Danny Willett returned to the UK as Masters champion on 12 April, telling reporters he is looking to take the victory in his stride. The 28-year-old Englishman took advantage of a shocking back-nine collapse by defending champion and runaway leader Jordan Spieth to win his first major title by three shots at the 80th Masters in Augusta on 10 April.
He became only the second Englishman to win the coveted Green Jacket, following three-times champion Sir Nick Faldo, and ended a barren title run by Europeans dating back to Spaniard Jose Maria Olazabals second victory here in 1999. Speaking to journalists at Manchester Airport, Willett said the magnitude of his achievement was beginning to sink in.
The more you say it... I think you start to realise just what we did last week and everything thats going to go with it. Hopefully we just take it in our stride and enjoy what weve done. Obviously weve had a lot of encouraging messages from a lot of really nice people around the world, offering advice if I need it. Weve got a lot of good people on our side so hopefully we can just take it in out stride and enjoy it, he said.
Willetts participation at this years Masters had been in doubt last month as his wife Nicole was scheduled to give birth on 10 April, but their baby boy Zachariah arrived 12 days ago. After his stunning victory at Augusta National, Willett said he was looking forward to enjoying some time with his family.
Just spending time with Nic and little man [Zachariah] and just enjoying what weve just done, watching it over, seeing the reruns and enjoying just being at home and relaxing and going back to being a dad I guess, go and change some nappies, he said.
Willetts surprise victory at the 80th Masters has almost certainly secured him a debut appearance for Europes Ryder Cup team in September. Willetts victory also sent him into the world top 10 at number nine after entering the week ranked 12th.