Ross Fisher’s inclusion in the Turkish Airlines Open 75-man field was strange enough having been given one of four invites despite being well down the list on the Race to Dubai standings.
The other invites were Ryder Cup captain Padraig Harrington, fair enough given what he’s got on his plate for the next 12 months, CT Pan, a PGA Tour member, and Hideto Tanihara, 157th on the money list and someone who must have a very good manager.
But Fisher’s week then very nearly turned into something extraordinary due to some odd circumstances.
As an invitee Fisher could not earn any Race to Dubai points and therefore not qualify for this week’s Nedbank and the season-ender in Dubai.
Good good, why should he knock someone else out when he wasn’t eligible in the first place for Turkey?
But then Andy Sullivan and Mikko Korhonen withdrew which meant that Adrian Otaegui (86) and Renato Paratore (94) were in the field.
The next available reserve, due to others not travelling, was Robert Rock which was very good news for Fisher as the Press Association’s Phil Casey explains: “Under tournament regulations any invited player whose Race to Dubai ranking is above that of the first reserve will be eligible to earn points. Robert Rock was ranked 107th on the money list. Fisher was ranked 105th and therefore eligible for points.”
As it transpired Fisher tied for 10th, picked up a very handy €81,000, thank you Rolex, and moved up 22 spots to 84th on the Race to Dubai. At the start of Sunday he was just three shots behind Matthias Schwab and threatening something very special which might well have stamped his spot in Dubai too.
Fisher’s luck though may have run out as he is still five spots, it was six at the start of Monday, outside this week’s field in South Africa.
Could the golf ball be rolled back for everyone?