Dustin Johnson is quietly confident he can make amends for letting the US Open slip from his grasp when it returns to Pebble Beach in June.
Johnson led by three shots heading into final round of the major in 2010 before closing with an error-strewn 82 to end up joint eighth, five shots behind the winner, Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell.
The American then landed the prize six years later at Oakmont, but, speaking after his weekend win in the Saudi International, he said he is relishing the opportunity to repeat the feat at Pebble Beach.
“I really like the golf course,” said Johnson, who is also playing there this week in the PGA Tour’s AT&T Pro-Am. “I think I play it very well. I know it very well. I would definitely like to give it (winning the US Open) another go this year and hopefully if I’m in that situation again, I can perform a little better.”
The 34-year-old’s win on the Rea Sea coast came a week after compatriot Bryson DeChambeau tasted victory in Dubai. In fact, half of the European Tour’s 2019 schedule events have fallen to Americans as Kurt Kitayama and David Lipsky also won the Mauritius Open and Alfred Dunhill Championship respectively.
“I think you are starting to see a lot more Americans playing over on the European Tour, especially early in the year and late in the year,” said Johnson, whose only other planned appearance on the circuit is the Open Championship at Royal Portrush in July.
Rickie Fowler has also tasted an early-season success, the 2015 Scottish Open champion having recovered from dropping four shots in two holes on the back nine to win the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Russell Knox finished in the top ten, jumping ahead of compatriot Martin Laird in the final round.