Considering Tommy Fleetwood’s rise inside the top 15 on the Official World Golf Ranking over the past few years, this might surprise you: the five-under 65 he shot on Thursday at the Omega European Masters was his best opening round on the European Tour in more than four years.
Even more surprising might be that he did it with a new putter in the bag. OK, it’s actually an old putter he put back in his bag after his caddie, Ian Finnis, encouraged him to give it another shot.
Turns out the putter, an Odyssey DFX 2-Ball Blade, has an interesting origin story. It wasn’t something that Fleetwood got from an equipment trailer. Rather, Finnis purchased it off eBay for £90 in January as a birthday gift for Fleetwood, who used a similar model growing up.
“The last three or four weeks, I putted poor,” Fleetwood said, explaining the switch. “Today, it worked really well. Nothing like holing a few putts. It eases everything off when you’re going into the greens.”
Indeed, Fleetwood was feeling pretty confident with the new/old/refurbished putter in Switzerland. He needed just 21 putts during the opening round.
UPDATE, Friday Aug. 30—Fleetwood's Day 1 score wasn't a fluke at Crans-sur-Sierre Golf Club. On Friday, Fleetwood came back with a second-straight 65 to enter the weekend tied for second place with four other golfers (including Rory McIlroy). They are all one stroke back of Gavin Green.