Graeme McDowell scorched home in 30 to keep his victory hopes on life support but Seamus Power is just three shots off the lead in the FedEx St Jude Classic in Memphis.
The West Waterford man knows he must pick up a high finish soon to ease the pressure as he bids to retain his PGA Tour card
And he took a big step in the right direction on Friday when he made six birdies in a five-under 65 to move up 23 places to tied sixth on six-under par at TPC Southwind.
He’s three strokes behind Chez Reavie (65), Sebastian Munoz (67) and Charl Schwartzel (66), who lead by one stroke on nine under from Stewart Cink (68) with Ben Crane alone in fifth on seven-under.
But Power will be pleased to have had just 26 putts in an all-around excellent second round.
Currently 144th in the FedEx Cup rankings, he would move inside the Top 125 should he remain tied for sixth.
But the Waterford native will be looking to put four rounds together for the first time this year and contend for a win that would secure his card and all that goes with it.
That’s why he’s not looking for an invitation to the Irish Open at Portstewart in July but preparing to tee it up in the clashing Greenbrier Classic.
“It’s unlikely I will play this year,” he said via mobile before his second round. “I can’t afford to miss any starts over here being outside the top 125 right now.
“If I had played a little better earlier I would have been trying my hardest to get a spot.”
It’s been a good season for Power, who has made 11 of 16 cuts and earned $290,836 to move up to 339th in the world.
But he’s outside the all important top 125 in the FedEx Cup and knows he must produce a low weekend somewhere to grab the win or top-three finish that would clinch his card ahead of time having posted several disappointing third or fourth rounds when contending earlier this year.
“I’m feeling okay,” he said. “I’ve had lots of tournaments with two or three solid rounds but haven’t put it all together yet. But I have a lot of golf coming up so I’m looking forward to it.”
McDowell looked to be heading for an early trip home before US Open when he made two birdies, four bogeys and a double-bogey on the back nine at TPC Southwind to go out in four-over 39.
At three-over for the tournament, he looked odds on to miss the cut. But armed with a hot putter, he had just 10 putts on the back nine as he came back in 30 with a lone bogey in the fifth cancelled out by birdies at the second, third, fourth, sixth, seventh and a chip-in birdie at the ninth.
It all added up to a second successive 69 that leaves him tied for 34th, seven shots off the lead.
from News – Irish Golf Desk http://ift.tt/2r5cx7I