Irishman Smyth Comfortable on US Courses


Des Smyth is back in the States again. The Irishman has done the Irish Jig for much of the three years he has been a Champions Tour regular, spending equal time on tour and back home as he juggles the playing schedule.
This week hes playing the Commerce Bank Championship on Long Island, New York. But he says theres not much adjustment in playing the courses in Europe and the courses in the U.S.
Golf doesnt change that much, Smyth says.
Maybe years ago it might have been an adjustment. But there are so many of your star players of the past building golf courses in Ireland and in Europe. We play those courses all the time. Where they holding the Ryder Cup, its an Arnold Palmer course. Jack has built a course in Ireland - Mount Juliet. They are very similar to the courses you build out here. We get to play them all.
The links courses, of course, are the courses for which Great Britain is known. And we still have links courses, Smyth hastily adds. I play links all the time because I live just a mile from a course called County Louth where they held the Irish Open last year. When Im at home, I practice and play on links all the time.
So its a myth that British professional golf is strictly links golf, he says. Only the major events are played on links courses (British Open and British Seniors). You dont get to play many links any more. Its a pity really, because its great golf.
Smyth has finished in the top 10 in his last two events after winning twice this year. He took a three-week break to return home, came back last week and finished in a tie for seventh at the Bank of America Championship after he finished in a tie for sixth last month at the Senior PGA Championship.
Its been a great year for me, said the Irishman. The first year I came over and I played well, things went very well, but I didnt win. Last year I didnt play well and I struggled to keep my playing rights. Coming out this year, I knew I had to do something to get my away from the danger zone.
And that he did. But he has been up-and-down. What he needs to improve on his consistency.
Yeah, I seem to have lost that a bit, he said. But maybe its because Ive relaxed a little. I just feel I need to pick it up now.
Of course, if youre going to finish in the top 10, youve got to put three good rounds together. And certainly if youre going to win, youve got to put three low rounds together.
'This tour isnt for everybody because you have to have a lot of confidence in yourself to come over here and get through that school, because its a tough school. I think only the best players are getting through it. Probably they are a little bit afraid of that, you know.'
Related links:
  • Full Coverage - Commerce Bank Championship