Like just about everyone else, Danny Willett’s swing coach, Mike Walker, thought the Masters was over when Jordan Spieth marched to the 10th tee with a five-shot lead.
So he went to bed.
“But then an hour later, my phone went mad,” Walker said in this story in the Telegraph (UK) newspaper. “I turned on the TV and Spieth was just finishing off his seven on the 12th. Danny was leading and I was like, ‘wow.’”
Walker and mentor Pete Cowen had left Augusta during the second round and headed back home to Europe. They were scheduled to fly to last week's European Tour event in Spain on Monday morning, but Walker stayed back.
“I had to have a few beers, and then Liz (Walker’s wife) cracked open the Prosecco,” Walker said, according to the report. “Even after all that, I couldn’t get to sleep. So much stuff was going through my head. I didn’t hear the alarm.
“I spoke to Dan about 9 a.m. UK time, which was 4 a.m. over there and he was still going strong. We were both in a state of shock.”
Walker and Willett have been working together since 2013. The 37-year-old instructor has developed with Cowen a strong stable of promising English talent, from Matt Fitzpatrick to Chris Wood to the newest Masters champion.
When Walker finally arrived at Valderamma, “I shook my right hand off,” he told the Telegraph. “I must have cheesed off some of the players I was supposed to be teaching.”