Wolff speaks of psychological issues when getting back from the break

06/17/2021; San Diego, California, USA; Matthew Wolff plays his swing from the 12th tee during the first round of the US Open golf tournament at Torrey Pines Golf Course. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

SAN DIEGO, Calif., June 17 (Reuters) – Nine months after finishing second at the US Open, Matthew Wolff returned in style from a mental hiatus, shooting one under par 70 in the opening round of the national championship at Torrey Pines on Thursday.

Wolff has already made more than $ 5 million in two years as a pro, but the money was no consolation as he was in a poor position when he made his trade on the PGA Tour earlier this year.

Suddenly deprived of form and confidence, he bottomed out at the Masters in April, and two weeks later, after missing the cut in New Orleans, he decided to shut down the tools until he felt better.

“I think that was pretty much the turning point at the Masters,” said the 22-year-old Californian.

“The whole time my head was bowed and I hated it. I mean, I want to try to be strong for all the fans, but I think I’m not that strong yet, but I’m trying my best and I’m getting there. “

Wolff acknowledged that fans might find it difficult to understand the psychological struggles professional athletes often face, given the glamorous lives they seem to be leading.

“Any professional athlete has to deal with a lot more stress and pressure than most people realize and that kind of overwhelmed me,” he said.

“So many millions and millions and millions of people would exchange me in no time … unless you are actually a professional athlete or do a sport, you just don’t know what emotions go with it and how much you want to please and for everyone.” playing your fans and making money on top of that. “

Wolff decided to return to competition this week believing the break helped and that his long hitting play and ability to hit the ball out of long rough are suitable for a US Open.

He was happy with his score, but even more excited about enjoying his day at the office.

“I’m really just trying to learn and build and really mature,” he said.

“I mean, I’m only 22. Don’t you say the brain develops at 25 or something?”

Reporting by Andrew Both; Arrangement by Richard Pullin

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