Clarke struggles to find motivation

Darren Clarke is having trouble motivating himself now that he’s claimed the one prize he’s always coveted.

Open champion Darren Clarke is having trouble motivating himself now that he’s won the one tournament he’s always wanted to.

Clarke triumphed in spectacular fashion at Royal St George’s back in July, fulfilling a lifelong ambition to win golf’s oldest major.

“It’s been a dream since I’ve been a kid to win the Open, like any kid’s dream is,” Clarke said at the time. “And I’m able to do it, which just feels incredible – incredible – right now.”

But now that the job’s been done, Clarke is finding it hard to scale new heights.

“I’ve done what I’ve always wanted to do – got to the top of the mountain,” Clarke said on Wednesday on the eve of the Dunhill Links Championship. “So what else can compare to it?

“If you ask anybody if they’ve achieved their lifetime goal, they’ll probably tell you ‘how do you keep, going and going?’

“What else is there to do? I’ve achieved my lifetime goal. I’ve managed to win the tournament I’ve wanted to win from when I first started playing golf, the biggest and best tournament in the world.

“I’ve no idea how people like (Olympic five-times gold medallist) Steve Redgrave do it, keep going for more.”

At least he will keep trying to win more majors.

“I’m in every major for the next five years, so I’m going to have more chances,” he added.

The Northern Irishman would also love to get another crack at the Ryder Cup trophy. A lot of Ryder Cup points are on offer at the Alfred Dunhill, and Clarke knows he can well and truly launch his campaing with a solid showing at St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns this week.

“We’re playing for an awful lot of prize money this week, Ryder Cup points and world ranking points,” he said. “I would dearly love to make the (Ryder Cup) team next year and I want to give myself every chance I can to do that.”