'Then I Remembered Seve's Quote' - Rahm Reveals Inspiration Behind Augusta Recovery
Rahm battled back brilliantly during his first round at The Masters, as he sits in a three-way tie for the lead
After a four-putt double bogey on the very first hole, Jon Rahm sat at two-over-par. Over his next 17 holes, the Spaniard needed just 59 strokes as he came back in nine-under-par and a seven-under tournament total.
It was an incredible comeback from the former US Open winner and, now, speaking after his first round 65, Rahm has revealed the inspiration for the bounce-back round, with the 28-year-old using golf legend Seve Ballesteros to help him through the first hole struggles.
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Speaking about his reaction to the opening double, Rahm stated: "I remembered Seve's quote, I think it was here at the Masters, right, when he 4-putted. I just kept thinking to myself, 'Well, I miss, I miss, I miss, I make.' Move on to the next.
"I carried a little bit of that negative energy into the tee shot on 2, hit it about ten yards further than I usually do and moved on with my day. Again, if you're going to make a double-bogey, might as well do it on the first hole of the tournament when you have plenty of holes to make it up."
Revealing that he thought about the quote "on the way to the second tee", Rahm pummeled his drive almost 300-yards as he then fired an iron near the flag and two-putted for a birdie. From there, he birdied the third to get back to level, with a birdie-eagle-par finish rounding out his front nine.
Three pars then followed as he made his way into Amen Corner and, with five birdies in his last seven holes, he saw himself move into a share of the lead with fellow European Viktor Hovland, and also LIV golfer and four-time Major champion, Brooks Koepka.
At the beginning of 2023, Rahm found himself top of the World Rankings, with the Spaniard claiming three PGA Tour victories in just a five-week stretch. However, after a T39 finish at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Rahm was forced to withdraw from The Players Championship with illness before losing twice at the WGC - Dell Technologies Match Play.
Despite the last few results, Rahm was proud of the way he dug in at Augusta National, stating: "I'm mostly super happy with what I've done today, right. I didn't expect to hit a great 3-wood, a good second shot and four-putt the first hole, but to overcome that and shoot 9-under on the next 17 holes was something to be proud of. Hopefully I can just keep it going."
Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.
Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.
Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?
Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°
Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°
Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°
Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW
Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°
Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero
Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
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