UA-33754892-1 Archives for 10 July 2011 | Jason Kelly Golf

Jason Kelly Golf

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Open Du Haut Poitou

I got back from Italy on Friday evening. That night was spent celebrating my win with my old pal Sam Osborne who was back over from the States for Open Qualifying. Saturday was spent unpacking, reorganising and getting up to date with everything before meeting one of my sponsors, Jeff Knight and some other friends for a drink at Wentworth. The win was well received and it is nice to share a success with the people who’s help and support helped you do what you did. Saturday evening was another heavy one. This time with my old school friend Giles Wood who’s birthday we celebrated in Wimbledon during Wimbledon week, good fun. Sunday was spent recovering before going to my coach’s, Chris Murtagh, engagement party. So more drinks and some quality 5-a-side. I showed some class winning the Golden Boot! All in the weekend was exactly what I needed. Well, maybe not exactly. It was nice to get away from golf for a couple of days but would have been good to recharge the batteries a bit too!

Monday was another day off but this time without the fun. Packing and driving to France where the only two items on the itinerary. It was a long drive. An hour and a half to Calais, half an hour on the tunnel and five and half hours to Poitiers. Poitiers is located near the west coast of France, two hours north of Bordeaux.

Tuesday I picked up a golf club again to play 9 holes. The course at Golf du Haut Poitou is ok. It has a woodland, hilly feel to the front nine and a parkland, almost linksy feel to the back 9. There are some good holes as well as some rather poor ones. In practice it played too firm. A few holes there is trouble short of the green and with a wind, which the members say always blows, they became almost impossible. However, a few hours of heavy rain before the pro am made the golf course much more playable. Even so, it was pretty clear the scoring would not be going deep around this par 73.

poitou 1
First opening tee shot

poitou 16
16th, one the hardest par 3’s we’ll play this year....great hole

First round was a strange one. I played poorly, with poor concentration and focus. I just kept drifting off to other thoughts like I wonder how hot it will be in Madrid next week. I played very conservatively as a result and holed out well. I was -2 with 3 to play including a very easy par 5, a strong position when, especially when -3 is leading. However I completely lost my action in the wind, started swinging fast and hit some very poor shots. Three bogies was the punishment and a round of 74 (+1) was the result. A share of 11th place. -4 was the best score of the day.

Day 2 was much the same. It was windy so I just hit a few wedges to get some rhythm before my round. I hit it solid and kept that nice rhythm all day. I bogied my first and last hole but had four birdies in between. 71 (-2) was the outcome. The first two days were played in cruise control. I had done some good stuff and some bad stuff but going into the last round I was just one behind in 3rd. I had not holed from outside 9ft, but not missed much from inside. I had chances again.

I thought if I could shoot -4 and get it to -5 I would win. There was no wind so perhaps the scoring would be a bit better. If I could get through the harder front 9 in anything under par I would have a good chance of reaching that goal. I hit an 8 iron from 206 yards to a foot on the third for the 1st birdie of the day. I made solid pars on the next couple before missing a 6 foot par putt on the 6th. I had a chance to bounce back on the next. I hit a nice wedge to 4ft. My playing partner was so slow. He had a putt from maybe 9 feet on the same hole. I managed to walk from the back of the green, to the front, to the back, to the front and to the back again. Roughly 175 yards in the time he took to line up and hit his putt. I had been pretty cool, accepting and patient all week. His slow play was killing me, killing my rhythm, killing my momentum. It gives you way to much time to think about whats going on etc. It is unnecessary and on tour it is rightly punished. On the mini tours they don’t clamp down. When someone is taking 2-3mins to hit an easy put it is unacceptable. It is unsporting and irritating.

I missed my birdie putt. I was, incredibly, angry before I hit it. I felt almost rushed. I was now aware of his slow play and it angered me. “Why should this guy be allowed to continuously break the rules.” I don’t normally get so hung up about things like this. Normally I can think of something else like my top 11 premiership players of all time or current best team or a song that I can hum/sing/whistle to myself. Anything to distract myself. I tried to walk around, look at the scenery etc but then I would turn around and he still had not hit it made me more angry. Not good.

poitou 1 tee
view from tee 1 past the clubhouse, not even this scenery could distract be from the slow play!

I was out of sorts now. I missed a 3ft par putt on 8, 3 putted 9, missed from 6ft at 10 and 3 putted the easy par 5 11th from 3ft for bogey. 5 bogies in 6 holes and tournament over. I three putted 13 for another bogey. Mind and body gone missing in action. A bogey on 17 and a tap in birdie on 18 meant I had shot 78 (+5). I dropped to 11th.

It was weird. I don’t blame the guy I played with in the final round. He is just very, very slow and in time he will need to change otherwise if and when he plays bigger events he will be fined through the nose. I blame myself. Mentally I can handle situations like that so when don’t it is seriously disappointing. It happened last week when I won too. The guy I played with there is a quick player but takes for ever on the greens and it got to me then even though I had a four shot lead at the time. I three putted the next 3. So if you are reading this and you want to know how to beat me.....just slow it up!!

poitou esculator
You need this back up to the clubhouse after bleeding to a 78! 5 heart attacks last year so they put this in!

11th was a good result on a week I had no expectations. My preparation was not too good, I did not play too well, I holed out well but made no real putts. But if I had holed out well all week I would have won. Doing the simple things well is the simple key. Look at Luke Donald, he is just doing the simple things better than anyone else in the world right now.

My stats this week. Round 1, Fairways 50%, Greens 66.7%, 31 putts. Round 2, Fairways 57.1%, Greens 77.8%, Putts 30. Round 3, Fairways 57.1%, Greens 77.8%, Putts 37. Nothing exceptional, just one very bad day of putting. On a positive note, I moved up to sixth in the order of merit.

Two days at home now before Madrid on Tuesday. Might go and practice with 8 jumpers and a bobble hat on to try and prepare for the heat!!