There’s a reason we have a joke amongst the Tour that we’re called the ‘River to the LPGA’. Throughout my 6 years on Tour, we have had a rather high number of rounds, and even tournaments, cancelled due to large amounts of rain or storms. This week was a real shame because the weather had been so good all week, albeit, a little hot and humid on Friday and Saturday. The course was in great shape and there was lot on the line with the first two spots getting exemptions into the Evian Championship in September. Unfortunately, there is very little we can do when this happens. I know the tour staff work tirelessly to try and get as much as the tournament in as possible, but sometimes it’s out of everyone’s control. On Sunday, we got over 3 inches of rain in just under 3 hours. It was quite incredible. The course had become unplayable and so they had no choice but to cancel the final round and just pay people according to their position after two rounds.
I finally feel I was heading in the right direction this week. There’s no doubt I’ve been frustrated this year, but after missing the cut last week in Rochester, I decided to try and figure out what I could be doing better. It was actually my host family in Rochester that helped me start making some new goals and breaking them down. I started by looking at my statistics to see what could need improving. My putting stats are lower than they’ve ever been, which doesn’t surprise me, because I’ve really felt like I’ve been putting well this year. My bunker play has also been very good. So next I turned my attention to greens in regulation. Yikes. This statistic could be a lot better. If you think of it this way, if you don’t hit the green, your birdie chances are considerably lower. Then I had to think, what are my reasons for not hitting the green? First of all, I don’t hit nearly enough fairways. I would partly put this down to equipment changes and swing modifications etc, so I’m not too worried about that. That will improve with time and getting more comfortable with the new shaft. I would also say my course management could be improved. If I’m in between clubs, I tend to opt for the lower one and swing harder. This is just me. Everyone is different with this. However, I started to realize that this could actually be hindering me. When I have to swing hard with a club, I also have to make an almost perfect swing to make good contact and to get the distant I’m hoping for. I’d imagine, more often than not, this doesn’t work as well as I’d like to think it does. Along with this, I think I could also choose when to go flag hunting, and not, a little better. Quite a few times I’ve missed the green on the short side, giving myself a difficult chip, resulting in a number of bogeys. These are unforced errors that need to be eliminated in order to get better results. It certainly seemed to work this week! The first round I had 2 birdies and two bogeys, and the second round 3 birdies and 3 bogeys. Pretty consistent, right? I’m feeling good about this new mindset as it is really helping make golf a lot simpler. I can’t help but think that once the bogeys are eliminated, and I make a couple more putts, you turn 72 into 69/68.
The other thing I tried to work on this week was my focus. I’ve done a lot of work on this with my coach in the last few months. We’ve also tried to tame ‘thinking Olivia’, because that never helps either. However, I realized that maybe I was ‘under’ thinking. Targets and visualizing of shots had become a little vague, in my opinion. I was maybe a little ‘blah’ out on the golf course. I had taken not thinking to the extreme! So this week, I worked hard to really zone in on my process and stayed focused on the correct things. It certainly seemed to help as my greens in regulation went up by about 3 or 4 each round, which is quite significant.
Golf is a funny game. It’s probably one of the few sports in the world that can never be perfected. There is always something that can be done better. It’s quite frustrating really, but that’s why we love it. As professional golfers we continued to strive to be better everyday, and that’s what keeps us coming back.
I was up bright and early this morning for my flight to Kansas City for our next tournament. I’ve never been here before, so I’m excited. I hear a lot of great things about it, especially the food! I’m also looking forward to playing the course as I’ve heard the golf course is beautiful, but the greens could be quite challenging. So it’ll be certainly be another interesting week on the Road to the LPGA.
Don’t forget you can follow me on social media- Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and I’ve finally joined the Snapchat world. Really not sure why but I thought I’d give it a go. People are always raving about it!