Séamus Power’s upward trending on all the standings that matter most to him – the FedEx Cup, the world rankings – are set to ensure a rescheduling of his tournament itinerary sooner rather than later.
In breaking into the world's top-50 for the first time following his third place finish in the Sony Open in Hawaii, where Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama defeated Russell Henley in a playoff, Power not only has the Masters at Augusta National in April in his sights but also a debut appearance in the limited-field WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
Power is already in the field for The Players – which this year boasts a purse of $20 million (€17.5 million)– in March but, two weeks after that Sawgrass showpiece, the 34-year-old Waterford man is set to play in the match play event in Austin, Texas which has a prizefund of $12 million (€10.5 million).
Power’s form of 2021, when he secured a breakthrough career win on the PGA Tour in the Barbasol Championship, has continued into 2022 with the trajectory evident in both the FedEx Cup (where he is up to 14th) and also in the world rankings (up to 49th, just one place behind Shane Lowry). The cut-off for Masters eligibility comes the week before the Augusta National tournament, at which point Power must remain inside the world’s top-50. Or, alternatively, another tournament win would get him that prized invite.
What is already virtually assured is a place in the end-of-season FedEx Cup playoffs. The leading 125 players on that list make it to the Northern Trust, then the top 70 make it to the BMW Championship and finally only the top 30 players earn a ticket to the Tour Championship at East Lake.
"I think I'll have probably my spot in the [FedEx Cup] playoffs locked up after this week. That's a nice one. It's by far the earliest I've ever had it locked up before so it's kind of new territory for me," admitted Power after finishing tied-third alongside Kevin Kisner.
He added: “The goal is to be in East Lake at the end of the year for the Tour Championship, the FedExCup playoffs. That goal doesn’t change after this week. It just kind of just adds a couple points to my total, but [there is] a long ways to go.”
More immediately, Power makes it a third straight week on the road when competing in this week’s American Express championship at La Quinta in California. “I really enjoy playing there. Anyone who has been to Palm Springs in the winter, it’s beautiful. The grass is greener. Normally it’s perfect conditions. La Quinta Country Club to me is the best condition course I think I’ve seen. It’s incredible.”
Graeme McDowell, who missed the cut in Hawaii, is the only other Irish player in the field for the American Express, while Lowry, Rory McIlroy, Jonathan Caldwell and Pádraig Harrington are competing in the Abu Dhabi Championship on the DP World Tour (aka the European Tour), which is a Rolex Series event.