Spanish star Jon Rahm has revealed how RAPPING helped him master English.
Speaking ahead of this week’s US Open, where he is one of the favourites to land the year’s second major at Erin Hills, the 22-year-old said that he realised he needed to get a better command of the language when he moved from the Basque Country in his homeland to attend Arizona State University.
“I'll never forget my first class,” said Rahm. “I went to micro economic principles. The class had about 365 students, the teacher was speaking with a microphone, and I could not understand a single word. The first month, it was a little bit uphill.”
Things took a turn for the better after one of his fellow players on the ASU Sun Devils golf team introduced him to rap.
“Memorising those lyrics helped out with enunciation and pronunciation,” he added. “Having to be able to say those words at a fast pace helped me out a lot. I'm not kidding.
“[Before that] it was hard. When people talked to me it was a long process for me to translate that sentence from English to Spanish, understand it, think what I wanted to say and translate it from Spanish to English. It was at least a ten to 15-second process where I just felt really awkward. A lot of times I responded yes or no when the question was nothing related to yes or no. It really was a struggle.”
After a blistering start to his professional career, which included a maiden PGA Tour win at the Farmers Insurance Open in January, the world No.10 is going off as low as 18/1 to win this week’s US Open – a year on from being the low amateur at Oakmont.
“It's truly amazing to me to just look how things have changed,” he added. “I think I've learned a lot as a player. I’ve gained a lot of confidence. My ball striking has improved a lot. I hope I can keep it going.”
Rahm gets his title tilt underway on Thursday at 2.51pm (UK) alongside Rickie Fowler and Hideki Matsuyama.