Luke Donald considered quitting golf after dropping out of top 50
Former world number one Luke Donald has revealed he considered retirement last year following a slump in form.
The 38-year-old Englishman topped the rankings in 2012 but has since dropped out of the coveted world top 50 for the first time in more than a decade.
"My confidence had taken a big knock and I asked myself if I wanted to continue doing this," he said.
"Then I told myself not to be a baby, to grow up and realise how lucky I was. I was still playing golf for a living."
Donald is yet to win a major title but has played in four victorious Ryder Cup teams, although he missed out on selection for Europe's win at Gleneagles in 2014, having failed to land a European or PGA tournament since 2012.
"I wasn't enjoying it, finding it so very hard and could not see much light at the end of the tunnel," he told the Daily Telegraph.
Caddie John McLaren decided to end their six-year association last October but Donald found guidance from sports psychologist Michael Gervais, who helped Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner become the first human to break the sound barrier without mechanical assistance.
"He just reminded me that it's up to me what mood or mindset I'm in," Donald added. "When you're in a slump it's easy to forget you're still the one who is in control."
Donald, who has finished third at both the Masters and US PGA Championship and won more than £35m in his career, is now ranked at 78th in the world and needs to return to the top 50 or win on the PGA Tour to qualify for a 12th consecutive Masters at Augusta in April.
"I think I have a little way to go, but I'm feeling confident that I can get back to at least close to a level I was a few years ago," he added.