Eyes on President’s Cup, Lahiri’s PGA Tour card official now
As the 28-year-old Bengaluru golfer, prepared for a landmark appearance at the biennial President’s Cup at the Jack Nicklaus Golf and Country Club in Incheon, his other quest of a PGA Tour card was fomalised on Sunday night with the completion of the 2016 Web.com Tour Final series.
Lahiri ended 16th in the Finals money list and ensured a proper status which will enable him to play more than 12 events, a number that limited his starts because he was a non-member. If Lahiri stays in Top-50 – he is 39th right now – he should get a lot of starts apart from Majors and WGC events.
“That’s done. I feel I had done the job (PGA card),” Lahiri said soon after pulling out of the last two events of the Final series after finishing T-6th and T-16 in the first two events and banking US $ 49,750.
A total of 50 cards are given out at the end of the Web.com Tour Final Series, with 25 going to toppers of the regular season money list and another 25 to the leaders of the Finals series Money list.
Lahiri, winner of Malaysian Open and Hero Indian Open, which catapulted him into Top-50 of the world and opened doors to the biggest events around the world, is now keen to get into Top-20 or 25.
“I have a lot of events still left this season and many of them are big events with a lot of points, so I want to try for that,” he said on the eve of the President’s Cup.
On his PGA quest, he said, “One of my big goals soon after PGA Championships (where he finished T-5) was to ensure a status for myself, which would allow me to have more than starts, than the 12, which is a ceiling for non-members. It has been a great year, lot of learning, lots of <g data-gr-id="36">discovery</g> and the best part is, that it is continuing.”
Lahiri is in Korea with his childhood coach and mentor, Vijay Divecha who was also present at the Open. “I planned to have him with me every 3-4 months to take a look at my game,” he said.
In Korea Lahiri, always a great enthusiast when it comes to team events, will have for company a bunch of Asia-born players, including Thongchai Jaidee, winner of the European Open recently, and Danny Lee, who was in Top-5 at the PGA Tour Championships.
Lahiri has becomes the third Indian after Arjun Atwal and Jeev Milkha Singh to hold a PGA Tour card. Atwal did that by winning the Wyndham Championships in 2010 and before that Jeev, who topped the Asian Tour Money List in 2006 and 2008, had the PGA Tour card from 2008-2010 on the strength of his performances, which included a Top-10 at 2008 PGA and T-4 at the World Golf Championships in 2009. He played 15 events on PGA Tour in 2009 and 19 events in 2010.