotion to the Premier League, which soon degenerated into a series of bigoted monologues by those, who ignoring both history and facts, maintained that there should be no place in the 'English' Premier League for a team from the Principality.

  • Comment number 44.

    I think the point with the northern irish/british debate is that there is no word for united kingdomish. Some just assume that british means this whereas some take it to literally mean from britain (england, scotland and wales). Personally i would agree with Aido but until someone creates a suitable word which means to belong to the UK and NI then sadly this petty argument will rage on

    Silver Surfer does make a good point about McDowells lack of consistency however i would have to take his word about the swing problems as I watch far too little golf and don't know enough to judge, anyone else got any opinions on this?

  • Comment number 45.

    It doesn't matter what land mass you are from, I was born in N.I and have a British passport and have British heritage. Therefore I am entitled to consider myself British. (By the way Aido I believe Ireland is in the British Isles? Just a thought if its come to a geography discussion.)

    And can I remind everyone the game of golf is played an inch behind the ball and an inch in front. As we all know what happens before and after that doesn't matter, technically.

  • Comment number 46.

    Silver surfer,, when in a hole stop digging, 4 points made , 3 all negative and just two half lines of positive comment,, that really does sum up Silver Surfer,, to take a guy who has created golfing history and boil it down to that lost in the tirade of fully expanded negativity just sums up this person.. how can you sum up GMACS last 12 months by expanding on all tha t bull about transition of his swing and his missed cuts when you should just be celebrating his US OPEN win and his close out of the Ryder Cup. Silver surfer is the type of negative energy sucking individual who would be the first person out the door in a corporate cull..its amazing 160 words of negative comment and 10 positive words,, yes silver surfer,that sums up GMAC's year..

  • Comment number 47.

    #40,

    Please go look at your passport again. Look at the what's written on the front cover.

  • Comment number 48.

    #47

    I'm well aware that it doesn't mention British however it's commonly referred to as a British passport. Remind me what the British Isles are made up of?

    A lot of N Irish consider themselves British but it seems a few on here who live in England mainly claim to know more about NI than our own people which is just ridiculous.

    I'll eagarly await your response to the above question since your trying to be smart.

  • Comment number 49.

    The last English person to win a major was Nick Faldo back in I think 1992 or something. The mass of English players that have come by since that time lack bottle...I think its an English thing...like their football team and rugby team...its an English thing.

    GMAC won a major cos he was born in N Ireland...the Irish part of him gave him the courage to win.

    Westwood and Donald will never win a major...they have proven enough times already that they dont have the nerve.

  • Comment number 50.

    lol james mathew, but you forgot the most important bit "in my opinion".

    P.S What happened to Rory?

  • Comment number 51.

    Rory messed up because of the British in him :)

    No joking but seriously...when will an English man win a major again?

    Westwood wont .... but Donald certainly has the game...he just needs to keep his head!

  • Comment number 52.

    Hopefully this weekend!

  • Comment number 53.

    im gonna go with Lukey Donald to win!

  • Comment number 54.

    The Duck to win would suit me down to the ground!

  • Comment number 55.

    the US open is at Congressional Country Club MD (Maryland) not MA (MASSACHUSETTS), as stated on http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport

  • Comment number 56.

    48. At 13:49 14th Jun 2011, NIreland1-0England wrote:
    #47

    I'm well aware that it doesn't mention British however it's commonly referred to as a British passport. Remind me what the British Isles are made up of?

    A lot of N Irish consider themselves British but it seems a few on here who live in England mainly claim to know more about NI than our own people which is just ridiculous.

    I'll eagarly await your response to the above question since your trying to be smart.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  • Comment number 57.

    48. At 13:49 14th Jun 2011, NIreland1-0England wrote:
    #47

    I'm well aware that it doesn't mention British however it's commonly referred to as a British passport. Remind me what the British Isles are made up of?

    A lot of N Irish consider themselves British but it seems a few on here who live in England mainly claim to know more about NI than our own people which is just ridiculous.

    I'll eagarly await your response to the above question since your trying to be smart.
    ________________________________________________________________________

    There is no such thing as a British passport. Like I said, read what's stated on the front of your passport, if you really have one :)

  • Comment number 58.

    Trying to be smart? That would be me saying smtg. like, " It's .... since you're trying to be smart".

    And you did not make a typo :p

  • Comment number 59.

    Nick Faldo 1996 was the last English winner of a Major.

    I love how all of a sudden when someone from NI wins a major everyone is British, or when Andy Murray is doing well everyone is British...but when Westwood is doing well...He is English and Luke D is English ... and all of a sudden no one is British.
    Until such time that Andy Murray is doing badly and suddenly he is Scotish and GMAC is Irish.

    Very amusing...Britain is not a country neither is England...but the UK is...so why doesnt everyone love each other and realise that Scotish, Welsh, English and NI are all from the 1 country. They are countys in one big country.

  • Comment number 60.

    @ 46. Karlwbrown... like the sound of your own voice much?

    silver surfer made a comment on a blog.. and your trying him for war crimes. he made a fair comment, you forced him to defend himself and your still having digs at him. And your attacking his character over a few lines on a web page while trying to humilate him to others and then having the cheek to call him negative... you sound like such a great bloke yourself.

    we get that your irish and proud, congratulations on that. have you anything interesting to say?



  • Comment number 61.

    @59 james mathew

    You have a point, I have noticed that too but I think the media is to blame there, not the every day English sports fan.......I love you all!!!

    Perfect result for me:

    1. Luke Donald (Eng)
    2. Matteo Manassero (Ita) (don't shoot me, I'm half Italian!)
    3. Martin Laird (Sco)
    4. Rory McIlroy (NI)

    :)

  • Comment number 62.

    Daffy...I agree totally...I think the media is certainly to blame for the switching of "labels" on certain sports stars.

    I like your top 4...I think forget McIlroy and Fowler....Matteo Manassero is way ahead of them...The guy JUST turned 18... and already has the same wins as McIlroy and 2 more then Fowler (granted McIlorys wins were much bigger events).

    That kid will be in the top 10 b4 he is 19! How do ya like that :) thats my call...ill be back here in 10 months gloating!

  • Comment number 63.

    G-MAC, sounds like a vacuum cleaner. Mcdowell is lucky, perhaps he is good under pressure, but I see throught the bullish comments and cute depricating observations. Harrington is the same. Had a flash of brilliant consistency off the back of a bit of luck at a major and catapulted into the media spot light. Westwood is a superb player and deserves a few lucky puts this week.

    Come on Lee pop them in and give us an English US-Open champ!

  • Comment number 64.

    Yeah it's scary when you remind yourself just how young Manassero is and what he's achieved already, an incredible talent. Future number 1? If he carries on the way he is, it's a real possibility.

  • Comment number 65.

    Come on Lee Westwood...Can he become the 2nd English man in the last 40 years to win a major?

    Wow when u say it like that...there has only been 1 English major winner in the last 30-40 years!

    How is that possible?

  • Comment number 66.

    @62 - Mannasero is way ahead of Rory... Really? Why do you make this assumption?

    @63 - Are you serious?! Firstly it is not GMac's fault for his accent, nobodies perfect in this world, so why do we expect it off our celebrities. To call GMac lucky is hugely unfair and ridiculous, you don't win 3 tournaments in a year and win the match that seals the Ryder Cup on luck. With regards to Paddy, a 3 time major winner, multiple top 10s, victories on tour and Ryder cup player.. he is lucky? Could it not be that the man possesses/possessed a fantastic short game?
    You slate GMac and Paddy for 'luck', yet you hope Westy gets lucky this week... Catch a grip sir, you are a bitter Englishman.

 

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.