Luke Elvy: Being Steven Bowditch
Ask anyone who’s ever played golf or grown up with Steven Bowditch and they say the same thing, ‘he’s one of the most talented players I’ve ever seen.’
But until now, that talent has been largely untapped.
Steve Bowditch gives the thumbs up after winning his first PGA Tour title (Credit: Getty Images)
Sure, there has to be much admiration for someone who is a card member of the hardest tour in the world – the way he held on to it last year showed real spirit. However, the 30 year-old is better than that, he has the potential to be world-class.
This was Adam Scott from a Golf World interview with Jim Moriaty in 2009… “Bowdo’s just raw talent,” said Scott “One of those guys who’s gifted with really good hand-eye coordination. When you’ve got that much talent, it was always just a question of when his game would mature.”
For Bowditch’s game to mature, he needed to as well, and that’s what makes his Valero Texas Open victory more significant. He had to learn how to stop beating himself, before he could beat the field.
Yes, I’m well aware of his battle with severe depression. It has been a tumultuous tussle he’s had with the ‘black dog’ for most of his adult life. He is a spokesperson for BeyondBlue and hosts an annual golf day near his home at Perigian Beach on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland.
He’s undergone intense psychotherapy and at least once tried to commit suicide, but thankfully he’s been winning the fight of late. He hates being asked about it, but whether he likes it or not it’s part of his story.
“Basically I just learnt about myself, matured as a person and took one day at a time.” was his straightforward response when asked about those tough times this week. That simple attitude undoubtedly helped him down the stretch in Texas.
His wife Amanda, a TV producer in the United States, has been the driving force in his life, the one who has helped him find inner peace. This is a victory for love as much as it is for overcoming adversity. What do they say is behind every great man?
Now that he has broken through, the world is his oyster. Bowditch has the potential to be one of the world’s top 20 players, it just depends on how much he really wants it. But first things first pack your bags for Augusta.
For years we’ve been lamenting the lack of success for Australian golf. We were been crying out for a new hero, but now it seems our men & women are doing us proud every week.
As of this week we have the 2nd & 4th ranked men in the world, Adam Scott and Jason Day. Karrie Webb is the hottest player on the LPGA Tour. Minjee Lee and Su Hyun Oh are the no.1 & 5th ranked female amateurs while Ollie Goss (12th WAGR) is about to make his Masters debut.
It’s fascinating how it happens in cycles. Norman lifted the likes of Grady, Baker-Finch & Elkington to major success in the 90s. In the early to mid 2000s our boys were known as the “Awesome Aussies” as the likes of Allenby, Appleby, Baddeley, Lonard, Ogilvy, Pampling, Parry and Scott combined to win 5-6 PGA Tour events a season.
Now almost 12 months since Scott ended our Masters hoodoo we Day, Senden & Bowditch celebrating recent wins while Webb at 39, is proving there’s plenty left in her Hall of Fame career. May it long continue.