Sunday, March 26, 2017

Jon rams his way into WGC – Dell Match Play semi-finals

Jon Rahm continued his ascent to the very top of golf’s world order by moving into the semi-finals of the WGC – Dell Technologies Match Play after crushing the hopes of Charles Howell III and Søren Kjeldsen in the last 16 and quarter-finals on Saturday.
The 22-year-old Spaniard, currently 25 in the Official World Golf Rankings, beat Howell 6 and 4 in his morning match, before crushing Kjeldsen 7 and 5 to set up a semi-final match with Bill Haas on Sunday morning at Austin Country Club, Texas.
Kjeldsen had beaten William McGirt 6 and 4 before Rahm proved too strong for the Dane. Haas, meanwhile, was victorious over Kevin Na (1 hole) and then Phil Mickelson (2 and 1) in the quarter-finals.
The other semi-final will see World Number One Dustin Johnson taking on Hideto Tanihara of Japan.
Tanihara defeated the English duo of Paul Casey (3 and 1) and Ross Fisher (4 and 2) to set up a date with Johnson in the last four. Fisher can console himself with the knowledge that his victory over Bubba Watson on Saturday morning enabled him to amass enough World Ranking points to move into the top 50 and book a place at Augusta National in two weeks’ time at the Masters.  
Johnson had taken the measure of namesake Zach 5 and 4 before defeating Alex Noren 3 and 2 in the quarter-finals.
Player Quotes
Jon Rahm: “The golf I've played the last three matches really has been very impressive, even to myself, and it seemed to get better as I played, which is something that doesn't happen often. I felt my confidence was growing.
"The first few matches my putter let me down, but I was hitting the ball great. Today my putter was rolling. I think that's one of the main reasons why I was able to do it the way I did it today.
“I have said many times, I really play to win. I compete to win. And my mind-set is winning. And once I get to tournaments I just focus on what I have to do, stick to my routine, breakfast, warm up, hit balls, and think about it each shot at a time.
"When it comes to it on the course, I really don't think about it. And once I'm done I try to avoid golf and social media, because otherwise I might get hung up on things like that and maybe not be mentally ready for what is to come.
“I try to stay humble, and honestly I never knew that I was going to be top four in both of the WGC's that I've ever played. That wasn't really on the plans. It really amazes me that I'm doing this, and I'm playing the semi-final tomorrow.”
Ross Fisher: “Getting to the Masters was a goal at the start of the week. After Wednesday, it was looking a little bit too far away but I hung in there and fought really, really hard.
"To get to where I have this week, I'm obviously delighted to be going to Augusta. Disappointed with this afternoon and to get knocked out, but it just one of those days. Just didn't quite have it on the greens.
 “I look forward to taking a week off next week. I think I'll probably stay over in the States, rest over at Lake Nona and hopefully Jo and the kids will join me at the end of the week.
"I’ll try to get to Augusta on Saturday to secure one of those nice tee off times for Wednesday. That would be a dream come true to have my kids, Harry and Eve, caddie for me in the par three contest.
"I’ve played there before when they were still too young, but now they are a great age of 7 and 5. It will be a truly memorable week.”
Dustin Johnson: “I thought I played well. I got off to a good start against Alex and was three up through three. I knew Alex was going to be a tough opponent.
"I played really well the rest of the front nine and was three-up at the turn. I gave him two holes there on 10 and 11. And he made a nice putt on 12, so got it back to all square. "But then I birdied 13, 15 and 16 to close out the match. I played really well, just hit one bad shot on 11. That was about it.”
 Full results available by clicking

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