Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 2 August 2014

Harrington: I need a break

Padraig Harrington began this week's Turkish Airlines Open 67th on the Race to Dubai

Padraig Harrington insists it will be no big deal if he fails to qualify for next week's DP World Tour Championship.

The Irishman began this week's Turkish Airlines Open 67th on the Race to Dubai, and in all likelihood needing a top-10 finish to climb into the top 60 to qualify for the European Tour's season-ending showpiece.

A third-round 71, however, left him languishing in a tie for 40th at seven under par and in need of something special from his final round at the Montgomerie Maxx Royal.

Failure to reach Dubai would be the latest disappointment in a 2013 campaign that has seen the three-time major winner slide outside the game's top 100 and fail to qualify for the US PGA Tour's FedEx Cup play-offs.

Asked how big a blow it would be were he to not qualify on Sunday, given his status as a former European number one and major winner, Harrington responded: "Sorry to say not at all.

"It doesn't take anything away form either of those two things you just said. I need the week and I need a break.

"I'm trying to make it and I'd love to be there, but bear in mind anybody who just scrambles in gets an early tee time the first day and it's nearly impossible to come out of the early tee times next week.

"Every hole will play about 30 yards longer than it will in the afternoon - it's a tough task to win from the early tee times next week."

Harrington revealed a loss of patience early on had been responsible for his mediocre third round.

A bogey at the opening hole was followed by another dropped shot at the fifth, although things did pick up slightly after the turn with four birdies and a bogey.

"It's a tough day," he added. "On the greens I didn't hole anything and got off to a bad start.

"If I could get a good start it would be fine, but I'm sure everyone who's not scoring on this course is saying the same thing.

"I definitely lost my patience early on today so that's maybe something - when you're not making birdies out there you feel like you're going backwards.

"I think I need to get to 16 [under par, to qualify for Dubai], but if you offered me 15 now I'd sit in the clubhouse and hope to get lucky."

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