Richard McEvoy had waited 17 years and played in 285 European Tour events before he lifted his first title.
And if that wasn’t enough to get the headline writers excited, the 39-year-old did it by holding off the PGA Tour’s golden boy of 2018, Bryson DeChambeau.
A week after a tie for 51st in just his second appearance at The Open, DeChambeau hung around another week to play at the Porsche European Open in Hamburg, a city from which his family descends.
But it was to end in controversial circumstances. DeChambeau – a two-time PGA Tour winner at this point and has since added two more – finished the tournament 6-6-3-8 to hand McEvoy, his playing partner for the entire weekend, the chance to finally break his duck.
DeChambeau then caused a storm on social media by appearing to not shake McEvoy’s hand, but the 39-year-old Englishman is keen to clear that incident up.
In part one of a two-part interview, he talks NCG through his weekend with the Mad Scientist…
Talk us through that handshake.
— Noel Gallagher (@estshuffle) July 29, 2018
He got a lot of stick for it but there was no need for it.
At the end of the day he shook my hand and said congratulations. I didn’t actually take anything of it in as I was in my own zone having won my first event. Then I saw that he was getting a lot of stick, people thought he hadn’t even shaken my hand but it was just a camera angle.
Did you talk much throughout the weekend?
We chatted a lot on the Saturday and got on really well, just about how the tours worked and life in general. On Sunday there was a bit less chat but I liked him, he’s a very different individual but a really nice guy.
Did his poor finish help or hinder you?
It probably would have got to me but on that Sunday in particular I was so focused on doing my own job and winning the tournament so that was all that was in my head.
I got on with what I was doing and that helped me and I wasn’t watching what he was doing. You are just looking at the top of that leaderboard and trying to get to the score that was going to win. In the past that might have affected me but I wasn’t too bothered.
What did you make of DeChambeau’s methods?
You can learn so much from him. It all seems quite complicated but it makes a lot of sense. The amount of numbers that he goes into is phenomenal – and to then hit a golf shot, I don’t know how he does it.
Some of the stuff you don’t understand it. On the greens he works out the pace and the exact Stimp before playing.
He has a ruler which he takes back a certain distance for a certain putt. He’s training himself to get his pace right, which is very clever, but there is so much that goes into it on different speeds of greens. In Scotland they were 9 to 9.5 in the wind and at Walton Heath something like 12 or 13.
There is so much that goes into it but it does make sense.
He’ll then calculate the slope levels, the breaks and then he works out a footage to hit the putt over.
Click here or part two of our interview with Richard McEvoy, in which he opens up about his career to date.