Nerves still hit golfer Cameron Smith
A 30-shot back nine to clinch the 150th Open Championship would seem to indicate Cameron Smith handles the big occasion quite well.
But the Brisbane native insists there will still be butterflies on the first tee for Sunday’s final round after earning a three-shot Australian PGA Championship lead.
“I still get nervous,” Smith, who has won four times already this year, said after carding a two-under 69 at Royal Queensland on Saturday.
“I’ve become better at probably handling the nerves and playing under the nerves a little bit.
“But yeah, I’ll be out there tomorrow still s****ing myself.”
Smith stormed to a maiden major title at St Andrews this year, the Claret Jug sandwiched between two PGA Tour wins and another on the LIV Tour after his controversial defection.
With glory at Royal Queensland beckoning, he is on the cusp of another 2022 milestone after claiming his second Greg Norman Medal and also earning the keys to Brisbane in what has been a hectic homecoming.
Smith has openly coveted a first Australian Open title – to be contested in Victoria from Thursday – but has lapped up his hero’s welcome in Brisbane.
“The crowds have been awesome all week to me,” he said.
“I’ve really ridden it all week, to be honest. It seems like at every tee there’s a, ‘C’mon Smithy’ or a pat on the bum or something like that.
“I’ve had a few kind of awkward ones this week … it’s been awesome. The reception’s been incredible.”