After 36 holes at The Tour Championship, the names at the top of the leaderboard consist of Billy Horschel, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Chris Kirk, all golfers under 30. It was a great day for low scores given the rains last night which softened the course significantly. Billy Horschel shot a second straight 66 to take a two-shot lead over McIlroy, Day and Kirk.
After my third straight day at East Lake I began to notice certain things. For one, players just look beat down after playing for at least four weeks in a row and you can really see the fatigue under pressure situations. Today tee times were moved up due to impending thunderstorms this afternoon which will give players all afternoon and the next morning off to rest. It is going to be a tough weekend with more rain in the forecast both Saturday and Sunday. These young golfers will certainly be tested both mentally and physically if the conditions get wet. I would expect most of the field to drop off tomorrow and this tournament to be a duel between maybe five or six players come the back nine tomorrow afternoon.
As I mentioned in a previous article, the new generation of golfers is making their presence known. In his press conference, Rory McIlroy stated that Phil and Tiger were approaching the “last few holes of their career”. A statement he has caught a lot of heat for, but a true statement nonetheless. The way I see it is this season has been a changing of the guard on the PGA Tour. Out with the old and injured, in with the new and improved. But as I said earlier, this weekend we will see just how young and energetic these twenty-somethings really are after 40 or so straight days of golf (tough life right?!).
Tomorrow will definitely be a hard fought battle between these four guys and expect to see some great golf, especially from the final pairing of Billy Horschel and Rory McIlroy (2:30). This is the marquee and I will most likely bounce between them and the Chris Kirk/Jason Day pairing as well.
Let’s just hope the rain holds off this weekend and we get a great finale to another great season on the PGA Tour!
Cover Photo: Getty Images