Danny Willett all smiles and enjoying golfing life on way to Wentworth win
The striking thing about Danny Willett’s performance at the BMW PGA Championship was not his victory but the manner in which he played the event.
A big grin spread across his face more often than not and there was plenty of laughing and joking with caddie Sam Haywood across the four days at Wentworth.
Sitting atop the leaderboard from Friday afternoon onwards gave the Sheffield golfer plenty of reason to smile but his happy demeanour was much more symbolic than that.
This after all is a player who went from the top of the golfing world to the bottom in a matter of months, all played out in the glare of intense scrutiny.
From Masters champion to 462nd in the world in little more than two years as physical wear and tear put paid to his game and helped bring about the mental strife that brought about thoughts of quitting entirely.
It was a long journey back and arguably culminated with victory at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai last November.
But to see him winning again – and another hefty European Tour title at that – will offer more than a gentle reminder that Willett is indeed a force in the game.
And him doing so with a smile on his face will show his mentality is in the same good place as his game, making him one to watch for all the right reasons once again.
The enjoyment factor was a major thing for the 31-year-old over the weekend.
“You know, that's what you want to play the game for,” he said. “You want to be able to enjoy it and have a laugh with the crowds and embrace what you're doing and enjoy all the factors around it.
“There was a lot of time where I didn't enjoy any second of it whatsoever. I think that helps put you in a place where a bad shot on a Sunday in contention can ruin someone's year.
“But I'm incredibly happy within myself where, you know, if that would have happened today, it would have been one of them things.
“I'd have driven home and had a bottle of wine probably and gotten over it and gone and pegged it up next week and that's it.
“We're all where we're supposed to be at that moment in time and fortunately for me, this is where it's ended up.”
Willett will be back in action at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship which is played across St Andrews, Kingsbarns and Carnoustie.