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Howell credits coach for upturn in form
DAVID Howell says coach Jonathan Wallet deserves credit for his recent return to form on the European Tour.
The Broome Manor pro has been in solid shape all year and finished in a tie for fifth at the recent Perth International in Australia, enabling him to move up to 64th in the Race To Dubai.
And the Swindon star was keen to praise Wallet - who he linked up with at the start of last year - for his role.
“He’s a very different type of golf coach to anyone I’ve ever worked with before,” said Howell.
“He’s not a technical coach, or certainly with me he isn’t, and we just analysed and looked at how I’m going about what I do, how I practise, what I’m trying to achieve, what I’m thinking on the course, what my strategies are and looking at every little bit of what makes up playing good golf.
“As we talked things through over a good few months we came to realise that always working on my swing, always looking at my technique, a lot of those things have not been helping me.
“Traditionally that’s what you do when you go to a new coach and you try to work on your technique and you try to control the ball better.
“We’ve almost done the opposite. We’ve just tried to work out what the difference is.
“I’ve been trying to build more of an understanding of my own game, where it is this year, and I think that’s paying dividends.
“I’ve been less confused, when I’ve hit poor shots I’ve had more of an idea of why that is, I haven’t had to react to them and that week on week, day on day has meant everything has become a little bit easier, a bit more natural and I’ve been able to focus on areas of my golf which maybe were a little neglected.
“As the year’s evolved that strategy has been helping me.”
Howell, who is not in action at the BMW Masters in Shanghai this weekend, explained that Wallet had taught him to take a calmer approach on the course.
He said: “There’s always a psychological element to golf, from every shot you hit to the way you feel about yourself in general and the way you think on the course.
“There’s no doubt I was getting very down with how I was playing, I wasn’t controlling the ball well enough for a few years and that would lead me to get frustrated or angry.
“I played a lot of angry golf and because I was always focused on trying to correct my swing I was neglecting all the other aspects - concentration, focus, commitment - all the other stuff that you do naturally well when you’re swinging well and you’re confident.
“Often when you’re playing poorly you make a bogey not because you’ve got a bad swing but because your strategy was poor, and you keep compounding matters.
“As we know in golf, the differences at my level are tiny and if you neglect certain aspects you make it hard for yourself.”
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