april 30th, 2015

Close call!

Overview

april 30th, 2015

Close call!

Today I played my fist match in the Cadillac Matchplay, the third World Golf Championship of the year. It's a bit different from other years because you first play three group matches, before the round-robin starts. Only the group winner makes it to the round-robin fase, so every match is very important.

I played the first game against Kevin Na and it wasn't easy. I didn't play my best golf but I did manage to go 1 up, because Kevin made a bogey on the fourth. After that the score stayed the same until the tenth hole.

On the tenth I missed my drive and could only make bogey from the left rough. Na made his par and so it was all square again. On twelve I thought I might go back to 1 up when I pitched in from 50 yards. Unfortunately Kevin holed a putt from 15 feet to match my birdie and halve the hole.

On the fourteenth I missed the fairway and couldn't reach the green. A bad bunker shot meant a double bogey and loss of the hole to go 1 down. One hole later I missed a short birdie putt to level the score and on sixteen Na made a good birdie, and I didn't. Two down with only two to go.

I wasn't planning on losing so I kept believing it was still possible to win this match. When Kevin made a mistake on the seventeenth that meant I could get it back to only one down. On the last hole I holed a tricky ten feet downhill slider to stay in the match and go into overtime.

After a good drive on the first extra hole I hit my approach in the greenside bunker. I hit my bunkershot to 15 feet, but missed the putt. Kevin missed the fairway on his drive and had a six feet putt to stay in the match. Fortunately for me, he missed the putt and I won the match 1 up.

It was a close call today, but I kept believing I could win the match and I holed a couple of good putts in the end to do so. I do have to step up my game for tomorrow!

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Joost Luiten is a four time winner on the European Tour. In 2015 he will play all Majors and World Golf Championships, and will mainly play on the PGA Tour. READ MORE ABOUT JOOST LUITEN

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