Patrick Reed is often remembered for proclaiming himself as one of the top five golfers in the world but he has his sights firmly set on Number One after winning his first Major Championship at the Masters Tournament.
When the American – then ranked 44th in the Official World Golf Ranking – declared after becoming the youngest ever winner of a World Golf Championship in 2014 that he was one of the world’s best, some in the golfing world were sceptical and even critical about his claim.
He has not yet made the top five but his dramatic one-shot victory over Rickie Fowler at Augusta National on Sunday means he is a member of a more elite club – he has a Green Jacket.
The 27 year old is now aiming for more glory as he looks to get to Number One and continue to prove the doubters wrong.
“I feel that I’ve played some golf that I need to play in order to get to where I want to be, and that’s to be the best golfer in the world,” he said. “The way you’re going to do that is perform in these big events and to win these big events.
“Growing up, everyone always dreamed about winning Augusta, winning the Masters. Every time you think about it as a kid growing up, it’s always, ‘this putt is to win a Green Jacket, this putt’s to win the Masters’.
“I think that’s just because of the history and everything that’s gone on here at Augusta National and how special it is to all the golfers and special it is to just golf in general around the world.”
Reed began the day three shots ahead of four-time Major Championship winner Rory McIlroy, with the duo playing in the final group and many expecting the afternoon to turn into a match play battle between two players who enjoyed a brilliant singles duel at the 2016 Ryder Cup.
In the end it did not pan out that way, with Fowler emerging as Reed’s nearest challenger, but Reed admits the backing for McIlroy from some pundits and patrons at Augusta National spurred him on on Sunday.
I feel that I’ve played some golf that I need to play in order to get to where I want to be, and that’s to be the best golfer in the world – Patrick Reed
“Today was definitely probably the hardest mentally a round of golf could possibly be,” he said.
“At The Ryder Cup, it’s just a totally different type of pressure. You go to a Ryder Cup and you feel like you have a whole nation on your back. If you win or lose your match, you still have a bunch of other guys there that could pick it up.
“When I step up here, I was going in with a Sunday lead, listening to all the analysts this morning when I was watching golf, and every single one of them picked Rory except me, besides for Notah (Begay III).
“I walked up to the first tee and had a really welcoming cheer from the fans but then when Rory walked up to the tee his cheer was a little louder.
“But that’s another thing that just kind of played into my hand. Not only did it fuel my fire a little bit but also it just takes the pressure off of me and adds it back to him.
“I just went out there and just tried to play golf the best I could and tried to stay in the moment and not worry about everything else.”
Reed’s ability to handle pressure has never been in question and he now has the title of Major champion to go alongside WGC champion and Ryder Cup talisman.
Will he one day add World Number One to that list? You’d be a brave person to bet against him.