Tuesday 25 June 2019

McDowell and Power aim to stay on upward curve

Seamus Power is looking forward to getting into contention at Lahinch. Photo: Getty
Seamus Power is looking forward to getting into contention at Lahinch. Photo: Getty

Brian Keogh

Seamus Power and Graeme McDowell will be looking to take a big step into the summer in the Charles Schwab Challenge in Texas.

McDowell is determined to qualify for The Open and with the top five and ties inside Top 20 in the FedEx Cup on June 23 winning exemptions, victory at Colonial Country Club could seal his ticket home to Royal Portrush. He was 29th in Fort Worth last year and he's relieved he will not face the same driving test he did at the US PGA.

"I knew I was going to have a very tough time competing against the likes of Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy," McDowell said after finishing 29th at Bethpage.

"It was always a golf course where I was going to run into a brick wall."

It's also a chance for Power to build on three recent top-20 finishes and make sure he heads to Lahinch for the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open with his PGA Tour card secure.

"That was one of the things Paul McGinley spoke to me about," he said.

"Get playing well over there so you have some points in the bag and you can enjoy the experience much more.

"I was lucky I was able to do that last month and hopefully I can keep it up before coming home to Ireland and if I am in good form, getting myself into contention in Lahinch."

The field at Colonial includes 18 of the world's top 50 with defending champion Justin Rose, Francesco Molinari and a resurgent Jordan Spieth in the field.

On the European Tour, England's Matt Wallace is the favourite for the Made In Denmark at Himmerland, where Paul Dunne, Gavin Moynihan and Michael Hoey are also in action.

Criticism

Paul McGinley and Darren Clarke make their debuts in the Senior PGA Championship at Oak Hill in New York where John Daly will ride in a cart for the second week running.

McGinley (52) tees it up with Daly, who was stung by media criticism of the decision to allow him to use a buggy under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) at Bethpage Black

"What really p***es me off is people downing guys, downing women who have ADA problems," said Daly, who suffers from arthritis in his knee.

"Because if you don't know what ADA is, it honestly sucks. I felt embarrassed driving a golf cart in a Major. That Major. But, I want to play and I want to be competitive and the only way I can do it is in a golf cart."

As McIlroy confirmed yesterday that he'll play the Aberdeen Scottish Investments Scottish Open the week before The Open, Leona Maguire is also seeking form ahead of a Major.

She's seeking her third Symetra Tour win of the season in the Zimmer Biomet Championship in Alabama before heading for Charleston for next week's US Women's Open.

Now ranked 174th in the world after her win in Charlotte last week, she's not tempted to take her foot off the gas, despite opening up a $21,864 lead at the top of the money list with the top 10 awarded LPGA Tour cards

Stephanie Meadow plays the LPGA Tour's Pure Silk Championship in Virginia as her build-up for the US Women's Open, while on the Challenge Tour, Paul McBride, Conor O'Rourke, Ruaidhri McGee, Robin Dawson and Cormac Sharvin play the D+D REAL Czech Challenge at Kaskáda Golf Resort.

Made in Denmark, Live, Sky Sports, 10.30am

Charles Schwab Challenge, Live, Sky Sports, 1.0pm

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