Shane Lowry victory speech after €1,000,000 victory shows where his head's at
Once as high as 17th in the world, the Offaly native was down in 74th coming into the Abu Dhabi Championship.
Shane Lowry is back in the winners' enclosure, but this one was as hard-fought as they come.
The 31-year-old blew a three-stroke lead to trail by four shots with seven to go, only to rally over the closing stretch and beat Richard Sterne on the 18th.
A pearler of a three-wood approach from 281 yards back, on the 18th fairway, teed him up for an eagle putt. Sensibly, he lagged that putt and sank the birdie to pip Sterne to the post and claim €1,024,195 in the process.
— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) January 19, 2019
The win will shoot Lowry back into the world's top 50 and make qualifying for this year's Majors a sight easier. It will also see him invited to a lot of the more lucrative tournaments, but Lowry is focused on his main priority over the next 20 months.
Back in November, he told 'Inside the Ropes' podcast how much it pained him to miss out on the 2018 Ryder Cup in France. He commented
"When you are a player and you feel like you are good enough to be there, you are watching it and there’s something deep down, a bit of jealousy in there.
"I am not old, but I am getting on. I am 33 for the next Ryder Cup and I need to start making a move and making one soon.
"That's a big goal of mine in my head and I think Padraig Harrington is going to be captain as well. So I will hopefully make that team. It would be great to play Ryder Cup and play under him as well."
Harrington was indeed selected as Ryder Cup captain, earlier this month, and the Dubliner must be delighted to see Lowry starting 2019 so well.
In his post-round interview, Lowry gave Harrington even greater reason to be cheerful when he once again declared that securing an automatic spot on the 2020 Ryder Cup team was his biggest goal in the coming months.
Great comeback and beautiful win for Shane Lowry. After WGC win in 2015 and contending in ‘16 US Open I didn’t expect it would take this long. With Harrington as Ryder Cup captain and The Open in Ireland, this is a perfect start of his year. Well done.#ADGolfChamp
— JJ's Slice (@JJ_Slice) January 19, 2019
In his winning interview Shane Lowry made it very clear that his main aim is to make the 2020 Ryder Cup team, not majors or anything else. And that is why Europe are continuously successful
— Darragh Culhane (@DarraghCulhane) January 19, 2019
That's great for Shane Lowry - like most of us, he has such a man crush on Padraig Harrington, and would want to be an automatic on that Ryder Cup team. He should be competing for majors and hopefully this is the start of a sustained run #AbuDhabiHSBCChampionship
— Daragh Ó Conchúir (@RebelDevil71) January 19, 2019
Shane Lowry on Harrington’s Ryder cup team next year would be class 🇮🇪🇮🇪🇮🇪
— wayne walsh (@WayneW120) January 19, 2019
We are just over 18 months away from Harrington announcing his European team to defend their title against the USA, but Lowry has gotten his quest off to a perfect start.
Majors may not be his number one priority but when Lowry is playing his natural game, and is comfortable in his own game, he'll always be in with a shout.