Padraig Harrington, much to his relief, has two more rounds to try to get his game in shape for the Ryder Cup.
Despite being the only player in the world’s top 80 taking part at the Vivendi Trophy in Paris, Harrington survived the halfway cut with nothing to spare last night – and needed three birdies in his last six holes to do it.
A second-round 74, however, left the Dubliner 11 strokes adrift of joint halfway leaders John Parry and Jarmo Sandelin.
While Harrington looks for a confidence boost before heading to Celtic Manor for next week’s clash with the Americans, Parry and Sandelin are playing for their futures.
They lie 116th and 168th on this season’s European Tour money list and only the leading 115 at the end of the season keep their cards.
Parry, a team-mate of Rory McIlroy at the 2007 Walker Cup, led after 36 holes in Austria last week but slipped back to 20th.
“I think I’ll find out I’ve learnt something from that,” said the Harrogate golfer, who is in his first full year on the circuit. “My putting feels a lot more comfortable this week and I feel I can continue that.”
Sandelin was with Harrington on the 1999 Ryder Cup side, but has already made two trips back to the qualifying school since then.
“I’ve not been playing up to the capacity I know I have and I’m very disappointed with my season, but I’ve changed my nutrition completely,” he said. “I don’t have any sugar. It makes you go up and down and feel very tired.”
Harrington is looking for a big improvement in his putting on his return to the Marly course at Golf de Joyenval.
“I need to practise it and get that ready for next week,” said the three-time major champion, without a Tour win for more than two years and down from third in the world to 22nd in that time.
“I can see that’s the weakest part of my game and that’s where my focus will be. It needs to be tidied up for next week.
“But I like the fact that I played well when I had to. It’s always good when your back is to the wall, you have to perform and you do.”