Matthew Fitzpatrick has a bit of a conflict.
The 26-year-old Englishman shares the 54-hole lead with Thomas Detry at the Scottish Open, which earns him Sunday’s final tee time (1:16 p.m. local time) at the Renaissance Club in North Berwick, Scotland. However, he’s also got tickets to potentially witness history some 400 miles away on the same day.
Fitzpatrick bought tickets for he, his brother Alex and two friends to the UEFA Euro 2020 Final between England and Italy on Sunday night at Wembley Stadium in London. The match is scheduled to kick off at 8 p.m. local time, less than three hours after the anticipated finish at the Scottish of 5:15 p.m.
“I’m going,” Fitzpatrick told Golf Digest’s John Huggan on Saturday. “Regardless. I’m just going to try. Even if just for the second half, I’ll get in. My mates will be there. My brother and three of my pals and I’ll just join up with them. It’s quite funny because, literally the whole week once England got through on Wednesday, I was just telling the lads: I have to try and go. I don’t care how, I’ll just get there and, hopefully, the tee times work out.
"I literally could not have put myself in a worse position, though. I know I’m going to switch my phone on and I’m going to [have] a million texts from my mates. You couldn’t write it. The funny thing is that, deep down, I just knew it was going to happen.”
Fitzpatrick, who plans to fly from Scotland after finishing play and then drive the remaining distance to the stadium, added that the impending match has helped take some pressure off of him in an event that includes many of the world’s best players, including Jon Rahm and Xander Schauffele, who are both in contention with one round to play, as well.
“This does show me that, in a way, you have to go out there and not care,” Fitzpatrick said. “That’s been a big thing, to be honest. Every time something hasn’t gone my way, I’m genuinely thinking: Oh well, I’ve got more chance of getting to the match. I think it just shows that, in my personal attitude, I have to be more like that. It’s just golf at the end of the day.”