World number six Henrik Stenson admits time is running out as he tries to become the first male Swedish player to win a major title.
Stenson had recorded 13 top-four finishes without a victory before claiming his first win since November 2014 in the BMW International Open in Germany a fortnight ago.
But having turned 40 in April, the Ryder Cup star knows the odds are against him claiming one of the game’s four biggest prizes given the high level of competition.
“We know chances aren’t going to increase the older you get and I think the big change compared to way back is the young players. They are more ready to go at an earlier age,” Stenson said ahead of the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open.
“Competition is getting stronger every year and you’ve got to work harder as an older player to stay on top of your game. Overall, I’m feeling in pretty good shape (although) I’ve got my niggles like everyone else. But I’m trying to manage them and I think I’m in a pretty good spot.”
Stenson is hoping the Scottish Open returning to Castle Stuart will prove to be a good omen having finished third here in 2013 and then second in the Open at Muirfield the following week.
“I didn’t play in the next two years and I didn’t do well at the Open Championship so I think for myself it’s definitely better to be competitive the week before a major when possible,” Stenson added.
“And also in terms of links golf, it always takes a few rounds, a few days to get used to the difference in playing links compared to target golf like we play most other weeks.
“I think it’s great to have the Scottish the week before the Open and to have it on a links course. Loch Lomond is a lovely venue but wasn’t ideal potentially for that reason. You’re playing a fairly soft and receptive golf course the week before you’re going on to links.”