SAN DIEGO – Matthew Wolff is only a small head start on the weekend at the US Open, and the person who is most surprised by this development could be Wolff himself.

“My confidence was shaken” said Wolff, who is making his first start in two months after a mental break. “I came here with no expectations. My expectations were to enjoy it and be happy, and I didn’t even know if I could do it. Luckily I am and play well. ”

After a wild 70th opening round that only consisted of five pars, Wolff was calmer and more complete on Friday. At the par-5 finisher in Torrey Pines, he discharged a 360-yard blast that left him only 214 yards to the flag. He made two putts from 15 feet for a final birdie to shoot 68 and post 4 under 138, just one shot from half the lead.

It seemed like old Wolff was back – the monster drives, the megawatts – Smile, the wolf howl from the crowd – but he later revealed that he is still in the process of healing himself. He said it was difficult to get out of bed on Thursday and Friday because he wanted to stay. Where he was safe and comfortable. Where he’s been out of the spotlight.

“It’s all about managing the fear,” he said. “What’s the worst that can happen? Could I miss the cut? This really is the worst that can happen, but your brain makes you think that you will hit a bad shot and the world is over or you will be physically injured or something. That wasn’t my concern, but it’s just so hard. …

“It’s great that I got out of here and played well, but I think, more importantly, I’m getting closer and closer to being more comfortable and happy and enjoying it. I feel like I managed to enjoy it very well, but I still have a long way to go to keep my cool. ”

Watson, Wolff strong in the second round of the US Open

Now that he’s able to win his first major, Wolff was asked how a win would change him.

“Even though I’m happy right now, being first in the lead, I could That really doesn’t matter now, “he said. “I know you might think I’m cops to beat you up, but I am not. Right now, my absolute focus is just having fun and being happy. It’s probably no coincidence that I play well, but that’s been the main focus for the whole week and probably for a while. ”

BY Rex Hoggard

BY Rex Hoggard

BY Rex Hoggard

A wild, improbable, climax-filled US Open round didn’t suddenly fix all of Matthew Wolff’s problems, but it did put him in a mood after the round that he hadn’t seen in a while.

It’s been nine months since Matthew Wolff almost won the US Open. A very long nine months on and off the course.

Matthew Wolff won’t have another chance to repeat his PGA Championship debut. He was eliminated from the tournament on Tuesday evening.