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Thursday, May 12, 2022
Home Sports GOLF Viktor Hovland was trapped in an Oklahoma snowstorm for three days

Viktor Hovland was trapped in an Oklahoma snowstorm for three days


Viktor Hovland has every reason to smile.

Then again, it’s rare he does not smile. Still, his play of late has him beaming.

In his last five worldwide starts, he has three wins and a tie for fourth. His steady rise up the world rankings that’s been going on two years now reached its highest point when he moved to No. 3 with his win in the Dubai Desert Classic the last week of January.

And he’s 24.

“It’s kind of crazy,” Hovland said about reaching such heights so quickly as he spoke ahead of the WM Phoenix Open. “It’s hard to think that way when you’re constantly traveling and playing tournaments. You do not really have a lot of time to just kind of sit down and think about that too much. It’s always, ‘Okay, I’ve got to work on my chipping,’ I got to work out. ‘ Tee time, pro-am, it’s just go, go, go, go all the time. ”

Last week, however, before heading to the warmth and blue-lit skies of Arizona for this week’s gathering at TPC Scottsdale – home to the wildest week on the PGA Tour – Hovland got snowed in at his home in Oklahoma.

Locked in the house for three days, Hovland reflected on his recent run of stellar play – coming back from six shots at the start of the final round to win in Dubai and in The Bahamas at the Hero World Challenge. In his five-tournament stretch, he also won the World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba, his second win there, and tied for fourth in the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

His only finish outside the top 4 was a tie for 30th in the Sentry Tournament of Champions.

“I was just in there just in a coma just kind of letting it all sink in,” Hovland said of his snow-induced lockdown. “It’s nice to have kind of moments like that where you just kind of do not do anything and relax, but I try not to get too caught up in the moment either. It’s always, you know, think about the processes, trying to get better, and, yeah, enjoy the process. ”

He simply is not satisfied. The self-professed miserable chipper of the ball to one who is less miserable around the greens. But he keeps working at it, and as his resume shows, overcomes his weaknesses with his strengths – outstanding driver, superb iron player, attitude.

Despite his recent three wins, he saw holes in his game. And will work to correct.

“It’s been very much up and down for all those tournaments, because some of those tournaments I feel like I have not played my best, but then not taking advantage of kind of the good rounds that I was able to, you know, get together and then I had some not-so-good rounds, but it ended up being good enough, and then a crazy finish, ”he said. “It’s just been a lot of stuff going on. I feel like I’m hitting the ball well, so if I can just kind of keep it in play and get the putter going, I like my chances this week. ”

In his only other start in the WM Phoenix Open, he missed the cut in 2020.

“I was pretty green when I showed up here two years ago, and especially with all the people that are out here, it was certainly a process trying to get comfortable,” he said. “But it feels like it’s so long ago.”

He certainly is a different player these days, figuring out things along the way, getting the ball into the hole as quickly as he can, smiling all the way.



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