Rickie Fowler and Brian Harman both failed to win their first major titles at the US Open this weekend after being well placed going into Sunday – and the two are viewing their flops through very different lenses.
Fowler began Sunday’s US Open final round at 10-under-par, two shots out of the lead.
He was hitting the ball as well as he has ever done and seemed primed to break his major duck.
However, he never mounted a charge as he shot even-par-72 and ended up six shots behind winner Brooks Koepka.
The likeable American, who is now 0-31 in majors, refused to be downcast afterwards though.
“It was a tough day out there,’’ he said. “I feel like golf-wise I’m playing at the highest level.
“If you look at the negatives too much, you’re going to be stuck doing that the whole time.
“You have to measure success in different ways — not just by winning, because that doesn’t happen a whole lot.
“I think Tiger [Woods] had the best winning percentage of all time at 30 per cent, and you’re lucky to even sniff close to 10 [per cent].’’
Harman, who has also never won a major, began Sunday with the 54-hole lead, but could manage no better than the same score as Fowler.
Speaking afterwards, the 30-year-old explained that he understood his failure to convert very differently to Fowler.
“It bites a little bit right now,’’ Harman said. “I don’t believe in moral victories. I had an opportunity and I didn’t get it done. But at the same time, I don’t feel as though I lost a golf tournament.
“I think Brooks went out and won the tournament. I’m just going to keep trying to do what I’m good at and keep doing what I know how to do and we’ll see where that takes me.’’
In winning on Sunday, Koepka became the seventh consecutive first-time major champion, following in the footsteps of Sergio Garcia, Jimmy Walker, Henrik Stenson, Dustin Johnson, Danny Willett and Jason Day.
A bogey-free 67 handed Finland’s Mikko Korhonen a one-shot lead heading into the weekend at the Shot Clock Masters in Austria.
The R&A has supported the branching out of a new competition for golfers that answer many of the problems the sport faces.