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Matt Fitzpatrick offered some much needed light hearted relief when asked why he felt he was featured more prominently in press conferences and feature groups throughout the 2022 season: "It's because everyone is leaving the PGA Tour. That's why. They're digging up the dregs."
The Englishman has taken his game to a new level this year, with seven top-10 finishes in his twelve PGA Tour appearances; including a T5 at the PGA Championship at Southern Hills. Fitzpatrick also posted a much respected T14 at Augusta National.
The 27-year-old acknowledged his form when he offered a more serious response to his rise to American prominence: "I don't really know what it is, but you sort of come over to the US as a European and you don't necessarily get thrusted into the limelight straightaway compared to Europe, whereas if you're American you go over and you're straight into the TV groups.
"I think there is a little bit to do with guys that have jumped ship and gone to LIV, and I think at the same time I have played a little bit better, as well. I think it's a bit of both."
Fitzpatrick is one of many players who have spoken publicly about their "disinterest" in LIV Golf and whilst it may be the main talking point on the Tour right now, the Englishman gave some insight in that players don't seem to be confiding in one another: "No one I've spoke to personally has said, 'oh, yeah, by the way, I'm going to make the jump.' I don't know on that front," he said. "It's obviously the talk of the Tour at the minute. Everyone wants to know what's going on and who's going and who's not going."
Fitzpatrick enters the US Open in fine form but also finds himself in the unique position of being one of few players who have tasted success at Brookline. The Englishman captured the 2013 US Amateur at the Massachusetts venue and admitted he has had a watchful eye on this event for some time.
"This US Open is different for obvious reasons for me just because of winning the US Amateur here and just having such an amazing experience last time," Fitzpatrick said. "For me, I feel like this week is about just enjoying it and knowing that I do have a chance because, A, I've had success here before, even though it was a long time ago, and B, like you say, I've been playing well.
"I'm just really looking forward to it. It's been on my radar for years that I knew it was obviously coming here."
James joined Golf Monthly having previously written for other digital outlets. He is obsessed with all areas of the game – from tournament golf, to history, equipment, technique and travel. He is also an avid collector of memorabilia; with items from the likes of Bobby Jones, Tiger Woods, Francis Ouimet, Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Adam Scott and Ernie Els. As well as writing for Golf Monthly, James’ golfing highlight is fist bumping Phil Mickelson on his way to winning the Open Championship at Muirfield in 2013. James grew up on the east coast of England and is the third generation of his golfing family. He now resides in Leeds and is a member of Cobble Hall Golf Club with a handicap index of 1.7. His favourite films are The Legend of Bagger Vance and Tin Cup.
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