Garcia Going Down

Sergio Garcia, world number two just over a year ago, is another player – like Tiger Woods – struggling to find his form. The Spaniard is now ranked 50th in the world standings after a run of poor showings that have left him searching for answers.

That 50th place world ranking may not be the biggest of his problems, however, for Garcia is only 19th in the Ryder Cup rankings, leaving him in danger of not securing a place in the team for the prestigious competition in October.

With team captain Colin Montgomerie holding three wild card entries to the competition Garcia is one of many who will need to display better form at the upcoming Whistling Straits PGA Championship, and may struggle to impress enough.

Having played in every Ryder Cup competition since 1999, when he was a mere 19, Garcia is facing a notable exclusion if he does not give Montgomerie the assurances he needs to ensure he has a competitive squad.

The Whistling Straits tournament is vital not just for Garcia but for struggling Tiger Woods, and also for Phil Mickelson, who stands a good chance of vaulting himself to the top spot. If Mickelson wins at Whistling Straits he will automatically go top in the world standings, but third place will do if Woods finishes outside the top 11.

With a ruptured calf muscle world number three Lee Westwood will not be playing and cannot therefore topple Woods or Mickelson, but number four in the standings – Steve Stricker – holds an outside chance of going top should he win with Mickelson fourth or lower and Woods outside the top 24.

The last major of the season, the US PGA Championship promises to be a nail-biting competition in more ways than one, particularly when it comes to the final Ryder Cup team selections.