Chapman draws on Major memories in Omaha

7/8/2013 2:02:00 PM
Roger Chapman - 2012 US Senior Open Champion  (Getty Images)
Roger Chapman - 2012 US Senior Open Champion (Getty Images)
Double Senior Major winner Roger Chapman will recall some treasured memories when he defends his title in the US Senior Open Championship at Omaha Country Club this week.

The Englishman claimed a sublime victory at Indianwood Golf and Country Club, which came only six weeks after he had landed his first Senior Major title in the US Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid.

Armed with the confidence garnered from that stunning triumph at Harbor Shores, Chapman was able to post a magnificent final round 66 to overhaul Germany’s Bernhard Langer to win by two shots and prove he was no one-hit wonder.

“It was probably the best round of golf I’ve played under that amount of pressure,” said the 54 year old, who comfortably won the 2012 European Senior Tour Order of Merit.

“I was in the second to last group out and Bernhard was behind me. I birdied the second and then he double-bogeyed the second. All of a sudden that four-shot lead had gone to one. My eyes lit up. And I am sure everyone else’s eyes lit up because it was game on then.

“I just played steady golf, hitting the fairways and knocking it on the green. I birdied the seventh to tie the lead and then the 11th to go one or two in front. From there on in I just felt great. I said to myself, ‘I’m going to win this’.

“I felt so much more confident that I was going to close the deal. That was the difference between [my mindset at] Harbor Shores and Indianwood. But I didn’t know it was going to come so quickly after Harbor Shores. I wanted to prove to myself that I wasn’t a one-hit wonder. To win one six weeks later is fairytale stuff.”

Chapman closed out the victory in swashbuckling style, playing a quite brilliant tee shot on the par three 17th which resulted in a tap-in birdie.

“I had about 202 yards from what I recall, and the pin was on the back tier,” he said. “I hit a shot that drew nicely and was all over the flag. It ran up to about six inches. It was the shot of a lifetime for me.”

Colin Montgomerie, the eight time European Tour Number One, will make his debut in a Senior Major Championship, having turned 50 at the end of June.

He will tee up in the US$2.6million event alongside Tom Watson, the 2014 US Ryder Cup captain, and Langer, who bidding is bidding for his second win in the event, having triumphed in 2010.

New Zealand’s Peter Fowler, the winner of the John Jacobs Trophy in 2011, Englishman Barry Lane and Paul Wesselingh, who won the Bad Ragaz PGA Seniors Open last week, are all attempting to win their first Senior Major.