Apr 17th, 2017
Ian Poulter on the edge
Of losing his PGA Tour card
Words: John Dean Photography: Getty Images
Ian Poulter admitted being "hot under the collar" after struggling with his putter on the final day of the RBC Heritage. He's not lost his Tour card yet, as he has one last chance at the Valero Texas Open.
Poulter was just three shots off the lead overnight and looked in pole position to win the $145,000 he needs to secure his PGA Tour card for the rest of the season.
He got off to a great start with a birdie at the first, but it was all down hill from there.
He had a nightmare with the Harbour Town greens, and could only finish his tournament with on one–over–par 73.
He three–putted twice and failed to make a number of birdie opportunities.
Pulter dropped shots at the third, seventh and eighth to make the turn in 38. He then bogeyed the 14th before a birdie at the 15th gave him renewed hope of a top–10 finish.
Poulter then had to scramble for a par at 16 before missing a makeable birdie opportunity from inside 10 feet at the 17th.
A par at the 18th left him in a tie for 11th on eight under, and five strokes behind champion Wesley Bryan.
Poulter now has one last event – this week's Valero Texas Open –to save his PGA Tour card. and he will need to earn just over $30,000 at the event.
"I'm a little hot under the collar right now," he told Nick Dougherty at the Sky Cart. "I'm not disappointed I didn't get the job done today in terms of finishing where I need to finish, but that could have been a victory and I let it slip.
"Three putts from 25 feet is unacceptable, and another three–putt on the seventh. I had chances on the two par–fives from eight feet and didn't convert those. So that's four shots, all of a sudden that's 12 under par. And then there's the putts in the closing stretch.
"I could have got it done today and I should have got it done. Three-putting is unacceptable, especially from the distances I was. I pride myself on being a good putter, but the flat stick didn't do what it needed to do.
"I didn't close out any of the putts that I expected to close out, and I subsequently ended up shooting 73," added Poulter.
There's a handsome $6.2 million purse on offer at the Valero, with the winner taking home $1,116,000, so still there's everything to play for.
By our calculations, he will need a Top 30 finish to get over the line and bag the $30,000 he needs to keep his card.