For The Dawgs
Harris English is a former Georgia Bulldog and huge fan of the ‘Dawg’ football program. He keeps a UGA mascot head cover on his driver and has an UGA logo on his tour bag. As bad as he must have felt on Saturday……
…..that was all well behind him when he putted out on 18 on Sunday. In the final round of the OHL Classic at Mayakoba English took no prisoners. He began the round 1 shot back of 54 hole leader Robert Karlsson and took the lead outright with a long birdie putt on the 11th hole. After another birdie at the par five 13th hole English had grabbed the tournament by the throat and taken command. At the same time, the field began to press knowing they’d have to gamble to catch him. Brian Stuard, Justin Hicks, and Karlsson all made critical back nine errors that ended their chances of keeping pace with or catching English. Harris’ tally of 65 shots in the final round made it tough for any of his challengers to catch him even if they had not faltered.
When Harris English plays like this you scratch your head and wonder why he hasn’t won more. Then you remember that he’s only 24 and has already won once and also won on the Nationwide/Web.com tour as a collegiate golfer. This win means Harry has more total PGA Tour wins than Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, and Rickie Fowler. Think about that…..how is English so far under the radar? When I watch him play I see a young Ernie Els. He has a solid all around game, fluid swing, and calm demeanor. He’s going to win plenty and this could be a breakout season for English. I’ll set the over under at 1.5 wins and bet that most of you take the over. Remember, today’s win counts thanks to the wrap-around schedule.
Don’t Say The ‘S Word’
After Henrik Stenson’s win in Dubai earlier in the day, several golf journos were forecasting Robert Karlsson as the Mayakoba winner. They hailed it as some kind of Swedish Redemption Day as the two (former Ryder Cup partners) had both battled back from the deep dark depths of professional golf. Karlsson’s fall into the abyss isn’t as well known as Stenson’s. In the middle of the 2012 season and after finishing 29th at the U.S. Open, Karlsson got the yips. No, not with his putter, with his full swing. He froze over the ball and couldn’t take the club away. You’ve seen Charles Barkley swing, right? It wasn’t that bad, but it probably felt like that to Karlsson. Jason Sobel’s article from last year summed it up best.
The broadcasters on the Golf Channel discussed Karlsson’s mental block briefly during the telecast of the final round at Mayakoba. Karlsson talked to Sergio Garcia, of all people, in search of a cure or fix. Things got so bad he couldn’t finish holes in his British Open practice rounds and eventually withdrew from the championship!
According to Robert, he got through this personal hell in part by hitting thousands of golf balls and accepting the fact that he would shank some of them. He just had to get over it and fight through it. What a complete mind fuck. Karlson played holes 12 through 14 four over par in the final round at Mayakoba. Did the demons creep back into his psyche? That’s tough to say. He is obviously a talented, world-class player when his mind is right. However, due to his mental scar tissue, he’ll be an interesting player to follow in the near future just to see what’s going on upstairs.