Wednesday, May 18

Hovland takes self-criticism: – Made many bad decisions

Viktor Hovland (24) can open the victory account in 2022 in Dubai this week. Norway’s third best golfer, Kristian Krogh Johannessen (26), thinks it should come last week.

STAND OUT: A bunch of mistakes made the victory fall out of reach for Viktor Hovland in Abu Dhabi last week.

Aftenposten collaborates with VG-sporten. Therefore, as an Aftenposten reader, you also get articles and services created by VG.

Even with agent Sam MacNaughton as caddy in last week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, Viktor Hovland finished in a split fourth place, just two strokes behind the victory.

Shay Knight, the Norwegian’s regular caddy, is at home in the USA – first due to corona infection in the family and later because he himself became infected.

This week, Hovland was originally to have his friend Kristian Krogh Johannessen, who played with Hovland in the Olympics this summer, as a caddy.

But on Tuesday came the news that Krogh Johannessen – who is number 335 in the world and plays on the Challenge Tour (the level during the DP World Tour) on a daily basis – could not help Hovland because he himself has a small playing category on the DP World Tour. Hovland risked being disqualified if he had used his friend as a caddy.

– The rules are as they are. It is useless to think whether they are stupid or not. It was good that we discovered it at least, so we found a decent solution, says Hovland to VG at a press conference on Wednesday.

The solution will be that Peter Kaensche, who was Krogh Johannessen’s caddy during the Olympics last year, will help Hovland this week.

COMING IN: Peter Kaensche (back) was caddy for Kristian Krogh Johannessen in the Olympics last summer.

Hovland calls last week’s tournament “slightly frustrating”, and is aware that things could have looked different if it had not been for the agent who had been the caddy.

– There is no doubt about that. You saw hole 15. That’s the clearest thing. I hit a good second shot. I was one stroke behind when I played that hole, and I did not want to gamble everything on going straight on the stick there. I aim out on the left side and strike a good blow, but when I got up there, I had no blow at all.

Hovland was inside the green on the mentioned hole, but was difficult and chose to chip the ball. He ended up chipping the ball off the green and eventually ended up with a double bogey. The difference up to tournament winner Thomas Pieters was eventually two strokes.

– If Shay had been there, he would have known that you can not miss far left there. I felt like I made a lot of bad decisions during the rest of the week. I put the pins in the book the day before, and I really had no idea where to miss on a couple of the pins.

– Shay had helped me a lot there, unfortunately. You learn from it, and I could just as easily have had a chance. But that’s the way it is, new week, says Hovland.

Hovland and Krogh Johannessen have been friends for a long time, but the friendship did not start so well:

Krogh Johannessen thinks the result last week would have looked different if Hovland had brought Shay Knight with him.

– I think he had easily won last week with proper caddy help. It’s hard for him to know that of course, but hopefully it will be different this week, he told VG on Monday, when it looked like the 26-year-old would assist Hovland in Dubai this week.

PS! Hovland moved up to fifth place in the world rankings this week.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.