Sunday 18 February 2018

Rory and Padraig in need of WGC spark

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy

Karl MacGinty

RORY McILROY once again will find himself under a microscope as he tries to recover top form at this week's Bridgestone Invitational – and Padraig Harrington will be under just as much pressure to save his season in the Reno-Tahoe Open.

After playing just four rounds of competitive golf in the past seven weeks, McIlroy (above) badly needs the 72 holes of World Golf Championship action he's guaranteed at Firestone.

Interestingly, the 24-year-old has dropped off the radar since missing the cut at Muirfield last Friday week. Without even a tweet appearing in his name, it suggests he has battened down the hatches in practice to prepare himself for the second half of the season.

Harrington, meanwhile, is 123rd in the PGA Tour's FedEx Points list, precariously close to the 125-man cut-off for next month's first play-off, The Barclays.

So he needs to deliver the goods in Nevada this week, the PGA at Oak Hill next week or the Wyndham Championship the week after to join the dollar and world points-fest at the four FedEx play-offs.

Harrington must tuck away more birdies than the paltry six he made in 72 holes both at the US and British Opens to make an impact under the modified stableford points format in Reno. He needs that belly putter to start working!

Irish Independent

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