The 'Guvnor' is back…or so he keeps telling himself this week at the US Open. But whereas Nick Faldo has flattered to deceive since his last major win in 1996 at The Masters, this week at Pebble Beach, he is aiming for his seventh Major title in thirteen visits to the US Open.
Faldo only needs the US Open and the USPGA to join the highest echelons of World Golf, Grand Slam winners, currently only a select few have managed it…Sarazen, Hogan, Nicklaus and Player.
"It has always been one of my priorities…to win the Grand Slam…It all feels good. Generally it's a case of picking your spots on this course. Said the former World beater.
"If the greens are rock hard, we have to have a second game plan. In the final round of '92, the way to play the 13th and 17th holes was to knock it in the bunker, because at least then you were below the hole." He added.
The US Open has always held high priority in Faldo's quest for the Grand Slam of four majors. Currently he has claimed just half of the required four events and has been desperately unlucky, a la Monty, in the US Open.
In 1988, his final putt on the 72nd hole lipped out for the win and he duly lost a playoff against a rampant Curtis Strange at Brookline Country Club.
"But that spurred me on to win Our Open Championship" Said Faldo.
And this week, those memories of past success are flooding back to England finest ever player.
As usual with Faldo, his game-plan is set and his motivation is unquestionable as his long time hero, Jack Nicklaus, always said it was his favourite course and Faldo is planning to make this a special week for himself as it is Jack's last appearance in a US Open.
"I love it here, it's so special. It is perhaps the most atmospheric course in America, all the surroundings are beautiful and it was Jack's favourite". Said Faldo with a wry grin on his face.
And its all change in the caddie department as Murray Lott is missing and has been replaced by Swedish Sports Psychologist Kjell Enhagen who is on is on bag duties this week.
Who knows? He has been written off before, many times. Then he won at Muirfield in 1992 and thanked the Press "from the heart of his bottom" then with his Masters win in 1996 over Greg Norman he slipped on his third green jacket.
It is a good job pencils come with rubbers on the end of them isn't it!