Late bogeys threaten direct entry to US Open for Leishman

MARC Leishman fears three back-nine bogeys could be more costly than missed prizemoney after missing a top-20 result in the US PGA Tour event in Texas yesterday.

Mark Leishman tees off on the third hole during the final round of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas.  He finished in a nine-way tie for 21st, a result which could cost him direct entry into next month’s US Open.

Mark Leishman tees off on the third hole during the final round of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas. He finished in a nine-way tie for 21st, a result which could cost him direct entry into next month’s US Open.

The Warrnambool professional, who started the final round one shot behind four leaders, posted a two-over par 72 to finish five shots behind winner, Queenslander Adam Scott, at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth. Leishman finished at four under in a nine-way tie for 21st after making three bogeys and a birdie in his closing seven holes.

After starting the event at 62 in the official world golf rankings, Leishman had been hoping to push his way inside the top 60 and earn direct entry into next month’s US Open.

But when the updated rankings are released today, Leishman isn’t optimistic of being in the top 60. “I doubt it very much,” he said.

“I believe I would have needed top 10. I’m not a mathematician and I don’t really know how it’s all calculated but I thought I would have needed a better result.

“I’ll wake up in the morning and see what happens.”

Leishman, who is playing in the Memorial tournament later this week, said the event was his last chance at achieving direct entry into the world’s top 60. If he missed the ranking, he would have to try his luck in a one-day, 36-hole play-off.

“The Memorial is still a way in,” he said. “Hopefully I won’t have to qualify. It’s always a long day. It’s 36 holes on two different courses.”

Leishman was pleased that for the second consecutive week he had been in contention to claim his second victory on tour at the start of the final round. “It was a good week, but a disappointing day,” Leishman said.

“It wasn’t what I was after obviously. I got myself in a good position and the more I do that the better I will get at it I guess. It was a disappointing day.”

The 30-year-old is upbeat about his game.

“I’m hitting the ball well, everything is going well. It’s a matter of putting four rounds together. With nine holes to go I was in a pretty good spot. I didn’t get the breaks or hit the shots I wanted to hit or needed to hit. I’ll just put it down to experience.”

Leishman was pleased countryman Scott had kept the Australian flag flying with victory on the third extra hole over American Jason Dufner. “It’s great Scotty had a win,” he said.

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