Tyrrell Hatton won a tournament for the third year in a row last year, but he admitted on Wednesday that he’s hard to stay motivated.
Hatton admitted in a brutally honest self-evaluation ahead of his title defense at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship that he’s never been a range rat, but that getting up for practice sessions is particularly difficult now.
“Some men obviously like their practice and have a solid routine in that regard, and they play games and do other things to try to make it interesting.” But that’s something I’ve always fought with,” he told reporters. “I don’t pay attention to it at all, therefore I’m not really concentrated while I’m there.” It’s possible that it’ll be a waste of time.
“It’s almost like going through the motions when I warm up before I go play; just going through every other club in the bag, and that’s kind of me on the range.” That’s how I’ve been for a long time in general. However, it appears that getting myself to the range to go through that process is becoming increasingly difficult.
“Hatton’s lack of committed, serious practice time may explain in part why his form has deteriorated. He has plummeted from 10th to 22nd in the world rankings over the last year while struggling in the majors, losing two cuts and never placing higher than 18th.
Hatton recently travelled to Orlando for a two-week boot camp in order to prepare his body and mind for the new year. “I worked quite hard in the gym for the entire year in 2020, and I was in a lot better fitness position. I felt more at ease in my own skin, which I believe helped me play better golf.”
But what about the last six months? “I wasn’t training at all.” I wasn’t very enthusiastic about practicing. I was just trying to get back into it. Find the drive to go ahead and do it. In terms of training, everything has gone well. I’m still figuring out how to practice and what constitutes “going through the motions” when I get there. But that is, without a doubt, a work in progress.”
Hatton describes himself as a “fair-weather golfer” who struggled to get out and practice during the winter months even as a junior. He preferred to stay inside or play soccer.
He knows a change is needed now that he’s 30, and in the prime of his athletic career.
“I’ve always said that I prefer playing to practicing on the range,” he remarked. “And while I’m at home, I haven’t spent a lot of time on the course.” So that’s something I’ll definitely have to go back into and see if I can find some happiness and a reason to do it.”