Firstly Denzel thanks so much for taking the time to have a chat to us today mate much appreciated by all our FOPGA Newsletter readers I am sure
You had a wonderful time of things at the end of 2019 including shooting a remarkable 29 under at the Mount in the Charles Tour event there to win by 7 shots, 6th = @ The NSW Open, 5th = at the Australian Open and 10th = @ Australian PGA. That is a very impressive run, with some decent checks to boot, what do you think has been the most important factors in you transitioning into the professional game so quickly and with great success?
“I think going through that stretch in November was really important for me to learn how my game and my body held up over 5 weeks. The week before the NSW Open I played 3rd stage Japan Tour Q school and I played terribly and missed the cut. I looked at it in a positive way and said to myself because I missed Japan Tour it gave me the chance to play the Aus Open which was on at the same time as Japan Tour final stage Q school.”
“I think through 27 holes at the NSW Open I was 3-4 shots outside the cut line and managed to find a feel on the back 9 to come home in 6 under I think. From there, it was all go. I wanted to leave the course straight after that because I felt mentally drained, my good mate Nick Voke told me to stay for 30 mins and work that feeling that I found on the back 9 in on the range. Thank god for him.”
“The coolest thing about that stretch was that I didn’t put my best foot forward for all 4 days in any of those weeks and managed some good results. That gives me all the confidence I need to know that I can win.”
“My best round out of that stretch was the second round at the Aus PGA, easily. Spent an hour on the range the previous night with my caddie and we had no idea where the ball was going, couldn’t find a feel and we just decided we were going to have a good dinner and then give it everything in round 2. Full grind all day to shoot that score and make the cut and carried that play onto the weekend.”
“I think the key in transitioning from amateur golf to professional golf for me was my tournament experience in college and playing the summer events in the states. When you’re in college you have limited time to practice, you have a bunch of school work and have to learn to manage your time and practice sessions efficiently. Once graduated I had the whole day to focus on golf but still maintained that efficient mindset. I learned how to practice for performance.”
“I also had a really good team around me when I turned. I had my mum and dad, my coach Reon Sayer, and my whole team and coaching staff at Iowa State. A great support system around me where everyone was holding me accountable.”
How has 2020 been going so far?
“2020 has been solid, no great performances just yet. But huge improvements in my body which has me excited for the rest of the season.”
The lockdown will end up being 5 weeks how are you keeping yourself occupied?
“Lockdown has been interesting for sure. I have been very lucky to be home with family and that we are all safe and healthy. We have a great home gym set up here so I’ve been working out. Have set up a net to hit into a bedsheet hanging over the trampoline. Apart from that, I’ve been playing plenty of Call of Duty with the guys and just hanging out with my family.”
Are you working on much golf-related or taking a break?
“Been pretty light work on my golf game. More so on my body, getting back into golf more consistently this week.”
What are the plans for the remainder of 2020 Denzel? -With an understanding, much is still to be formalized in all countries but best case.
Best case scenario I will be back in the States asap. My goal is to play on the PGA Tour. We had planned to play PGA Tour Canada this summer and hopefully progress to the Koran Ferry Tour. Obviously plans are a little different now, but I will look to do the same thing once we can travel. Looking like early June is the PGA Tour’s predicted start time so I would love to be there for that.
Be wonderful if you get some status in Canada it’s a realistic pathway for you to get on to the all-important Korn Ferry Tour, is playing in America the primary goal?
Playing on the PGA Tour is my goal. My game is suited for the type of play over there and I am confident I can compete over there. I Monday Q’d into a Korn Ferry Event (KFT) and got a taste for it last season with back to back top 25 finishes. The sooner I can get on the KFT the better!
Cheers mate and all the best for the remainder of 2020 fingers crossed you can get back to North America and competing.
You can keep track of Denzel’s play on his Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/denzelieremiagolf/
Article courtesy of the NZ PGA: https://www.pga.org.nz/