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Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Steve Stricker to play final event

By Bob Harig
ESPN.com

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Steve Stricker will put a hunting trip on hold in order to play for $10 million.

While that seems like a relatively easy call, the veteran PGA Tour player had reduced his schedule this year to the point that he planned to skip next week's Tour Championship in Atlanta.

But he's changed his mind after a second-place finish at the Deutsche Bank Championship elevated him to eighth in the FedEx Cup standings heading into this week's BMW Championship at Conway Farms.

"Even though I'd rather go hunting, I think it's pretty important, being in the position I am in,'' Stricker said Wednesday. "I still have the opportunity and the chance to win, which I didn't think I'd be in this position starting the year with the limited playing schedule.''

Stricker, 46 and a 12-time winner on the PGA Tour, has hardly seen a drop-off; he's 10th in the world rankings after playing just 12 times this year. He has six top-10 finishes, including three seconds, and has earned more than $3.4 million.

"There were a lot of things that went into my decision,'' Stricker said. "It's our marquee event. It's the Super Bowl of our year. And for me to walk away from that, I think, would have been foolish.

"Another underlying factor I kept thinking about is it's a 30-man field. And if I don't come, there's one guy that's going to be going out in a single every day and, under his breath, he was probably going to be cussing me. I didn't think that would be fair to the field or the other players."

Stricker finished second in the 2007 FedEx Cup standings, which meant a $3 million bonus, and he was third in 2009, which brought a $2 million bonus. He has just one top-10 finish at the Tour Championship in the past six years.