Patrick Reed's Approach to the Masters 2018
Patrick Reed took out the 2018 Masters by one stroke. 27 year old Reed won his first major victory with 15-under par while fending off some of the most talented professional golfers in the tournament's history. The final leaderboard shows Rickie Fowler immediately behind him on 14-under followed by Jordan Spieth on 13-under and Jon Rahm on 11-under.
Tied on 5th with 9-under are Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Bubba Watson and Aussie Cameron Smith, while Smith's fellow Australian Marc Leishman is next on 8-under. Following close are Tony Finau, Dustin Johnson, Charley Hoffman, Justin Rose, Louis Oosthuizen, Paul Casey, Tommy Fleetwood and many more stars and champions.
Reed was ranked at number 24 for the outset of the Masters. The field was filled with others who ranked ahead of him as well as charismatic and legendary golfers from around the world. Reed had never won a major and did not have a great 'crowd following' or popularity wave, as do many of the others. Instead he had received rather unfavourable press coverage and a tepid response from the crowding golf fans. So, how did he overcome all this to take home the coveted green jacket of the Masters?
When asked about this in the CBS interview above, Reed's reply is reminiscent of Ted Potter's comments after his win at Pebble Beach this year. Potter was a virtual golfing unknown, ranked in the mid-200s when he won the Pebble Beach championship. Potter, too, was fending off a posse of of golfing greats and after his win he, too, was asked about the pressure that this may place on his game. Potter said that he knew that all he could do was "Just go out there and try to play the best golf I could".
At 2.10 in the video above Reed is asked about his thoughts, "When you're in that moment and feeling that pressure.. Are you thinking clearly?"
Reed replies, "That's the thing about golf, it's such a mental game. And.. my whole motto during the entire week was just, Hey! .. Be who you are. Just play golf. Because... a lot of times coming into the majors, people over-hype them. You know, players are like, 'Oh I have to play well. I have to make birdies. I have to do this'. And all of a sudden you have just built that mental situation so great that you can't execute the shots properly.
"So I tried to bring it back down to reality. It's a golf tournament. It's 18 holes. You've got to hit a golf shot. Whoever has the lowest score after 36 holes wins... Yes, it's not just any tournament, it's the Masters! But psychologically, you know, you have to try to bring it back down to earth."
And on a final note, Reed's win was no small feat. He ended just two strokes short of becoming the first golfer ever to play all four rounds at Augusta National in the 60s. His 15-under 73 has only been bettered by five players. Only Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Raymond Floyd, Phil Mickelson and Jordan Spieth have gone through the four days at Augusta with fewer strokes. That is some accomplishment.