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Player Blog: Daniel Gavins
Player Blog

Player Blog: Daniel Gavins

In this week’s Player Blog presented by Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Daniel Gavins reflects on returning to a venue he has enjoyed previous success ahead of the ISPS Handa Championship in Spain and what goals he has set himself for the 2022 DP World Tour season.

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I have played Infinitum, previously known as Lumine Golf Club, probably six times before, so I know The Lakes course well. I have got some nice memories of the course. I won Second Stage of the DP World Tour Qualifying School on my way to earning my card in 2015. I was 19 under when I won Second Stage and I have done well here at both The Lakes and The Hills courses in Final Stage where I regained my Tour card in 2018.

It is always nice to come back to a course that you have done well at. However, I can’t really remember every shot that I played in 2015! I was consistently shooting five or six under every round. I can remember it being sunny and less windy than it usually is around here. It tends to blow quite a bit, especially in the afternoon being on the coast but I can remember the weather being quite nice. The rough was probably half as thick as it is now so it was a little bit easier.

This week, so far, the course is playing a lot tougher. The rough is probably the thickest I have ever seen it. Keeping the ball in the fairways is obviously a big help. On quite a few holes, if you miss the fairway, you are just chipping out. Also, previously the second hole was a par five every time I played it, so it is going to be weird playing it as a par four this week.

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So far this season, I have had one top ten at the Magical Kenya Open presented by Absa and a couple of nice results at the Rolex Series events so it is a decent start. I feel like I have played quite nicely. I am consistently making cuts which is nice. I am comfortably positioned in the top 60 of the DP World Tour Rankings which is where I want to be at the end of the year. I am pleased with the start of the year, there is still a lot of hard work to be done but it is going nicely so far.

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Reflecting on my maiden DP World Tour title at the 2021 ISPS HANDA World Invitational presented by Modest! Golf Management, there is no doubt it has given me extra confidence and shown me that I can win on Tour. I was seven shots back going into the final round, but I played really well to go bogey free on the Sunday at Galgorm Castle Golf Club. I got it going early on, holed quite a few nice putts which got me under par for the round so I knew I was moving up the leaderboard nicely. To hold on and keep pushing to make a few more birdies coming in just shows I can win.

Finishing top 60 in the DP World Tour Rankings and trying to climb into the top 100 on the Official World Golf Ranking is what I am looking for this year. But I am trying not to put too much pressure on myself. It is my first year with full playing rights so I can pick and choose which events I play in which is nice. 

Since my last event at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, I have got back into the gym five or six times a week over the last few weeks. I feel like I was missing that, I was getting a bit frustrated on the course. I think the reason for that is not doing as much gym work, so it is good to get back into the gym. Even if you feel a bit tired, you are pushing yourself to get it done and you feel a lot better after it. During the break, I have done quite a lot of work with my short game as I felt like it was not where I wanted it to be. It was a lot related to my pre-shot routine for my short game rather than my technique. I have also done a little bit on my putting, but it has mainly been gym work over the last couple of weeks.

It is nice to get back into Europe. Two weeks in Spain followed by the Betfred British Masters at The Belfry, which is an hour and a half away from my house in England. It is obviously less tiring than travelling to further places abroad on the Tour.

Away from golf, I went to the Crucible Theatre at the weekend to see the World Snooker Championship. I have been to the Crucible twice now and to the Barbican in York for the UK Snooker Championship once. It is always nice to watch Ronnie O’Sullivan and Mark Williams play. They are both exciting players to watch. It was nice to go behind the scenes, look behind the stage and see how the tournament is run. Ronnie played nicely and won 10-5, having been 3-0 down. I have always played snooker, but through Covid-19 I didn’t get to play much. I have made a half century break which is nice, but I wouldn’t say I was anywhere near as good as I was! You obviously need a lot of time to play snooker, so if you don’t play it becomes a very difficult sport, but I have always enjoyed it.

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