ZIMBABWE’S leading professional golfer Brendon de Jonge faces a crucial period on the PGA Tour when he starts his campaign in the money-spinning $67 million FedEx Cup Playoffs starting at this week’s Barclays tournament at Ridgewood Country Club in Paramus, New Jersey in the United States.
After the Barclays, the top 100 players qualify for next week’s Deutsche Bank Championship, before the top 75 from that event qualify for the BMW Championship and the top 30 qualify for the playoff-final, The Tour Championship.
It is, however, not only the weekly prize-money, but the stunning bonuses for each player who has made it this far which will make it crucial for De Jonge to do well.
Those teeing it up this week are already assured of a $70 000 bonus and the amounts range upwards to the massive $10 000 000 to the eventual winner of the overall points race.
It took the de Jonge three tries before he qualified for his first FedExCup Playoffs in 2010.
Then, after three years of running into a dead end at the BMW Championship, he reached his first TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola in 2013.
The Harare-born golfer arrives in New Jersey ranked 71st in the FedEx Cup standings and almost guaranteed to progress to the Deutsche Bank Championship.
Although yet to register a win on Tour, consistency has been de Jonge’s biggest advantage as he made 22 of 29 cuts during the regular season, while managing only two top 10s.
De Jonge will part of a group of seven Southern Africans among the 125 PGA Tour players who’ll be slugging it out for $ FedExCup playoffs together with South Africans Tim Clark (ranked 29th), Charl Schwartzel (60), Ernie Els (91), Retief Goosen (96), Rory Sabbatini (97) and Louis Oosthuizen (123).