Trevor’s confidence bolstered by Ernie

Trevor Immelman has played tentatively throughout the year, but he’ll be brimming with confidence when he tees up with Ernie Els at the Frys.com Open this week.

Immelman shot to stardom with his 2008 Masters win, which followed a Saturday night call from Gary Player, during which the Black Knight told him to believe in himself during the final round at Augusta National.

Els could take over the mentoring mantle this week. The Big Easy earned his second Claret Jug earlier this year thanks to some smart golf at The Old Course. Add to this his fourth-place result at the Frys.com last year, during which he led greens in regulation, and you can be sure that the Els will bring plenty of confidence to the party. That will play a crucial role in helping Immelman settle down at CordeValle Golf Club this week.

For the younger South African, sharing two rounds with Els could prove to be very, very valuable. Immelman finished tied 21st at Frys.com last year, and has two top-30s from his last four starts. But that’s really the issue – he’s producing good enough rounds, but he can’t string four of them together – and that, in turn, indicates a deficit outside of his physical game.

His top-10 finishes have tailed off from 20 in 2009, to two last year, to none this year. But the 32-year-old has made 13 cuts in 22 starts, which is not far off his 18 cuts in 25 starts last year. The deeper into the figures one delves, the more it becomes apparent that Immelman’s skill hasn’t waned.

And that bring us to confidence, which he could very well find when he shares 36 holes with the Big Easy. Those first two rounds may just spark Immelman’s return to greatness.

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