Ian Poulter is relishing his first taste of the Waste Management Phoenix Open tomorrow (thurs) when he lines up alongside local hero Phil Mickelson in the opening two rounds.
Fresh from his World Golf Championship success in Tucson last week, Poults is in buoyant mood having shot up to no.5 in the world rankings.
It's a world away from his days as a humble assistant pro at Bedfordshire's Leighton Buzzard GC, a fact he happily reflected on in his pre-tournament press conference.
He said: "Did I ever think I'd get to no. 5 in the world? I don't know what I was thinking to be honest when I was working in the shop at Leighton Buzzard.
"I was craving to get out though because I wanted to play and always felt I had a chance that if I applied myself properly I could achieve anything I put my mind to."
Asked if he felt trappd in the club shop, he responded: "No I wasn't trapped. I had a great boss in Lee Scarbrow (TG's teaching pro) who was my professional and the two assistants, including myself, rotated and took turns to go and practice.
"Mind you, at weekends we had to be there at 6am and I'd be driving like a lunatic down the lanes to get there just in time to open the shop... or think of some excuse why I was 20mins late!
Poults is clearly on the up and up, adding: "I'm in a nice position at the moment. My golf is good and hopefully we can push it even further."