Editor's note: Ernie Els is writing a blog for PGATOUR.COM in 2013 and this is his latest installment. For more information on the World Golf Hall of Famer, visit www.ernieels.com.
I like the golf course at Liberty National and always enjoy staying in New York. More importantly, I was also feeling pretty good after a final round 65 in the Wyndham Championship, so it’s hard to explain shooting 5-over par and missing the cut in The Barclays. My game was a bit off, but still I should have scored better than I did. It was a frustrating couple of days, to be honest.
It could have been worse, though. When I finished my second round I was projected to fall to 102nd in the FedExCup points’ list and with only the top 100 moving on to this week’s Deutsche Bank Championship, that would have been ‘season over’ for me. However, by the time the rain-delayed second round had concluded on Saturday morning, my ranking had improved to 91st. I’m not making it easy for myself, but at least I’m in. No more second chances, though. I need to perform this week.
By now you probably know the format for the FedExCup Playoffs. Only the top 70 players from this week’s Deutsche Bank Championship will make it through to the BMW Championship. The thing is, with one good result you can really turn things around very quickly, so that’s obviously my goal this week. At the very least, the absolute bare minimum, I’m probably going to need a top-25 finish in order to progress to the BMW Championship.
So this week we’re back at TPC Boston, which is a lovely venue. This Arnold Palmer-designed golf course is only around 12 years old, but you wouldn’t know it. The course has a mature, almost traditional feel about it and it’s in a beautiful setting in the lovely New England landscape. It’s a decent mix of holes, too.
In recent years I’ve not done much here, but in 2008 I started 66-65 and ended up finishing tied-third at 14-under par. I could really use that kind of form again this week. This FedExCup Playoffs series creates a strange kind of pressure, very different to trying to win a golf tournament, and it certainly focuses the mind. You want to stay the distance and be one of the 70 players who tees it up in the BMW Championship and then one of the 30 who plays in the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.
First things first, though! Let’s see how we go here in Boston.