Poulter proves to be the host with the most...nerves

Thu Oct 8, 2015 1:08pm EDT
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By Tony Jimenez

WOBURN, England (Reuters) - Tournament host Ian Poulter had to overcome a rare attack of the jitters before getting his campaign underway at the $4.55 million British Masters on Thursday.

The golfer known as the 'Postman' for his ability to deliver spectacular performances in the Ryder Cup was as nervous as a kitten over his opening tee shot at Woburn, his home course.

Asked to remember the last occasion he had felt that way on the first tee at a regular tour event, Poulter replied: "It's been a long, long time.

"I always said I struggle with getting up for rounds of golf, it's not that they don't mean anything, but it's a Thursday," he added after registering a three-under-par 68.

"It was good to see lots of faces out there, great crowds, the weather is good, and to get that tingle, the buzz that you really want to get going," said the Englishman.

"Two minutes before teeing off it was like 'right, okay, just an easy three-wood up the middle'. The fairway shrinks a lot and that's good, it makes you focus, it's nice to get that feeling especially on a Thursday."

The British Masters is back on the European Tour schedule for the first time in seven years and Poulter is delighted.

"I'm very proud," he said. "There's a lot of work gone on behind the scenes.   Continued...

Golf - The British Masters - Woburn Golf Club - 8/10/15
England's Ian Poulter in action during the first round
Mandatory Credit: Action Images / Alex Morton