I turned 40 on April 19 and given the current conditions, we were obviously limited in what we could do in Arizona and how many people you could have over to celebrate.
We had a couple of people over in the backyard for a couple of drinks and that was about it. It wasn’t how I was planning on spending my 40th, but it was still fun.
During the suspension of the PGA Tour I got to spend a lot of time with my kids, which I’ve never been able to do before. I’ve never spent any time with my children when they were first born, and I have a nearly two-year-old right now along with an eight and six-year-old. She got three months with me along with my wife and my other two daughters, which was the best part of it for me – having so much time with my family.
Home-schooling my two eldest kids, Saber and Savannah, was tough. They attend a Spanish immersion school and I don’t speak Spanish. It’s 60 minutes in English and the rest of the day in Spanish, so that was the toughest part for me. My wife had a lot of work to do while I spent most of the time chasing our two-year-old, Simone, around the house.
Now that I’m 40 I’m in the back half of my career on the PGA Tour, I’m sure. That’s something my wife, Melissa, and I have talked about. At what age would you retire? At what age would you think about doing that so you can still be there for your kids?
“At what age would you think about retiring so you can still be there for your kids?” – Matt Jones
I’ve been on the road for a lot of their lives so it’s something I really enjoyed being able to do, and it’s something that I’m sure I will think about in a few more years when they’re getting bigger and they’ve got things like sport and school that I’m going to miss out on.
As for the beard that came out of lockdown with me… let’s just say that when your wife likes it, you tend to keep going with it.
Winning is very tough to do in this sport and winning the Australian Open against such a strong field last December was a big boost for me. I came back to Australia just for one purpose, and that was to win that golf tournament.
To win two Australian Opens is amazing and it’s something I’ll be very proud of, I’m sure, when I’m older and I can look back on it.
As for what winning a second time did for my place in Australian golf, I honestly don’t think about it. I can’t remember how many people have won the Australian Open multiple times but I’ve never been one that cared about recognition at all. That means nothing to me. In my mind it’s just something the media makes up.
If I’m happy and I believe that I’ve done everything I can to be the best golfer and person I can be, that’s all the recognition I need within myself. That will make me happy.
I’ve always loved to play sport and compete. If I can compete and give it my all every time and if I can look at myself in the mirror and know that I didn’t give up and I fought as hard as I can and it wasn’t good enough, that’s still fine by me.
It’s not about wins for me at all. It’s about whether I can look at myself and be happy with what I’ve done.