The obvious reason for Ian Poulter’s motivation, Harris English continues to cook and a pair of Prez Cup crampons crumble | Golf News and Tour Information
As of this writing, Ian Poulter’s chances of automatically qualifying for the European Ryder Cup squad are slim at best. It is 21st on the list of European points, which puts it 17 places in an automatic auction. On the world points list he is five places behind Shane Lowry, who is currently able to lock in ninth and final automatic place.
This means he is fighting for one of Padraig Harrington’s three captain’s picks, already fierce competition with potential players like Victor Perez, Robert MacIntyre, Guido Migliozzi and Bernd Wiesberger, who occupy the four spots between Poulter and Lowry. . Right behind Poulter? Euro Team mainstays Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose, who, like Poulter, are all firmly outward-looking.
As if Harrington’s decisions weren’t tough enough, Poulter plans to make them even harder, starting this week at TPC Southwind, where he shot rounds of 64 and 66 to hit 10 under. He has three points on Harris English and he already has his eye on Whistling Straits. Poults goes Poults.
“I’ve been in good shape and just want to help Paddy [Harrington] “Poulter said.” I want to make this team, I really want to be on this team for the Ryder Cup. Keep playing golf and it all works out on its own. “
The problem is, time is running out. Yes, Poulter has performed better in recent months, turning his season at WGC-Match Play and posting a T-3 at Colonial and a T-4 at the Scottish Open. But he needs a lot more, starting with a good result this week (preferably a win) and another good effort at Liberty National in two weeks.
“He is [Harrington] got three picks, ”Poulter said. “I would love not to be a pick, and obviously right now it’s in my hands and I would kind of take it away from him and obviously play my way on the team. I know that if I play well this week and play well at Liberty National, I can continue to rack up points. I have to do it to help him. “
Harris English keeps cooking
After ending his career comeback with a victory at the Sentry Tournament of Champions, it would have been very easy for the Englishman to be complacent. Coast to the FedEx Cup qualifiers. Get everything fat and happy. As he’s since proven, he’s neither fat (man is a twig), nor happy with just one comeback victory. He’s already picked another in an epic eight-hole playoff with Kramer Hickock at the Travelers Championship, and he’s on course to win a third this week in Memphis. After a 62 in the first round, English backed him up with a Friday 65, giving him the solo lead heading into the weekend. Outside of the turn of the green, English is in the top 20 in all major stroke winning areas, and he is in the top two for putting, approach and teeing to the green. He’s the ballstriker of the ballstriker, the tactician of the tactician, that’s what’s most impressive about his rebirth. In an era of bomb and gouge, the English are playing for position and letting their elite iron game do the rest.
“A lot of the guys feel like they can master this course or hit the pilot a lot more,” English said. “My main goal on every hole is to hit it down the fairway and whichever club I’m most comfortable with putting the ball on the fairway. Because I feel like my game of iron is really good right now. “
A pair of Prez Cup crampons are going crazy
It’s certainly not a Presidents Cup year, but Abraham Ancer and Cameron Smith played as if it was the 2019 Presidents Cup again on Friday. The duo, who combined a 4-2-2 record as Prez Cup rookies two years ago at Royal Melbourne, combined to 16 under TPC Southwind in the second round, each shooting an eight under 62. Smith did it in a particularly savage way. , requiring only 18 putts (!!). Ancer needed a little more, but that didn’t make his bogey-less, 31-31 turn any less impressive. Southwind can be a brutal track (just ask Jordan Spieth and Brooks Koepka, who are a combined for the week), but Ancer, Smith and English all showed there are very low laps. If there is no cut, it could make the weekend very interesting.
Two guys whose leaders should be very scared
Bryson DeChambeau’s first ride after COVID was surprising, at least for him. The fact that he sort of backed it up on Friday, shooting a 66-under-four to reach nine-cents, is a clear sign that he’s almost back in full swing already. What’s even scarier is that he shot his 66, as he described it, “scrapping it”. If he had to put everything in place on the weekend and split the Par 5s, there’s no reason to believe he won’t be able to get his season back on track with another win.
And then there’s Dustin Johnson, who shot a five-under-65 that included a handful of missed birdie putts that he would consider absolutely doable in his eyes. As a two-time winner on this course, he obviously knows this very well, and now that the rest of his game appears to be returning to world No. 1, putts will soon start to drop at a much higher rate. English, Ancer and Smith are all capable of winning this tournament, but you better sleep with your eyes open tonight.