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Thursday, 28 January 2016

Where is Matteo Now?

I've been thinking about Matteo Manassero lately.  I wrote an article on him about a year ago, talking about how this golfing phenom had apparently lost his game by trying to get more distance.  After a year, this can't miss kid has fallen to 684 in the world golf rankings.

For those who may have forgotten, this was a kid who was the youngest to win a European Tour event at the age of 17, who had four European Tour victories by the age of 20, was the youngest to win the British Amateur, the youngest to win the silver medal as low amateur at the Open, the youngest to make the cut at the Masters, finishing 36th and low amateur.  This kid was about as good as we've ever seen as a seventeen year old.  Now, he's in some kind of golfing purgatory.

His last win was the prestigious BMW PGA championship at Wentworth in 2013.  At that point there seemed, to me at least, to be no stopping this twenty year old.  Then, someone apparently convinced him, or he convinced himself, that if he could only get a bit longer, he could be even better.  

The last time I saw him play, which was quite some time ago, the announcer said Matteo had gained at least twenty yards off the tee.  The bad news was he couldn't seem to find a fairway.  But, at least he was apparently "striping it" on the range.  He's still a young man, and I hope he can find his way back as others have done--Lee Westwood comes to mind.  But it just all seems such a shame.  Golf is a strange old game.