By Brian Keogh
History says that Padraig Harrington could win at least six major titles and join Nick Faldo as the greatest European golfer of all time.
But Harrington while still doesn't believe he is in the same class as idols like Faldo, Ben Hogan or five-time champion Seve Ballesteros, he knows he has the mental resolve to get close.
As he prepared to chase a $10 million bonus in the FedEx Cup over the next three weeks, Harrington said: "It's difficult to even to think that I could be compared with those great names like Seve Ballesteros, he was an idol of mine. To try and compare myself to him, I don’t think I can put myself out there."
Harrington is one of just 11 players to win three majors in the space of two seasons - the others are Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Walter Hagen, Ben Hogan, Tom Watson, Bobby Jones, Gene Sarazen, Arnold Palmer, Faldo and Lee Trevino.
All 10 have all won six majors or more and Harrington knows that he has the mental resolve to go out and win more big ones.
Completing the "Paddy Slam" by adding next year"s Masters and US Open titles to his resumé is something he is convinced he can achieve.
Speaking after his win, he said: "Let’s be brutally honest. I do feel I can do it. I want to go on and win major championships.
"I won’t be thinking of which ones they are. If I can go out and manage my game, I am sure I will go on to win more Majors."
Harrington won the US PGA title with a performance that reminded many of Nicklaus in his hey-day.
He hung around the lead for most of the day and when others faltered, he finished them of with the putter.
Like Woods, he showed no mercy and if he can put himself in position in future majors, there is no reason to believe he can’t win another handful.
Reflecting on those killer blows on the greens, he said: "The more my back is to the wall the better I get. I have always been good in those situations. You just have to be.
"On 16, 17 and 18 I had to make those putts. On 18 I said, if I hole this putt I will win the PGA Championship. If I lag it down there I could go into a play off and I would have less control over things.
"The worst things you can do in a Major championship is let anyone else have chance. You don’t want to give someone a chance. You want to take it on and put your neck on the line.
"I can hit all the shots and have all the belief but you"d be surprised how I can make it such hard work for myself.
"You ask anybody I played as an amateur. I did ridiculous things when I had to. When I was two down with nine to play I holed putts all the way home. In periods of transition that wasn’t happening but when things have to be done, I do them."
Harrington showed glimpses of Seve and Woods on Sunday night, but his biggest idol is Ben Hogan, the player that won the Open, the US Open and the Masters in 1953.
He said: "My idols have not necessarily been the unbelievably talented ones but the guys who have worked hard at their game and got the most out of their talent.
"Ben Hogan went from being a struggling professional to being probably the best ball striker of all time and definitely one of the best players of all time.
"That's someone I would consider a role model. The more I hear about him the more I appreciate him. There was a lot more than just his ability to swing a golf club - his mental skills were also strong."
Providing he avoids injury, Harrington can look forward to the future with optimism. But is the best yet to come.
Beaming from ear to ear, he said: "Hopefully. But what has happened so far is pretty special."