Mathieu Pavon's Unique Tattoo And The Reason Behind It

The Frenchman has an unusual tattoo on his right hand, but it proves as motivation as his career continues to hit new heights

Matthieu Pavon takes a shot at The Masters
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Matthieu Pavon’s confidence is at an all-time high. 

In the past twelve months he has secured his PGA card, won his first PGA Tour event and carded two eagles in the space of six holes in the opening round of the 2024 US Open.

The inspiration of such confidence comes in part from a unique tattoo etched on his right hand.

Photo of Pavon's putting grip

(Image credit: Getty Images)

“The saliva that flows now will become the tears of joy tomorrow” reads the permanent ink. Pavon himself told the PGA Tour the quote comes “from Havard”, but the original source is not known.

“I wanted to get a tattoo one day I was home and then I decided to write down a quote. It’s really a meaningful sentence for me” said Pavon.

“This is why I work hard every day to get those tears back when I lift the trophy.”

Pavon was visibly emotional after holing clutch birdie putt on the last to defeat Nicolai Hojgaard by one stroke at the Farmers Insurance Open in January. 

It wasn’t just an emotional moment for Pavon. The French commentary team broadcasting the tournament in his home country screamed in delight as the final putt dropped as Pavon became the first Frenchman ever to win on the PGA Tour.

Pavon bounced back from a costly bogey on the 17th and a wayward drive on 18 to birdie the par 5 18th at Torrey Pines in what proved to be the perfect start to his rookie year on the PGA Tour.

The Frenchman took home north of $1.6 million for his victory in California and is now exempt into all four Major championships this year. The saliva that flowed proved to be worth the sacrifice. 

Conor Keenan
News Writer

Conor Keenan is a freelance writer, joining Golf Monthly in the spring of 2024. Hailing from Newcastle, Northern Ireland, Conor is lucky to have Royal County Down as his home golf course. Golf has been a constant in his life, beginning to play the game at the age of four and later becoming a caddy at RCD at just eleven years old. Now 26, Conor has caddied over 500 rounds in a 12-year-long caddying career at one of the best courses in the world. Playing to a four handicap, you’re likely to find him on his local driving range trying (and failing) to hit a Shane Lowry-esc stinger that helped him win The 148th Open Championship at Royal Portrush. 

In the bag:

Driver: Ping G

3 wood: Callaway Epic

Hybrid: Ping G425

Irons: Mizuno JPX 900 Tour

Wedges: Taylormade Milled Grind 52,56,60

Putter: Scotty Cameron Circa 62