Kevin Kisner explained a more “casual” approach helped him win the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play final over Matt Kuchar.
Thrashed 7 and 6 by Bubba Watson in last year’s final, Kisner claimed a 3 and 2 win over Kuchar in Sunday’s decider in Austin.
The American said he took lessons from his 2018 defeat, opting for a different approach after his semi-final victory against Francesco Molinari.
“Last year I felt like I rushed around to get ready to play in the second match. I ran around and ate really fast, ran back out,” Kisner told a news conference.
“I tried to go through my whole normal routine in an hour to get ready, and that’s just not feasible and how much golf you play.
“I hung out, took a shower, chilled out, got some treatment on my body and really went to the range at 2:05, and teed off at 2:25. I just went and hit 20 balls and went to the tee.
“I think that greatly helped my mental side of the game as much as anything. I wasn’t overhyped for it and just tried to go play a casual round of golf.”
Kisner lost his opening match of the tournament to Ian Poulter, and then beat the Englishman in a play-off just to get out of the group.
The Lone Star in Austin, Texas. @K_Kisner stands alone at @DellMatchPlay!#LiveUnderPar pic.twitter.com/4PMYCI6nnv
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) April 1, 2019
After his first World Golf Championships triumph, Kisner felt below his best throughout the event.
“I don’t think I played my best all week, really. It’s so hard to tell because you’re not really playing for a score, you’re playing more to situational golf in match play than you are trying to go shoot 68 or nine or seven or whatever,” he said.
“I feel like I just did what I needed to do. I know Matt didn’t play well. Him making only two birdies the entire day is unlike him, and he gave more bogeys than I’ve ever seen. I thought it would be a big par- and birdie-fest out there.
“But the golf course is hard and it’s a long week. A couple of bounces in the wrong section of the greens, and it’s a difficult two-putt for par.”