Monday 22 January 2018

Donald eyes top-two finish in Florida

Mark Garrod

WORLD number one Luke Donald will need to finish first or second in this week's final PGA Tour event to keep alive his dream of becoming the first player to top the money lists on both sides of the Atlantic in the same season.

Webb Simpson now leads the race in America by more than $363,000 US dollars (€261,000) after finishing runner-up at the McGladrey Classic in Georgia last night.

Yet it could have been worse for Donald. Simpson missed a putt of under four feet to lose to Ben Crane on the second play-off hole.

"Finishing second is going to make it a lot harder for Luke," said the 26-year-old Simpson, who is in only his third full season as a professional.

"But I'm sure he's going to play well. He's played well almost every week this year. I still wouldn't be surprised if I have a little work to do.

"He's had a week off, so I'm sure he's rested and ready. It would be nice to run away with it, but it wouldn't surprise me if it's going to be pretty close."

The final PGA Tour event is the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic in Florida, starting on Thursday.

Donald is over £1million ahead of second-placed Rory McIlroy on Europe's "Race to Dubai", but that battle still has two months to run.

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