Twelve months ago, Tommy Fleetwood was grappling with a sense of loss. Today, he’s radiating brilliance at the FedEx St. Jude Championship.


A sense of warmth washed over Tommy Fleetwood as the recollections of his mother’s daily messages of encouragement flickered through his mind.

Just over a year has passed since the passing of Fleetwood’s mother, Sue, in July, when she was 60 years old. Despite the passage of time, Fleetwood could vividly envision the message she would have sent him on that Friday, as he found himself in a tie for third place on the leaderboards after completing two rounds of the FedEx St. Jude Championship at TPC Southwind.

“In her customary way, she’d have texted, ‘Well played,'” Fleetwood reminisced.

Last year, Fleetwood didn’t partake in the FedEx Cup playoffs, resulting in his absence from the Memphis event. This interruption came after three consecutive years of him playing at TPC Southwind.

Fleetwood is heading towards achieving one of his most notable career placements at this course as the Friday progress suggests. Currently positioned at 8-under par, he trails the lead by merely two strokes, having delivered an impressive scorecard of 66 during the second round.

His previous standout performance at TPC Southwind was a shared fourth-place finish in 2019. This was succeeded by a 35th position in 2020 and a 46th in 2021.

he accumulation of these encounters could serve as valuable assets for Fleetwood as he navigates a course that may undergo significant transformations in the upcoming days. The tournament’s commencement was hindered by a three-hour delay on Thursday due to a downpour that soaked the course. The searing heat that characterized Friday is anticipated to intensify over the weekend, making Saturday and Sunday equally scorching challenges.

“I’m eager to observe how the weather unfolds over the next few days because, based on my previous experiences, the conditions tend to make the course considerably firmer,” Fleetwood commented. “As time progresses, the course gains firmness, speed increases, the rough dries up, resulting in a notably distinct playstyle compared to Thursday and Friday mornings.”

Following the passing of Fleetwood’s mother last July, his return to golf occurred in October. Since then, he has secured six top-10 finishes. Notably, two of these triumphs transpired at major tournaments – a commendable fifth-place finish at the U.S. Open and a shared 10th place at The Open, a mere fortnight ago. Although Fleetwood presently occupies the 26th position in the FedEx Cup Playoff rankings, his consistent performance indicates a potential surge up the ranks if his current form persists.

While it could be deemed a mere coincidence that Fleetwood’s prime performance aligns with the present moment, he holds in high regard the invaluable teachings in both golf and life that his mother imparted, especially as he looks back upon the past year.

“Right until the day she departed, she never missed sending me a text after every round of golf I played,” Fleetwood shared. “I believe my parents provided me with a wealth of insights into effective parenting.”


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