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By his own high standards, 2019 has not been a year to remember for Henrik Stenson.

The former Open champion has struggled on both sides of the Atlantic, currently lying 32nd on the Race To Dubai after finishing 90th on the FedEx Cup standings.

Now, as he prepares to play in the Houston Open – his first start on the PGA Tour since the WGC-FedEx St Jude Invitational at the start of August – the Swede has opened up on his recent struggles.

“I haven’t played that much golf in the last couple of months,” said Stenson. “I played a lot up until the WGC in Memphis. That was my 18th tournament for the year and I was pretty worn out and I needed some time off.

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“I felt like I was just playing golf for playing golf in Memphis and that’s not what you want to feel when you’re at one of the biggest tournaments of the year. You don’t want to feel like you’re just going through the motions. I guess at 43, even though it was a very hard decision not to come back and play the FedExCup Playoffs, I just felt like I had not much left to give. 

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“Even if you play okay, if you’re not mentally there, you know, I just felt like I needed the time to recharge and hopefully we’re a little fresh now than we were back in early August.”

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Asked to compare the state of his game to when he won the Claret Jug at Royal Troon in 2016, he said it was “not even close”.

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“I don’t feel like I’m going to go out there and shoot 63s in the final round at the moment, but it’s a game you’ve got to have patience, you’ve got to keep on working away,” he added.

“There’s certainly some parts of the game that’s not too bad but, all in all, I don’t feel like I’m super confident with my game at the moment.”


author headshot

Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

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