How did Dustin Johnson NOT win the WGC?

You’d have thought the World Number 1 player, with a 6 shot lead, going into the Final Round of the WGC - HSBC Champions would be making a space in the trophy cabinet for a third WGC title THIS year?!

Not so, and I actually called it before the final round was underway. Now, here at The Mind Zone, we have huge respect for Dustin Johnson and what he has achieved in the game, let’s be honest, us mortals dream of hitting a 350 yard plus drive down the fairway! …but there was something in DJ’s post round interview that made me consider… he’s overthinking the situation.

Johnson, when being interviewed talked about the fact he wasn’t happy with his putter, so he had a new one made, handed to him twenty minutes or so before his tee time, he hit a few putts on the practice green before his third round and decided he would go with the new putter.  His indecisiveness over the equipment he was using, I believe, was an unnecessary distraction during his final round. When asked what his tactics would be in the final round and whether he had to worry about his fellow competitors, DJ responded with ‘I’m not worried what they are doing, I have enough to worry about in my own game’.  Now, what on earth did he have to worry about? He was going into the last 18 holes with a six shot lead, had played very well to attain that lead over the previous three days, had already won two WGC events in the past year and was world number ONE!

A bogey on the 1st and 2nd hole will have done nothing for DJ’s confidence, although even with just 9 holes remaining, he still held onto a 3 shot lead.  Afterwards he said ‘I just couldn’t get anything going today and no putts would drop’.  I’m sure we have all had a similar round on occasion, but if we could limit those days to a minimum, how much better would that be? How much better could it be?

Justin Rose, on the other hand, simply followed his process throughout the final round, starting the final round 8 shots back from Dustin Johnson.  Even after carding three birdies and three bogies to finish the front 9 at level par, surely it was a big ask to go on and win it, especially since he was 6 shots back with 9 holes to play? Rose just kept taking each shot in turn, playing his own game and remaining calm. When he reached the 18th tee, he knew even a bogey 6 would be enough. When you watch Justin Rose play (now currently 6th in the World Rankings) you’ll notice he rarely gets agitated.  He remains calm, in his own process and if you cast your mind back to the play-off in the Masters against Sergio, he was very methodical, despite eventually losing out that time to Garcia.

Tom Boyes & Justin Rose at Wentworth 2017

We all, of course, want to win golf tournaments, society days, and even the Saturday morning swindle, but have you noticed on those days when everything comes good, how relaxed and calm you felt?

Come along to The Mind Zone - Play Your Best Golf session being held at The Bentley Golf Club, Brentwood, Essex on Monday 20th November 2017 at 7.00pm.  For details, contact us via the website or book online.