Kenny Perry doesn’t have a bad life at all. Dude’s got a great looking wife, he plays professional golf for a living and, well, actually that’s probably enough. Oh yeah. He’s rich. But that’s because he plays golf for a living. In other words, it’s tough to feel that bad for the guy, even if he did just choke away a Masters title recently.
But the downside of being a professional golfer — money, women, fame aside — includes having to speak about your failures. And Perry did just that recently, talking about how he’s been handling his life since Augusta ended, whether he thought about winning while he was playing and what the Masters means compared to the Ryder Cup.
On the last two weeks since the Masters:
“This week’s been kind of a rough week. After experiencing the highs and lows of the tournament, to feel like you had something and then to let it get away. That week was magical, I went in early at Augusta, prepared, spent a lot of time the week before doing all the green complexes and everything, spent over 20 hours on the greens. You know, I had a plan last year to make the Ryder Cup team and it came through so I kinda set a plan to figure out how I could get through Augusta to be competitive, and it almost panned out. I played beautifully last week and I’m proud of how I hung in there and handled it, and I’d just like to have one little chip over again if I could have it.”
Did thoughts of winning creep into his head as he was winning the Masters with two holes to play:
“Not really. I knew 17 and 18 were tough holes. 17, they’ve added all the trees up the right and left side, it’s a very tight and very demanding driving hole now. I knew I needed to get that ball in the fairway, and I kinda got a bad break I think. I hit a drive up the right side and actually it hit an overhanging tree limb and shot it backwards to give me a 180 yard shot into the green where normally I’d have a 140-150 where that green is very firm and it kind of rolls away from you and I knew that 6 iron was gonna have a tough time stopping on the green. I would’ve loved to have an 8 iron or 9 iron into that green. But I hit a nice 6 iron, high and soft and it just didn’t hold, went a little long and then I hit the chip that everybody as an amateur or a pro that we don’t even want to think about.”
On playing in the Masters vs. the Ryder Cup:
“Well, for me personally nothing will ever top the Ryder Cup because I had my family there, it was in the state of Kentucky, it was at Valhalla where I lost the PGA Championship, it was a chance for me to redeem myself in front of my home folks. And to play as great as I did there, the electricity in the air was incredible. The Ryder Cup felt like the 18th hole at Augusta for every hole, from the 1st hole through 18. That’s how pressured I felt, and how everyone was hollering and rooting and going on. I felt really nervous at Augusta coming down the stretch, last couple of holes. It was different in that aspect, but both were very rewarding, very gratifying to me, and I had a blast at both of them and it’s just neat to get in those situations.”