As we enter the second leg of the FedEx Cup playoffs, just the top 100 points earners remain, and that number will be further reduced to 70 following this event. Those currently the wrong side of the cut line include Sergio Garcia, plus the defending FedEx and Deutsche Bank champion Vijay Singh.
All is not lost for these guys though, as Heath Slocum proved spectacularly at the Barclays. Slocum went into last week struggling down in 124th place, needing a very competitive performance to retain any hopes of progressing through this lucrative series. Now, after completely overturning the recent formbook to win at Liberty National, Slocum is up to third and a strong contender to land the $10 million bonus prize for winning the FedEx Cup, or at least one of the ‘consolation’ bonuses. After two false starts, the third renewal of this FedEx Cup series might at last live up to its ‘anyone can win’ hype.
So after four shock Major champions and a 500/1 winner of the opening playoff event, what price another upset at TPC Boston? Events of 2009 have taught us once and for all to never say never in this game, but if the previous history of this tournament is anything to go by, the formbook will stand up. The Deutsche Bank Championship has only been running for six years; five of which produced predictable champions. Moreover, in the three years since this has attracted a field with greater strength in depth, the three winners were TIGER WOODS, PHIL MICKELSON and Vijay Singh.
A useful indicator of a course where the best players are expected to dominate, lies in the winning margin. When fields tend to finish bunched, (like last week), there’s always a strong chance that an outsider will come through. At Boston, however, the only year outsiders even got in a blow over the weekend was in the comparatively weak 2005 renewal. More recently, both Woods in 2006 and Vijay in 2008 finished eight shots ahead of the third placed player.