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Mounting pressure: Plenty for Love to ponder at Wyndham Championship

The US Ryder Cup captain will be keeping a close eye on the field as he decides on his team to take on Europe next month.

Davis Love with USA and LA Clippers' Chris Paul.
Davis Love with USA and LA Clippers' Chris Paul.
Image: Gerry Broome/AP/Press Association Images

FEDEX CUP PLAYOFF and Ryder Cup spots are on the line at the Wyndham Championship which begins at the Sedgefield Country Club course today.

American Ryder Cup captain Davis Love has just a few weeks left to finalise his team while others in the field will be trying to improve their standing in the FedEx Cup playoff points race.

“It is on your mind the whole time,” said Jhonattan Vegas, who is No. 124 on the points list.

The top 125 qualify for The Barclays tournament, the first playoff event.

This is the sixth straight year the Wyndham Championship has served as the final PGA Tour tournament going into the start of the playoffs.

Of the players ranked 120-130 on the list, only South Africa’s Retief Goosen (127) is not teeing it up this week.

“The playoffs really start this week for me,” said American Brendan Steele, who is in 126th spot.

Love will announce his four captain’s picks for the Ryder Cup team on September 4. Bill Haas and Brandt Snedeker are the lone players at the Wyndham who are under serious consideration for the team.

Love played in a pro-am event yesterday with NBA star Chris Paul, who won an Olympic gold medal on Sunday with the USA men’s basketball team.

“We talked about shooting free throws and playing under pressure. Things like that always help,” Love said. “I’ve got to learn how to coach.”

Webb Simpson’s big calendar year began here last August when he earned his first title on the tour, then went on to finish second in the FedEx Cup standings.

Simpson claimed the US Open two months ago and for the first time in his career enters an event hoping to defend a title.

“The pressure of trying to defend, I think it’s always going to be there,” Simpson said.

“I can’t hide from it, but at the same time, I know that the three tournaments I’ve won on tour, I didn’t show up saying, ‘OK, I’m going to win this week or I need to win or I feel pressure to win.’ Wins out here seem to come every so often.”

- © AFP, 2012

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