Collin Morikawa, looking for more after historic year, aims to be No. 1

Collin Morikawa had a historic 2021.

When he claimed the Claret Jug at the British Open at Royal St. George’s, he became the only player in history to earn two different major league debuts. He also joined Gene Sarazen, Bobby Jones, Jack Nicklaus, Seve Ballesteros, Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth as the only players in the past 100 years to win multiple majors before turning 25.

And he became the first American to win the Race to Dubai when he won the DP World Tour Championship. He also won the WGC-Workday Championship at the dealership and was 3-0-1 and took the American victory in his Ryder Cup debut.

However, the world number 2 was not satisfied.

“It wasn’t all I wanted,” he said before the start of the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii. “I think the consistency factor wasn’t quite there for what I kind of rehearsed since turning pro.”

It comes from a guy who had 13 top 10 finishes in 24 world starts.

“Looking back there are a lot of positives that I will definitely make sure to continue to feed from. I think you it’s a great thing to not only look at the negatives and not the negatives but to look at the positives of what I’ve done well, and I’ve definitely been able to do that and how do you improve from that,” Morikawa added. “But there’s also a lot of aspects about which I want to continue working on and that’s what’s great about what we do.”

Never be satisfied fueled the 24-year-old, who capped off his year by getting engaged to his longtime girlfriend, Katherine Zhu. He is always tinkering, always looking to improve, always looking for another triumph.

Drive for No. 1

After a long hiatus, Morikawa returns to work Thursday at the Plantation course in Kapalua, where he’s tied for seventh in each of his two previous starts. And among the many goals he is aiming for, there is that of becoming the world number 1.

“It’s been a dream all my life to get to No. 1 in the world, but it’s not just about getting to No. 1, it’s about maintaining it,” he said.

There are five scenarios this week in which Morikawa can pass world No. 1 Jon Rahm, one being if he were to win and Rahm finishes worse than second in solo.

“Everything is under my control. All I can do is try to win the tournament and that’s all I’m going to focus on,” Morikawa said. “It’s a huge goal, it always has been, and it means something that when you get there, it means you do something good or at least a good amount of things. It’s just about continue this process and it’s not like it’s a peak, that I get to #1 and can go and retire and relax on the beach, like there’s still so much that I will keep pushing myself when, if or when it happens.


Check out the yardage book: Kapalua’s Plantation Course for the Sentry Tournament of Champions

Kapalua Plantation

Kapalua Plantation

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