The heat provided challenging conditions on the China golf course, but Kieran Muir didn't let the hot weather get the better of him. The 31-year-old touring golf professional opens up about the highs and lows of playing in the Huangshan Open in China this month. He talks to reporter Zoe Hunter about how he managed to overcome testing conditions to win the trophy.
Be authentic because you need to believe in what you are doing, to be able to fully commit to it.
That is one of touring golf professional Kieran Muir's top tips.
The Ōmokoroa-based professional won the Huangshan Open in China on Sunday, scoring nine under par after four rounds between August 19-25.
But his success didn't come without a challenge.
Muir said the heat made the first two days at Huangshan Pine Golf Club taxing.
"[It was] Probably some of the most testing conditions I have had to play in," he said.
But the 31-year-old was extremely proud of his performance on Friday, scoring two under par and giving him a confidence boost heading into the weekend.
"I think the manner in which I turned around the double bogey on the ninth hole Sunday to birdie the next three was a reflection of how quickly you can change your mindset and momentum," he said.
To finish with a total score of 279 (-9) after four rounds was "certainly pleasing" for Muir.
"Maybe it's a little cliché, but these are the moments we train for," he said.
"To be able to test your systems, show some success and then be able to take away lessons from it, that's pretty cool."
Although, Muir admitted the win didn't really sink in until after he had walked off the green and was taking the 10-minute ride in the golf cart back to the clubhouse.
"I took a few moments to myself to reflect," he said.
"Mainly on how thankful I am for all the support I have received, and hopefully I have done a few of those people proud so far."
Muir said the week was a great chance to self-audit and manage himself in a testing environment.
"I showed some promising signs, but there are still areas for improvement," he said.
"Every week on tour is an opportunity to learn and progress so I try to treat them all on their own merits."
Muir will have another two weeks in China, alongside Mount Maunganui pro golfer Hayden Beard, to continue to progress.
He has also moved into second on the Order of Merit with five events left in the season. The winner of the Order of Merit gains a full European Tour card for the 2020 season, which is his ultimate goal.
"This has never changed. But my lifestyle is more about balance nowadays and the number I post at the end of a round of golf is no longer what controls my happiness," he said.
"Letting go of that in the last 18 months has actually allowed me to perform better."
What the rest of 2019 has in store for Muir will be a mixed bag of events throughout New Zealand, Australia and China (including two European Challenge Tour events).
"I will wait to see what opportunities present themselves before committing to any qualifying schools just yet," he said.
Kieran Muir's top five tips
Some form of goal-setting is vital.
Be authentic. Because you need to believe in what you are doing, to be able to fully commit to it.
Time is not your enemy, but thinking it is will be.
Surround yourself with a team of like-minded people, friends included.
Have fun and enjoy what you do in and out of your career.