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Kevin Chappell played his way on to the U.S. Presidents Cup team and responded perfectly

September 04, 2017

Steve Dykes

Kevin Chappell had done all he could on Monday in his last-ditch effort to qualify for the Presidents Cup. An even-par 71, with a bogey-6 on the final hole, during the final round at TPC Boston left him in a tie for for 35th in the Dell Technologies Championship. It dropped the 31-year-old roughly five spots down the leader board from the start of the round, but the question was whether it had cost him enough points to keep him from leaping from 11th to 10th on the qualifying list and grabbing the last of the 10 automatic spot on the squad.

Winner at the Valero Texas Open in May, Chappell decided there was no need to stick around to find out; he’d learn the answer soon enough. So it was that he was heading to the airport when PGA Tour officials reached him to let him know the good news, that he had squeaked inside the bubble by .23 points and will be playing for the American side at Liberty National later this month.

Chappell’s social-media response to hearing the news was pitch perfect.

Chappell’s good fortune proved Charley Hoffman’s undoing, as he fell from 10th to 11th after finishing T-47 at TPC Boston. He’ll now have to rely on the kindness of U.S. captain Steve Stricker using one of his two wildcard picks on him when he rounds out the 12-man lineup on Wednesday night. Working in Hoffman’s favor is the fact he has had two runner-up finishes and seven top-10 performances in 2017, seemingly finding himself in the hunt every week this summer despite not actually winning a title.

If Hoffman seems an obvious choice, the question of Stricker’s other pick isn’t quite so clear. Or maybe it is. Brian Harman, winner of the Wells Fargo Championship this summer, runner-up at the U.S. Open and 12th on the final points list is certainly in the running. But the sentimental choice is Phil Mickelson, who is moved up from 18th to 15th in the points list with his T-6 finish at TPC Boston, his best stroke-play finish of the 2016-’17 season.

As for the International team, no one moved inside the top 10 at the Dell Technologies Championship, although Argentina's Emiliano Grillo tried to make it interesting. Grillo needed a top-12 finish at TPC Boston to make the leap from his No. 12 spot into the top 10 on the International team points list. Impressively, he managed to shoot a closing 66, which moved him from 32nd to 22nd but allowed Adam Hadwin to keep the 10th and final spot. Grillo's finish, however, moved him inside the top 70 in the FedEx Cup points list, securing him a spot in the field at the BMW Championship in two weeks.

U.S. Presidents Cup Team Final Standings
Dustin Johnson
Jordan Spieth
Justin Thomas
Rickie Fowler
Daniel Berger
Brooks Koepka
Kevin Kisner
Patrick Reed
Matt Kuchar
Kevin Chappell

International Presidents Cup Team Final Standings
Hideki Matsuyama
Jason Day
Adam Scott
Louis Oosthuizen
Charl Schwartzel
Marc Leishman
Branden Grace
Jhonattan Vegas
Si Woo Kim
Adam Hadwin