Tommy Fleetwood Profile
|Short Name||Fairway Jesus|
|Born||Jan 19, 1991|
A star of the 2018 Ryder Cup, Tommy Fleetwood lost his way on the European Tour after an early victory but has bounced back in style to win the Race to Dubai and challenge seriously for Majors.
Having enjoyed a glittering amateur career, Tommy Fleetwood very nearly saw his professional career go up in smoke due to problems with his swing. Five years into life as a pro, Fleetwood's game was coming apart and he was at his wit's end.
Fleetwood, who won some significant amateur championships, had seemingly made a successful transition to the professional game when he recorded his first win on the Challenge Tour at just 20 years of age.
And in 2013 he won his first European Tour event and represented Great Britain and Ireland in the Seve Trophy. But by 2015, he was unsure if he had a future in the sport.
With the help of his childhood coach Alan Thompson and close friend Ian Finnis, who became his caddie, Fleetwood recovered and he's now one of Europe's leading lights.
He's yet to win a Major but has had two close brushes; he was runner-up at the US Open (2018) and again at the British Open (2019).
Fleetwood pulled out of a multi-season slump with his best-ever season in 2017, finishing as the European Tour number one after notching two wins at prestigious events - the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and the Open de France. Overall, he recorded 10 top-10 finishes to beat Justin Rose to the Race to Dubai crown.
His recovered swing is almost textbook, while his wedge game is impressive. When the putter follows suit, he's almost guaranteed to challenge.
A Southport native, Fleetwood and his father would sneak onto Royal Birkdale to play rounds on the famous British Open course.
He captained England in the 2008 Boys' Home Internationals and later that year would finish runner-up in the Amateur Championship.
In 2009, Fleetwood won the Scottish Amateur Stroke Play Championship and represented Great Britain and Ireland in the Walker Cup.
Fleetwood would top the Scratch Players World Amateur Rankings and win the English Amateur in his final stretch as an amateur.
While still an amateur Fleetwood was runner-up at the English Challenge in July of 2010.
Fleetwood turned pro shortly after his efforts at the English Challenge, making his professional debut at the Czech Open a month later.
In September, he came close to a first pro victory finishing in a tie for second at the M2M Russian Challenge Cup in Moscow, one shot behind winner Carlos Del Moral.
Just under a year after his near-miss in Russia, Fleetwood won the Kazakhstan Open, one of the biggest events on the Challenge Tour. The victory secured Fleetwood's full European Tour card for the 2012 season.
He became the youngest player to top the Challenge Tour Rankings when the 2011 campaign ended, but he couldn't carry that form onto the bigger stage.
Fleetwood's first year on the European Tour did not start well and he needed to get a result in the South African Open, his final tournament of the season, to retain his card. He managed to achieve this with a sixth-placed finish.
In his second season on the European Tour, Fleetwood secured his first victory by beating Ricardo Gonzalez and Stephen Gallacher in a playoff to claim the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles.
Win drought and swing problems
While his Tour card didn't come under threat again, Fleetwood struggled to find his best form in the following three years. He missed the cut in five of his first six Major Championship starts between 2014 and 2016, finishing T27th at the 2015 US Open.
The long wait for a win drove Fleetwood to rework his swing and employ a new caddie. He managed to work out the kinks in his game and, after missing the cut at the 2016 British Open, he recorded back-to-back top 10 finishes at the KLM Open and Italian Open in September.
He finished fourth at the British Masters, his best finish of the season, and wrapped up the campaign with another top 10 placing at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.
Race to Dubai success
Fleetwood made a flying start to the 2017 season, winning the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship to end his near four-year professional win drought.
In the summer, he recorded his first top five in a major when fourth at the US Open and two weeks later Fleetwood bagged another big win - the Rolex Series HNA Open de France.
Between his two victories, Fleetwood took second place at the 2017 WGC-Mexico Championship in March. That helped him achieve special temporary member status on the PGA Tour.
He ended 2017 ranked in the top 20 after winning the European Tour's Race to Dubai. He also won the European Tour's Seve Ballesteros award.
In 2018, Fleetwood split his time between the European Tour and the PGA Tour. Early in the season, he successfully defended his Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship to capture his fourth European Tour win.
Near misses in Majors and Ryder Cup heroics
Fleetwood has twice come close to making the big breakthrough in a Major.
He shot a stunning final-round 63 to storm into contention for the 2018 US Open at Shinnecock Hills but fell just short, missing out by one stroke to Brooks Koepka and finishing second.
Later that year he returned to the scene of his third European Tour win, Le Golf National, to make his Ryder Cup debut.
Together with Francesco Molinari, Fleetwood was one half of a golden pairing that won four matches together. The duo were later dubbed 'Moliwood'.
At the 2019 British Open, Fleetwood again went close to Major glory. He eventually finished runner-up, six shots behind the inspired Shane Lowry at Royal Portrush Golf Club in Northern Ireland.
Fleetwood is still waiting for his first PGA Tour win but notched his fifth triumph on the European Tour when he won the Nedbank Challenge, sometimes referred to as 'Africa's Major', in November 2019.
Tommy Fleetwood's personal life
Fleetwood was born and raised in Southport, Lancashire, taking up golf at a young age but enjoying other sports as well.
He supports Everton FC and also enjoys watching rugby and darts.
His wife Clare is also his manager while his caddie Ian Finnis was best man at their wedding. Fleetwood has a son called Franklin, who was born in October 2017.
Fleetwood enjoys practicing yoga and meditation regularly, making use of the Headspace app. He is also an avid reader who enjoys biographies, detective stories and historical books.
A keen actor in his youth, his skills in that department have also been used by the European Tour's social media team, Fleetwood starring in several hugely-popular viral videos.
His signature flowing locks and beard have earned him the nickname Fairway Jesus.
Tommy Fleetwood's net worth
By November 2020, Fleetwood had earned more than $9million in prize money and the latest estimates place his net worth at roughly $5million.
A Nike endorsed athlete, Fleetwood was slow to move the company's discontinued clubs out of his bag. He now uses a range of clubs from a variety of manufacturers.
Fleetwood has marketing relationships with luxury watchmaker Omega and BMW.
Despite spending more and more time in the United States, Fleetwood still lives in the United Kingdom.
Tommy Fleetwood News
- Nov 16, 2021