22 Nov 2021 | Professional golf |
Herbert not 'forgetting about' Europe
by Dane Heverin
Lucas Herbert will have the best of both worlds next year as he intends to balance his schedule between the PGA Tour and the new DP World Tour.
The boy from Bendigo won on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean this year - and he has status on each major tour as a result - but he will not be abandoning Europe in 2022.
“I don’t want to turn my back on Europe and I’d like to play as many Rolex Series events as I can. It was the European Tour that helped me out when I first came out on Tour in extending me invitations to play,” Herbert told Australian golf writer Bernie McGuire for Golf, by TourMiss.
“Those invitations kick-started what I have been able to do in recent years, so I don’t want people to be thinking now that I have my PGA Tour card I will be forgetting about the new DP World Tour.”
Herbert wrapped up his breakthrough season at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai last night - he came T21 - and he now returns home for the first time since January with clear plans for next year.
“I’m just looking forward to getting back, having a few weeks off and then heading to Hawaii for the Sentry Tournament of Champions,” Herbert said.
“I’ll play Hawaii, the Farmers Insurance, Phoenix and the Genesis Invitational so it’s a very nice early new season schedule as I am not going to play too many events in a row to be nice and ready to play The Masters.”
After the completion of the three US majors, the 2020 Irish Open champion will be heading back to the Emerald Isle to defend his crown and possibly play his way to St Andrews.
“I’m starting my season in the States but I will be back to Ireland to defend the Irish Open,” he said.
“It’s important to me to defend the tournament and I see from the new 2022 schedule it’s returning to Mt Juliet and that’s great news, so I’ll be going there looking to win for a second time.
“I’m also not into The Open, so I may need to win to get myself in The Open at St Andrews.”
Herbert secured his place at The Masters and the US PGA Championship with his victory at the PGA Tour’s Butterfield Bermuda Championship, but he needs to remain inside the top 50 in the world - he is currently No. 45 in the Official World Golf Rankings - to guarantee his spot in the field at The Open and the US Open.
In order to maintain, and hopefully improve upon, his ranking, the Victorian has declared the need for greater consistency in his game - despite winning on the PGA Tour already this season, he has missed the cut in his other three events.
“I need to get better as a golfer to have every golf course suit me and I just shouldn’t turn up to a venue and go: ‘oh, this place doesn’t suit’,” he said.
“I need to get better so that every tournament venue suits me and if a golf course I need to walk onto doesn’t suit me, then I have to get it sorted so that I can figure it out and get comfortable.
“And rather than thinking that with PGA Tour and European Tour membership means I can probably pick-and-choose where I want to play, it’s not about that.
“It shouldn’t matter whether it’s Bay Hill, Riviera or Augusta, every golf course should suit me and that is the level I want to get to.”
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