You really will have to dig deep into the annals if you are to find a more frustrating day for Jon Rahm on the greens. The Barrika native was pulling his hair out, but nobody can say he did not keep trying until the end.
“It’s not easy to hit the fairway on this course today, so it would have been nice to hole a few. Few times in my career have I hit so many good putts without any dropping. But this is golf. Let’s see if it balances out on the weekend and I hole some more”.
Clearly, Rahm’s putter was not behaving today. Among the players in the event with 31.5 putts per round, he is in the top 10. He has not given up because he knows they will start to drop eventually: “a lot of those hurt, particularly on the front 9, because they were going in the middle and then they turned the opposite way to Yannick and Rafa’s putts. That’s been the story of the last two days, but I mustn’t try and do more than I can control, and that’s what I’ll do tomorrow”.
Today, Jon equalled his worst round at Club de Campo Villa de Madrid, 72 shots. And although things did not go his way on Friday, the world number 3 knows that it is a long road and anything can happen: “on balance, it was a bad day, in terms of tomorrow that will change everything, but the idea for what’s left is to win. I’m eight shots back and playing badly, I can eat into that easily, especially if the weather gets a little worse and the course gets very hard. What happened to me today can happen to anyone, so if I can get close to -10 on Saturday, I’ll have a chance of winning on Sunday”.
There was a lot of talk of the weather today at the ACCIONA Open de España presented by Madrid, as it seems as though it may take a turn for the worse, particularly on Sunday. It would certainly please the Basque player, but he has a more specific scenario in mind: “I don’t want it to rain, but I want the course to get firm. The firmer and more difficult it is, the better for me, so let’s hope it doesn’t rain and that the wind blows so it keeps drying out”.
Despite the result, the fans were behind Rahm all the way, supporting and applauding every shot he hit. They will surely play a vital role if he is to make a comeback: “the Spanish fans are incredible, and although it’s not exactly like the Ryder Cup because they are different formats and tournaments, it could be a similar atmosphere because everyone is behind me”.
It would not be Jon Rahm’s first comeback of the year, and if one thing is clear, it’s that an angry Rahm is even more dangerous to his rivals.