Lowry focused on winning not rankings
Shane Lowry is looking for his third European Tour win in Dubai this week. Picture Fran Caffrey  www.golffile.ie

Shane Lowry is looking for his third European Tour win in Dubai this week. Picture Fran Caffrey www.golffile.ie

Shane Lowry insists he’s sick of talking about his bid to make the world’s Top 50 and fully focussed on crowing his best season as professional by clinching his third European Tour win in the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai.

The Offaly ace suffered a final round implosion in last week’s Turkish Airlines Open when he dropped five shots in two holes immediately after grabbing a share of the lead.

Ignoring the elephant in the room has become impossible for the 27-year old world No 52, who limped home tied for 25th in Antalya.

He needs a Top-13 finish on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates to make the world rankings move that would guarantee him a Masters debut next April.

And he can think of no better way of doing it than notching up the European Tour win his 2014 richly deserves.

With world No 1 Rory McIlroy determined to walk away with both the Harry Vardon and the DP World Tour Championship trophies on Sunday, it’s  big ask for Lowry.

But he believes the simply focussing on playing good golf will help him get over the mental barrier of the top-50 and head to Sun City for the Nedbank Golf Challenge next week with a spring in his step.

“I am kind of sick talking about it to be honest,” Lowry said of his world rankings quest.  “I am sick thinking about it. It is something that is there now and I am just going to have to deal with it. I am just going to have to go and play well. 

“I just have to go and play golf. Simple as that. It is like every week. I want to go and play well every week I play. Even today, I am probably going to play GMac for a few quid and I am going to want to play well today. That is just the way it is.

“I’ve just got to try and play well. Try and  win. To be honest, I want to win. I spoke to [my coach] Neil [Manchip] about it and I think it is the only thing that this year is missing. This would be a great week to do it.”  

Lowry took Tuesday off to see his parents after a long stretch on the road and feels recharged and ready to go.

Drawn with stablemate Ross Fisher, he said: “I think I will be alright this week.”

Having played his first four holes of the final round in four under last week, hitting a five iron to two feet at the fourth to set up an eagle three and snatch a share of the lead, he found what happened next hard to take.

Having jokingly mimed throwing his club in the lake after his wondershot, recalling how he’d threatened to dump the club after a poor shot in China the previous week, he promptly used the same club at the par-three fifth and found the lake, running up a triple bogey six there before carding a double bogey six at the sixth to kiss the title goodbye.

The five iron nearly went missing in China,” he said of his mock gesture on the fourth. “It was the first time I’d hit it since.”

Recalling how he felt about his rollercoaster, he said: “You go from one of the biggest highs to one of the biggest lows ever. It was tough to deal with. I had been playing lovely all week, I had been seeing shots and putting quite nicely. Then all of a sudden that happens and I couldn’t see a shot or see a putt going in. 

“I felt like I played okay after that but for those two holes. But listen, it happened and I can’t do anything about it now. Unfortunately, it is not the last time it is going to happen in my career. It is (getting use to it). It is (a nice problem to have). It happened. I am over it now. It’s something I’m not going to dwell on and I will just try to look forward to it tomorrow.”

Reminded it is never the club that’s to blame, he smiled and said: “No. It’s always the indian, never the arrow.”

Getting things right mentally is Lowry’s big goal this week but with coach Neil Manchip by his side, he’s thinking clearly again and ready to hit the bullseye.