Woods planning post-season around Ryder Cup

Tiger Woods’ current schedule has been determined on the assumption that he will make the Ryder Cup team as a player – the 14-time major champion might well have been told something by Jim Furyk that no one else knows.

Woods narrowly missed out on automatic qualification for Team USA.

His hopes of competing at Le Golf National next month now hinge on him being one of Furyk’s four wildcards.

Woods finished the regular season in 20th place on the FedExCup standings and has structured his post-season with the Ryder Cup at the forefront of his mind.

“I’m playing the first three right now and that should get me into Atlanta and on the back side is obviously the Ryder Cup,” the former world number one said ahead of The Northern Trust.

“That is a lot of golf, so it’s about pacing myself and making sure I don’t practice too much and making sure my training schedule goes well.

“One of the hardest things this year has been trying to find the right balance and, as the summer has gone on, I’ve got better and felt better, and this is a pretty important stretch.”

Woods is currently on Furyk’s backroom team for the showpiece in France and he insists that dialogue with his skipper has open and forthright and that he has been speaking with his vice-captain’s hat on and not his player’s hat.

“At the very beginning of the year, I told Jim I wanted to be a part of the team, not just as a vice-captain but as a player, and I’m very close to making that happen,” added the 42-year-old.

“The interesting role here is that I’m a vice captain, so we’re talking about myself in the third person a lot. So, that’s one of the more interesting conversations we were having.

“We were having a lot of fun with it, but I’m one of the guys on the shortlist. I want to be picked and I want to be part of the team.

“It’s been a long year and one of my goals was to make that team, because to be part of that team, you’ve got to be one of the 12 best players and I’m kind of trending towards that.”

It seems highly likely that Woods will be confirmed as one of Furyk’s four picks.

The next story is who the other three will be and who will be left behind. Some big names are in the mix. Phil Mickelson, Matt Kuchar, Bryson Dechambeau, Tony Finau and Xander Schauffele are but a few of them.