Schauffele refusing to rest on his laurels
Xander Schauffele says he is still behind the best players in the game despite his marvelous Sentry Tournament of Champions victory.
Trailing fellow American Gary Woodland by five strokes going into the final round in Hawaii, Schauffele started the day off with a bogey to slip further behind and a victory at that point looked highly unlikely.
However, the 25-year-old produced a masterclass over his next 17 holes as he made eight birdies and two eagles at Kapalua to sign for a superb 11-under-par 62, matching the course record at the Plantation Course.
Schauffele finished on -23, beating Woodland by one stroke, to land his fourth PGA Tour title and this latest triumph has seen him climb to sixth in the world rankings.
Although now firmly seen as a leading player in the game, the Californian is refusing to put himself in the upper echelons of the sport, insisting he still has a lot of work to do.
"I still feel like an underdog," Schauffele was quoted as saying by golfaustralia.com. "Until you're World No.1, you're chasing. Guys like Justin (Thomas) and Brooks (Koepka) keep putting that flag way out there for me to chase but I feel like I'm doing that.
"(This win) is a stepping stone in the right direction but the end goal is to (win) wire-to-wire and obviously a major would be nice."
James Mason grew up in Northumberland so is entrenched in both the football and golf scenes. A low handicap golfer, he also follows Newcastle United and predicts big things under Rafa Benitez.