Rolex Series

Ewen Ferguson reveals home inspiration as he returns to Scotland fresh from victory

Ewen Ferguson emulated illustrious countrymen Sandy Lyle and Colin Montgomerie by winning last week's BMW International Open but it was other sporting Scots that he drew inspiration from as he fought back from recent illness to claim his third DP World Tour title.


Struggling with vertigo this season, Ferguson feared for his career when the symptoms first started, but watching his friend Robert MacIntyre's phenomenal victory at the RBC Canadian Open on the PGA TOUR last month gave him the motivation he needed to return to the course.

"When it happened, I was in bed for around 10 days and I thought 'oh no," he said. "I managed to get back to Scotland, seeing doctors and no-one really knew what it was and I thought 'oh, this could be really bad'.

"But then when I was sitting in the house one Sunday night I was watching the PGA TOUR, Canadian Open, Bob (MacIntyre) and his dad (on the bag), and I thought 'wow, how amazing is that? That’s unbelievable'.

"I had goosebumps watching it and I was like, 'I need to get back out and play'.

"It was just so fun to watch that and obviously because you know him and you know his dad and you know what he's like, that’s just incredible and I wanted to go back and play."

Ferguson's struggle with illness meant he had to retire at the European Open in June after posting a first-round 72.

"I went back to play in Germany and really struggled in the first round but shot one under so thought 'I’ll get away with it'," he added. 

"The next day in the morning warming up I phoned my dad and I was like 'I don’t think I can play'. I was just struggling with my eyesight. Your eyesight goes. 

"My dad says 'right, just pack it up' and I was like 'no, I’m here, I’m going to give it a go' and I literally couldn’t make a putt. The whole everything, the putter line on the top of my putter was blurry.

"I came off and going to the airport I thought I’m going to be back on the Challenge Tour at some point.

"That’s what’s tough about golf, I think. All of a sudden you think 'I can’t play so I can’t keep my card'. It’s just really, really difficult.

"But then I’ve managed to find some solutions and some medication that works. It’s lowered the symptoms so much and now that I've had my MRIs and I know it's not something really serious, it does calm me down knowing when you get it and you know this is going on, just relax."

Ferguson then bounced back with two top-30s in late June before Sunday's spectacular two-shot victory at Golfclub München Eichenried saw him return to the winner's circle for the first time in almost two years.

Scottish stars from a range of sports were quick to congratulate him, and another of his famous countrymen continued to inspire him from afar.

Ferguson said: "Bob texted me as soon as I won saying 'amazing win', and I texted him back saying 'thanks for inspiring me' and the rest. He's like, no, no, no, we all push each other on because we do, there's so many of us now.

"Loads of people that played for Scotland in the European Championship got in touch. John McGinn just messaged me there actually but I’ve not opened it yet.

"But Scott McTominay, obviously loads of Rangers players, Jamie Murray and a lot of tennis people as well - I like tennis a lot.

"But I was actually watching that tribute video to Andy Murray (following his Wimbledon exit), I had goosebumps watching that, it was unbelievable.

"When Wimbledon's on, from growing up, it was always Andy Murray, Andy Murray, Andy Murray. Like it’s just a wee guy from Dunblane, isn’t it, and how he’s done that well is unbelievable.

"It does make you think, 'if he can do that, just a normal boy, we can all do really well'."

Last week's win also secured two weeks of golf on home soil, as he booked his spot at next week's Open Championship at Royal Troon.

But first his attention turns to this week's Genesis Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club, where he will play alongside Major winners Matt Fitzpatrick and Jordan Spieth in the first two rounds as the Rolex Series returns to the DP World Tour.

He said: "It's just nice coming back to Scotland in general. Even when I'm practising in Glasgow, and everyone knows who you are and all the superintendents of the course are coming up and asking me what I think for the course, what they could do better. 

"It's really nice to deal with that when I come back and obviously with the strength of the field this week and a lot of world ranking points up for grabs, that's kind of where you want to be at."

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