Paul Broadhurst was in severe danger of becoming the next player to fall out of the Ryder Cup race in Munich today.
Despite covering the first eight holes of his third round at the BMW International Open in one under par, it was not the move Broadhurst needed to re-ignite his challenge for a return to the European team after a gap of 15 years.
The 41-year-old, needing to finish in the top three, had survived the halfway cut with nothing to spare on one under and at two under with 10 holes to play had moved up only from 61st place to 58th.
Back in 1991, the year he won both his games on his cup debut at Kiawah Island, Broadhurst had shot 68-65 to achieve the second place he required at the German Open, the final qualifying event that season.
He probably had to go even lower this weekend to achieve a dream comeback to the side five years after losing his European Tour card and fearing for his future.
He had to go the tour qualifying school twice to re-establish himself, but has won the last two Portuguese Opens and earned approaching €3m since his return to the circuit.
Eight of Ian Woosnam’s side are known now – David Howell, Paul Casey, Luke Donald, Sergio Garcia, Padraig Harrington, Colin Montgomerie and uncapped Swedes Henrik Stenson and Robert Karlsson – and that leaves two automatic spots and two wild cards.
Favourites for the two captain’s picks are Darren Clarke and Lee Westwood, although Thomas Bjorn has to be on the shortlist too if he fails to achieve the win he needs to make the top 10. He was 29th in Germany at halfway.
Next of the cup candidates onto the course was Swede Johan Edfors. He has to finish first or second and a birdie on the short second lifted him from 42nd place to 32nd.
He was still five adrift of overnight leader Martin Erlandsson, but Edfors had to think back only two months to realise it was not a mission impossible.
At the Scottish Open in July he lifted his third title of the year with a closing 63 after beginning the final day six behind.
Broadhurst, Edfors and Bjorn all knew what they needed to do because Jose Maria Olazabal and Paul McGinley were not involved in the weekend action.
Olazabal has controversially taken the week off, while McGinley missed the halfway cut. They were still looking good to make the team, though.