Tony Finau must hope Tiger Woods picks him for the Presidents Cup

Tony Finau watches his tee shot on the 18th hole during the second round of the BMW Championship golf tournament at Medinah Country Club, Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Medinah, Ill. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Salt Lake City native Tony Finau will have to make the U.S. team for the Presidents Cup the same way he made last year's team for the Ryder Cup, via a captain's pick.

With his fourth-place showing in the BMW Championship near Chicago, Finau finished ninth in the Presidents Cup qualification period that ended Sunday. The top eight American players automatically qualified; Finau ended up just behind Bryson DeChambeau, who remained in the top eight with his tie for 48th place in the FedEx Cup Playoffs event at Medinah Country Club.

Finau was in excellent position after five holes Sunday, but he made three bogeys (offset by six birdies during the round) and fell from second to fourth, losing valuable points in the process.

As the No. 9 player in the standings, having performed well in July and August (highlighted by a third-place finish in the British Open), Finau has a very good chance of becoming one of captain Tiger Woods’ four picks for the Presidents Cup. The Americans will face an International team in Australia in December. His showing as one of the top U.S. players in the 2018 Ryder Cup also will boost his credentials.

Finau starts every season with a goal of playing in a team event, especially after having a taste of the Ryder Cup atmosphere last September in Paris.

“After having that experience, you don’t want to miss any teams,” Finau said during the BMW Championship. “I don’t want to miss the President Cup this year. I don’t want to miss the Ryder Cup next year. And so on and so forth.”

Finau is No. 12 in the FedEx Cup standings, entering the season-ending Tour Championship this week in Atlanta.

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