Padraig Harrington was only five years ago one of the best golfers in the world. This Irishman was a dominant player on both the PGA tour and the European tour. He was ranked in the top 10 in the world and he never had to worry about what his schedule would be for the next year. Unfortunately for Padraig those days are gone and he must take time this winter to decide whether to play a reduced schedule in Europe or the PGA. His results over the past three years have resulted in his world ranking plummeting below the top 50 and as such to be able to keep both his PGA and European memberships he must play in 13 Euro tour events and 15 PGA tour events before September.
Harrington’s 2013 year was still lucrative as he earned over $700,000 on the PGA tour and also had a successful season on the European tour even though he participated in a limited number of events. However, Padraig’s play the past three years has not been consistent and now he is in a position where over the course of 36 weeks starting from the second week of January 2014 until September 2014 he needs to play 28 tournaments and accumulate enough points so he can qualify for both tours. This schedule would be challenging for a young man but Padraig is now 42 years old.
Padraig has made a great living as a golfer and it is apparent that he has no intention of retiring or playing on the senior tour. However, he might need to take a step back and use the upcoming season to play in fewer events but achieve better results or he could lose out on both tours.
Age is the great equalizer for people in all professions and the world of professional sports is no different. Padraig Harrington must ask himself over the holidays whether it is time to accept playing a reduced schedule and focus on either playing the PGA tour or the European tour and attempt to get better results. The past three years he has attempted to play the same extensive schedule that he played in his earlier years and the result has been multiple performances where he missed the cut which is something that rarely occurred when he playing his best golf. Sometimes, less is better, and for Padraig Harrington’s upcoming 2014 season this seems to represent the best decision.