Tommy Fleetwood aiming for major lift-off in Open at Portrush

Tommy Fleetwood
Tommy Fleetwood

Tommy Fleetwood is determined to keep a sense of perspective as he looks to end the major season on a high at the Open Championship at Royal Portrush.

Fleetwood was expected to contend for one of the game's biggest prizes this year after his consistent displays in 2018, the Ryder Cup star finishing 17th in the Masters, second in the US Open after a record-equalling 63 in the final round, 12th in the Open and 35th in the US PGA.

However, so far this season his best result is a tie for 36th at Augusta National and the 28-year-old also failed to convert good chances to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational and Players Championship earlier in the year.

"It's easy to say it's disappointing but there's no disasters going on," Fleetwood told PA after a tie for 23rd in the Irish Open.

"I've not got loads out of the week and it's easy to be disappointed but you have to keep perspective.

"It's not like I've missed the cut by a mile and am going home trying to reinvent the wheel.

"I felt a lot more comfortable with my long game and I don't like being that person who is frustrated out on the course because I always feel I have a good sense of what's good and bad.

"It's just that when you know you're capable of more and you're not quite doing it, it's difficult.

"I know the Open is around the corner but whether it happens next week or further down the line, there's always massive things to play for and you just have to be patient and keep going and, more importantly, enjoy the game."

Fleetwood followed his week at Lahinch with a trip to Wimbledon on Monday and watched the Centre Court action from the Royal Box - saying, "(Roger) Federer is the only one I haven't seen play so that's my life complete!" - before heading home to Southport to practice.

His previous experience of Royal Portrush in the 2012 Irish Open is a "bit of a blur" as it came during his first full year on the European Tour, but Fleetwood will still expect to improve on his major performances in Northern Ireland.

"I've done well in them in the past and at certain times this year I've been really good in the majors," Fleetwood added.

"At the Masters I was not at my best game-wise but after two days I still had a good chance. The last day I was around top 10, top 15 having a really good Sunday, but backed up on the back nine.

"In the PGA for 30 holes I was the second best player in the field, for the last 42 I was probably the worst. At the US Open I struggled again but it's four tournaments of a year.

"Those are the ones you want to perform in and I can look at the positives but the overall aspect is that it's not been good enough. But I'd quite happily take the three finishes I've had so far and a win at the Open."

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