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Jon Rahm’s form has come under increasing scrutiny in recent weeks. Since the World No1’s last win in the US Open last June, he has had two missed cuts and finished The Players Championship tied for 55th, with his putting game under most scrutiny.
That focus on Rahm's putting intensified during the tournament at TPC Sawgrass, when he missed a 10-inch putt – the shortest of his PGA Tour career. Rahm blamed that miss on sweaty hands, but it’s not the only issue he’s had on the greens this year. He also struggled with his putter at times during both the Genesis Invitational and WM Phoenix Open. Rahm is competing in the WCG-Match Play this week, and speaking ahead of the tournament at Austin Country Club, the Spaniard didn't hide his frustration when the topic inevitably turned to his putting game.
“I’m kind of getting tired of answering the same question every single week. When you’re No. 1 off the tee and top 10 in strokes gained approach, my putting stats are not going to be top 20. It’s absolutely impossible unless I’m winning every single week by eight. Kind of how it goes. Is it as good as it could be? No, but I think it shows in the stats worse than it actually feels just because I’m hitting so many greens and hitting it so good. Again, I feel like I’ve said it a few times. It’s not as bad as it looks. It feels a lot better than it looks. Maybe I haven’t gotten the results yet, but I’m not worried about it.
Despite Rahm's apparent lack of concern around his putting, his recent stats are unimpressive. Last year, he finished 42nd in Strokes Gained with .331, while this year to date he's in 139th with .115. This is alarming considering Rahm has always been known for his excellent all-round game. Indeed, his short game and putting until relatively recently had been impressive, in keeping with the long-standing reputation of Spanish players including Sergio Garcia, José María Olazábal and Seve Ballesteros.
Even if Rahm remains unworried about his putting, there’s little doubt that it will be under increasingly intense focus as The Masters approaches. In recent years, Rahm has shown great consistency at Augusta National, posting top 10 finishes in every tournament since 2018. Rahm's the favourite to claim the Green Jacket in 2022, but that will be a daunting task if his putting game's not at its best.
Mike has 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on sports such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the sport’s most newsworthy stories. Originally from East Yorkshire, Mike now resides in Canada, where the nearest course is less than a mile from his home. It’s there where he remains confident that, one of these days, he’ll play the 17th without finding the water. Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.
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