SÉAMUS POWER took a big step towards his Masters debut when he started his WGC Dell Technologies Matchplay campaign with an emphatic 5-4 win over Sungjae Im.
ower slammed the door on Im after following a stable but unspectacular front nine with a clinical putting performance on the home straight at the Austin Country Club.
Two in the lead after the South Korean bogeyed the first two holes, the West Waterford man shagged the ninth to turn two before following a clumsy bogey on the 10th with birdies on the 11th, 12th, 13th and 14th , to achieve a priceless victory.
The world’s top 50 are getting invites to Augusta next Monday and while Power (35) at No. 48 would be very unfortunate to be passed after a point on the board now, he can make the Masters his first Major by winning the first place or second in the group.
“Yeah, it was interesting,” said Power, who started his bid for a place on the European Ryder Cup team by joining the DP World Tour, and now the world number four and US Ryder Cup -Star Patrick Cantlay hits who helped power halve Keith Mitchell.
“I didn’t get much going in the first nine. He made a few mistakes that I was able to take advantage of. I made a real mess at 10 which is disappointing. I was back on 1-up and he was nice of the lost momentum when I hit him in the water at 11 and I was able to capitalize and make birdies on the last three.
“Yeah it’s nice to get a point on the board. It’s my first time playing here so I wasn’t sure what to expect but one on one so it’s a good start.”
Hoping to maintain his putting form against Cantlay, he said: “I know there will be the same breeze tomorrow so I hope it will play the same but it’s a very enjoyable course in great condition, and you I’ll definitely see some putts.”
Meanwhile in California, Leona Maguire is focused on the JTBC Classic rather than next week’s inaugural major, the Chevron Championship.
“This week is all about this week, I’m trying to play as best as I can this week and when Sunday night comes around we’re going to turn our attention to Chevron,” Maguire said at the Aviara Golf Club in Carlsbad, where she was met by Stephanie meadow is supported.
At the Corales Puntacana Championship in the Dominican Republic, 2019 winner Graeme McDowell is optimistic about his game and patiently waiting for it to click.
“I need those weeks where you get some good placements and get that confidence and belief in yourself,” McDowell said.
Jonathan Caldwell, Cormac Sharvin and Niall Kearney are in the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, while Richard O’Donovan, Gavin Moynihan and John Murphy are in the Challenge Tour SDC Open in South Africa.
https://www.independent.ie/sport/golf/seamus-power-takes-giant-step-towards-masters-debut-with-opening-win-at-wgc-match-play-in-austin-41481137.html Seamus Power takes a big step toward Masters debut with opening win at WGC Match Play in Austin