Eleven players are within just three shots of the lead ahead of the final round of the Children’s Miracles Network Hospitals Classic. Despite being taken to hospital on Friday evening Charlie Beljan still has a two shot lead and he will be looking to maintain that advantage and secure a first PGA Tour win on Sunday afternoon.
Beljan suffered a panic attack on the course during his second round on Friday and was still in hospital six hours before his third round was due to begin. Remarkably the rookie managed to complete his third round and was under par for his 18 holes on Saturday.
If this was a regular tournament in the middle of the season Beljan would have probably withdrawn. However this is the final event of the year and Beijan is 139th on the money list. He has to play his way into the top 125 at the close of play on Sunday to retain his card.
Beljan would rise to 63rd in the rankings if he wins this tournament and that gives him automatic entry to several limited field events next season. The stress of trying to secure his playing future for next year and the birth of his first child became too much for Beljan’s emotions on Friday and that’s when he started to feel unwell.
Vaughan Taylor is in the most precarious position of the leaders in terms of keeping his card for next season. His projected position is 125th which puts him right on the bubble and he has to finish no worse than joint fifth to maintain playing privileges for next season.
Of those players within three shots of the lead Robert Garrigus (pictured) could prove to be Beljan’s main rival. His only career win was in this tournament two years ago. He clearly has a game well suited to the host courses and his skill’s profile is a good fit for this week’s challenge.
The first two rounds were played in rotation on the Palm and Magnolia courses at Disney Resort in Florida. The more difficult Magnolia is used solely over the weekend. Garrigus’s course experience could see him emerge from the pack on Sunday and record a second PGA Tour win.