Off the Ball: Lowry poised for his usual summer of brilliance
We had Shane Lowry on the show last night and, on reflection, I'm suddenly expecting him to put in a serious summer's work.
Long gone is the rookie making his way on the European Tour and then adjusting to life on the PGA Tour. In particular over the past two years, it has been brilliant to watch him grow into the role of WGC winner and a world top 30 player; all the while remaining mercifully unaffected by ego. The chance to go and spend some time chatting to him is one I always volunteer for.
Honestly, that is not the case with a fair portion of sports people. Lowry is everything you suspect or hope you know about him from a distance. Down to earth, very friendly and no bullshit.
He often tends to play his best golf around this part of the year too. Two years ago at Wentworth he sparked a big return to form after an indifferent start to the season. Last June at the US Open, he finished ninth. A WGC win followed in August to cement his standing in the upper echelons of the game.
So far this season it's been steady to good. Day one at the Masters was pretty special, 'as well as I've played all year', he said. Throw in some post-wedding bliss and hopefully the next few months deliver on their potential.