Cam Davis.
Cam Davis has scored a one-shot win at the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit. Image by AP PHOTO
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Aussie rides emotional roller-coaster to PGA Tour win

Darren Walton July 1, 2024

Cam Davis is crediting hypnotherapy sessions for dragging him out of the golfing doldrums and back into the PGA Tour’s winner’s circle.

Davis held his nerve after enduring a series of bad breaks down the stretch to win the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit for the second time in three years, with fellow Australian Min Woo Lee finishing in a four-way tie for second.

An emotional Davis was reduced to tears after closing with a final-round two-under-par 70 and then watching American prodigy Akshay Bhatia (72) three-putt the last hole while trying to force a play-off.  

The 29-year-old Davis prevailed with the same 18-under-par total he won with in a three-man play-off in 2021.

The victory continues a roller-coaster season for the Sydneysider, who missed the US Open cut two weeks ago and hasn’t finished higher than tied for 38th in seven events since sharing 12th at the Masters in April.

Cam Davis.
 Cam Davis has had a roller-coaster season, capped off with a victory in Detroit. Image by AP PHOTO 

“I don’t know what to say. Yeah, from where I was a couple of weeks ago to today, it’s just a completely different person. I’m a little bit emotional actually,” said the former Australian Open champion.

“I wouldn’t wish what happened to Akshay on anyone, but I’ve done a lot of grinding to kind of get myself out of a hole, and to just all of a sudden do that, that’s pretty good.

“I started working with a hypnotherapist a few weeks ago, just to take another angle into trying to get myself sorted out, and (she) has done an awesome job.

“I’ve got so many people behind me that have helped me along the way … a lot of support to get me out of the doldrums there, and I saw a little bit of a spark last week, but nothing to show this coming.

“So this is crazy.”   

Chasing a maiden PGA Tour win of his own, Lee seized a share of the lead late with two electrifying chip-in birdies, only to  bogey the last hole and miss a play-off by one shot.

Min Woo Lee.
 Min Woo Lee held a share of the lead in Detroit but finished tied for second. Image by AP PHOTO 

Lee had to settle for a share of the runner-up spoils with Bhatia, fellow American Davis Thompson (68) and England’s Aaron Rai (72) after closing with a 69.

Lee lamented three-putting from inside 10 feet en route to a double-bogey seven on the par-5 seventh hole, then over-clubbing his approach at the 18th while pressing hard for a seventh birdie of the day.

“I had a really good chance there, again. I needed to play aggressive,” he said.

“Unlucky with the bogey on the last, but I played really good, but there’s a lot of things that I need to work on to get it to the next level.

“But I’m very happy with the week.”

Lee’s equal-best PGA Tour result comes four days after his Paris Olympics teammate Jason Day hailed the 25-year-old a future world No.1.

“I love his game. I love him as a person. He’s a good young kid and he’s got a lot of talent,” Day said.

“He’s going to be in the game for a long time. It’s just a matter of how much he wants it because he’s got all the tools to be able to be great at this game.”

Bhatia had been bidding to join Tiger Woods, Sergio Garcia, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Tom Kim as only the sixth player in 40 years to win three times on tour before the age of 23.

Alas, his 72nd-hole slip-up was only his second bogey of the week.