Steven Fox, 22, of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, won the 2012 U.S. Amateur Championship after surviving a 17-player playoff to reach match play and then coming from two holes down with two to play in a 37-hole final. He is sharing his thoughts on his first Masters Tournament with Thomas Bonk of Masters.com in this exclusive personal diary.
The Par 3 Contest Wednesday with Luke Donald and Brandt Snedeker was a lot of fun. I almost made a hole-in-one on No. 7 and No. 9, so it wasn’t too bad. Got the crowd going a little bit, but made a bogey when I three-putted No. 3, which was unfortunate.
It was all fun, though. I got to play with Brandt and meet his wife, Annie, and then Luke and Ellie, his 3-year-old daughter. She was a crowd pleaser. She was having so much fun. Luke carried the bag, but she was out there, which was awesome. My caddie was Jeremiah Cox, who is 14 and a family friend.
I wish I had played better, but it’s so much fun. It’s so relaxed over there. Come Thursday, it might be a little more tense, but it’s a blast.
There seemed like there were a bunch of Chattanooga fans, which was nice. I signed a bunch of autographs and stuff, met a person who said I was her favorite player – she was 5 or 6 years old – so it was awesome.
So Thursday, I’m going to stick to what I did at college. I have a 10:30 tee time, so I’ll get out here about 9 o’clock, have breakfast – probably a big breakfast because I won’t be able to eat on the course. Breakfast changes every day and it’s really good. I might go French toast tomorrow.
About 9:30, I’ll start practicing. I’ll putt for about five minutes, hit balls, come back and putt for about 15 minutes and go off.
I’m confident. Confidence is the thing you need around here. If you have confidence, you don’t have nerves, that’s how I’m going to look at it.
So I’m going to step up there and just play golf like it’s any other day. I know other guys are obviously going to be there, but I’ll try to put it behind and play golf just like I was out here last week. Fairway, middle of the green, one or two putts, go from there.
I haven’t talked to Bubba. I heard him mention me in his press conference, but I haven’t talked to him at all. He’s a little light-hearted, and so is Ian Poulter, so we’ll have fun.