Emiliano Grillo hopes return to Colonial sparks turnaround

Defending champion Emiliano Grillo hopes to turn his season around this week at the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas.

The Argentina native arrives at Colonial Country Club after missed cuts at the PGA Championship and the Masters and only one top-10 finish since mid-January, a T8 at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March.

Grillo, 31, told reporters on Tuesday that his game is “not where I want it to be” as he returns to the scene of his second PGA Tour win.

“I’m working really hard on it. I wish I could say different right now. The last month and a half or so it’s been tough, but this is golf, everybody knows this,” he said. “You can’t always play good. When you don’t, you just have to keep grinding, get through the storm and enjoy the sunny days more than ever.”

Grillo survived a double bogey on the 72nd hole and defeated Adam Schenk on the second playoff hole last year for his first victory since 2015.

“I kind of forgot what it was like winning and all the people, you know, all my family, friends, people that I know that were so excited,” he said. “I think some people was even more excited than I was. I thought I was excited, but, you know, that shows you the friendships that I’ve made through the years. So it’s kind of nice.

“I would say the best part (about being back at Colonial) is just seeing the players also feeling really happy for me and that kind of put perspective of how hard it is to win out here, how hard it is to, having the chance of winning a tournament and everybody gets like happy when you get it done and because everybody knows how hard, how much time we have to put into this and all the effort. So it’s kind of nice.”

The course at Colonial has undergone several changes since last year, including being extended by almost 90 yards to 7,289 yards.

“The greens are going to be new, they’re going to be hard. If we get some rain like it’s expected it’s going to be playing a little bit longer, and with harder greens, so that’s a tough combination,” Grillo said. “New reads, new contours, new everything, so I got to go out today and do my homework and pretend it’s a place I’ve never played.

“I’m assuming most of the lines will be the same, it will be just playing different on the second shots and around the greens. So I got to go out and do my homework and, like I said, I haven’t been playing well, so I got to keep grinding and get out of the hole.”

Grillo also has a top-10 finish this season at January’s Sony Open (T7) and is at No. 52 in the Official World Golf Ranking.

–Field Level Media