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Sep 12, 2014

McIlroy lurks after rare bounce, strong finish

ATLANTA (Reuters) – A bizarre bounce of his ball into a spectator’s pocket and an unexpected birdie-birdie finish helped Rory McIlroy surge into contention for the Tour Championship with a sizzling display in Friday’s second round.

The world number one, hunting his fifth victory of the year worldwide, fired a five-under-par 65 on a steamy day at East Lake Golf Club to finish at six under, two strokes off the lead in the PGA Tour’s fourth and final playoff event.

Sep 12, 2014

$10 million takes precedence over labor day for Horschel

ATLANTA (Reuters) – In-form American Billy Horschel has a great deal on his mind at this week’s Tour Championship, where a staggering playoff bonus of $10 million is up for grabs while he also prepares for the arrival of his first child.

Horschel’s wife, Brittany, is scheduled to give birth in two weeks’ time but they have agreed that tournament golf and the chance to win FedExCup playoff honors will take precedence if their baby girl makes an earlier arrival than expected.

Sep 11, 2014

Makeshift caddie change no problem for Day at East Lake

ATLANTA (Reuters) – Six days after Jason Day pulled out of the BMW Championship with a back complaint, his caddie was forced to withdraw from the opening round of the elite Tour Championship on Thursday because of a back issue.

Caddie Col Swatton left the course after seven holes and was replaced by Day’s mental coach, Jason Goldsmith, but the switch worked surprisingly well as the Australian went on to card three birdies en route to a three-under-par 67.

Sep 11, 2014

Kirk stays in control of FedExCup with opening 66

ATLANTA (Reuters) – FedExCup points leader Chris Kirk maintained control of the season-long race for playoff honors as he surged into a share of the lead in Thursday’s opening round of the elite Tour Championship.

Kirk, who took over at the top of the standings with his victory at the Deutsche Bank Championship earlier this month, fired a four-under-par 66 to join fellow American Billy Horschel atop the leaderboard in the PGA Tour’s season-ending event.

Sep 10, 2014

‘Worn down’ Furyk stays consistent during busy run

ATLANTA (Reuters) – Playing consistently good tournament golf has allowed “worn down” Jim Furyk to cut back on his practice time in a bid to conserve mental energy during the most hectic stretch of the 2013-14 PGA Tour season.

In Thursday’s opening round of the Tour Championship finale at East Lake Golf Club, Furyk will tee off in his eighth event in a dizzy nine-week run on the U.S. circuit and readily admits that he is feeling a little fatigued.

Sep 10, 2014

Rose close to ‘a great year’ after two 2014 wins

ATLANTA (Reuters) – Tournament wins on both sides of the Atlantic have made 2014 “a good year” for world number five Justin Rose, who says a slightly better showing in the majors would have transformed his campaign into a great one.

For the most part, the Englishman was happy with his performances in golf’s four grand slams where he pinpointed his only blemishes as slow starts at the Masters and U.S. Open, along with an occasional putting lapse.

Sep 10, 2014

Justin Rose close to “a great year” after two 2014 wins

ATLANTA (Reuters) – Tournament wins on both sides of the Atlantic have made 2014 “a good year” for world number five Justin Rose, who says a slightly better showing in the majors would have transformed his campaign into a great one.

For the most part, the Englishman was happy with his performances in golf’s four grand slams where he pinpointed his only blemishes as slow starts at the Masters and U.S. Open, along with an occasional putting lapse.

Sep 10, 2014

Golf-Rose close to “a great year” after two 2014 wins

ATLANTA, Sept 10 (Reuters) – Tournament wins on both sides of the Atlantic have made 2014 “a good year” for world number five Justin Rose, who says a slightly better showing in the majors would have transformed his campaign into a great one.

For the most part, the Englishman was happy with his performances in golf’s four grand slams where he pinpointed his only blemishes as slow starts at the Masters and U.S. Open, along with an occasional putting lapse.

Sep 10, 2014

‘Incredible’ Atlanta homecoming for FedExCup leader Kirk

ATLANTA (Reuters) – American Chris Kirk could not have scripted it any better as he heads into this week’s Tour Championship finale atop the FedExCup standings, in prime position to clinch overall playoff honors in his home town.

The 29-year-old Atlanta native won his second PGA Tour title of the season at the best possible time, clinching the second of four playoff events earlier this month to vault to the top of the FedExCup point list.

Sep 10, 2014

FedExCup title the lure for McIlroy, not $10 million

ATLANTA (Reuters) – While the prospect of earning a $10 million bonus after this week’s Tour Championship finale is tantalizing, Rory McIlroy says he is much more motivated by the chance to win the PGA Tour’s FedExCup trophy for the first time.

The Northern Irish world number one has already enjoyed a brilliant 2014 campaign, clinching two major titles among four wins worldwide, and has now set his sights on claiming playoff honors on the U.S. circuit after a season-long race.