Oliver Wilson talks major championships and the need for an English victory
Ryder Cup hero Oliver Wilson has expressed his beliefs as to why England still waits for a major golf victory.
The 32-year-old from Mansfield insisted that it is incredibly difficult to expect success from Englishmen regularly with only a small number of opportunities for victory every season.
He said: "It's going to happen, but at the end of the day it’s not that simple.
"Everyone tries to read into why Englishmen haven’t won majors but at the end of the day only it's four tournaments a year, you’ve got the best players in the world all trying to peak for the same tournaments.”
Wilson has been a pro on the European Tour since 2003 and
was part of a European team that included former world number ones Lee Westwood and Luke Donald in the 2008 Ryder Cup.
On spending time as a team at the event in Kentucky, Wilson believes there are pivotal factors in both players’ games as to why they are still yet to secure a major championship win.
“I can tell you the reason Lee (Westwood) hasn’t won and I think he would admit it is his short game,” said Wilson.
“I remember at Turnberry he had a bunker shot that he should’ve got up and down, if he’d got it up and down he would’ve won.”
This moment at the 2009 British Open was one that Westwood proclaimed he felt sick after snatching defeat from the jaws of victory in Scotland.
Westwood’s former teammate Wilson added: “Luke (Donald) has everything he needs to win a major but I think his length can hurt him because the lengths of the majors are usually quite long.”
However Wilson, who has played in 13 major championships in his
career is optimistic that is not just Donald and Westwood who could be in contention for England.
He claimed: “We’ve got Justin (Rose) who is fantastic, Poults (Ian Poulter) is playing better as well so we've got great chances.”
On his own experiences, the Augusta State graduate believes that
playing college golf in America rather than in England enhanced his game to the major championship level he finds himself at today.
“For me is it was the best thing I ever did,” Wilson added.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity, great facilities, great weather,
the coaching is improving but the fact you are out on the golf course every day in an extremely competitive environment is vital.”
The Englishman also compared his amateur experience in the US to
the organisation of golf coaching in England, he claims that the two structures vary incredibly.
The 32-year-old showcasing his skills at Valderrama
“The thing is if you are in the top five Englishmen in the country, as an amateur, you are given the backing financially to play in top tournaments all around the world," said Wilson.
“If you are not in those top five places you only meet with your coach three or four times a year.”
Wilson does not regret his decision to learn his trade in the US, even though he missed out on valuable time playing links golf in preparation for the British Open.
“Going to college in the US is making better players better,” said the Mansfield man.
“It’s more competitive and you can see that, the amount of Europeans that have gone to college in the states and have become really good pros is high. They are competing on the PGA Tour, European Tour and all over the world through doing that.
“You don’t play links golf over there (in the US) but if you’re a good golfer you’ll adapt.
“Being a professional golfer is about being able to adapt from day to day in different weather conditions, to week to week on different courses around the world.”
The Callaway ambassador also insists that the huge purses and prize money on offer do not affect his game, he claims that it is the atmosphere that makes a big difference from a regular European event with players who ply their trade on the PGA Tour being better prepared.
He added: “From the European tour to a major is a massive difference because it’s only really the BMW at Wentworth that has remotely close to the amount of people you would get at a major.
“In the US you are getting a similar kind of crowd, that’s another thing that helps the US players in the US majors. They go and play majors on courses they play PGA Tour events on.”
Wilson has just got back onto the tour after three months off with a broken wrist after falling over in the snow on his winter break.
Although he has missed out on this year’s Masters, he is hoping to qualify for the British Open in July and regain his tour card for this season.
The global game: Wilson's major championship appearences
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