Thursday, August 29, 2013


Luke Donald is proving how determined he is to break through in the majors by changing his swing coach for the first time in 16 years.
The 35-year-old has revealed to Telegraph Sport  that he has employed the services of Chuck Cook, the Texan who oversees the recent USPGA Championship winner, Jason Dufner.
Donald’s move will surprise many in the game, considering how close he is to Pat Goss.
The Englishman has worked with Goss since he joined Northwestern University in Chicago in 1997.
Since then he has topped the world rankings, won 14 professional titles and amassed more than £25million in on-course earnings.
Donald will retain Goss for his famed putting and chipping advice and the pair remain on good terms.
“I’ve gone with Chuck as I want to make my long game more consistent to improve my chances in the majors,” Donald said.
Donald was the No1 little over a year ago, but has fallen to 11th.
However, it is his continued shortfall in the majors that has caused Donald to act.
He played himself into contention at the US Open in June, but it was the sight of his playing partner, Justin Rose, producing a tee-to-green masterclass on the way to victory which confirmed Donald’s burgeoning suspicions.
“I’ve come to realise that majors require a different philosophy,” he said.
“Most weeks the best putter wins; but majors are an exception.
"You have to putt better than average, which, week in week out I’m going to do.
"But the next step is to hit more fairways and greens at majors.”
Initially, Donald was tempted by Sean Foley’s ever increasing stature.
Yet, despite being tempted to include Donald in his stable, the Canadian coach did not feel he could donate the requisite time or attention to another high-profile client after adding Lee Westwood to Rose, Hunter Mahan and Tiger Woods.
Cook is an interesting alternative. The 68-year-old was, apparently, Foley’s recommendation and has a CV boasting six majors won collectively by Payne Stewart, Corey Pavin, Mark Brooks and Tom Kite in the Nineties.
But it is Cook’s effect on Dufner which has been most impressive. Dufner was ranked outside the world’s top 650 when he joined Cook five years ago.
Donald is in transition mode, but will still be looking for a decent showing in the second of the FedEx Cup play-off events, the Deutsche Bank Championship in Boston, which begins on Friday.
The top 70 on the points list go through to the penultimate event, the BMW Championship in a fortnight’s time and from there, the top 30 progress to the Tour Championship, where the $10million FedEx Cup bonus is up for grabs.
Donald is in 54th place. Woods, the leader, is expected to play suffering back spasms at last week’s Barclays Championship.
Meanwhile, at Celtic Manor, Europe captain Paul McGinley will begin the Ryder Cup points race when he is first to tee off at the ISPS Handa Wales Open on Thursday, the first counting event in qualification for the match at Gleneagles next year.
Francesco Molinari, Darren Clarke, Chris Wood, Ross Fisher and last week’s winner, Tommy Fleetwood, are in the field.



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