LIV Golf player Talor Gooch took a significant step to secure a place in the 2023 Masters after his suspension from the PGA Tour.
Gooch impressively eagled the final hole on the West Course at Wentworth to finish on 15-under-par, just two shots behind elated winner Shane Lowry at the BMW PGA Championship.
With his outright fourth finish in Surrey, Gooch moved from 46th to 35th in the Official Golf World Rankings. This is just four places short of his best-ever ranking which he achieved after the Sony Open in Hawaii in 2022.
The American was one of 18 players from the LIV Golf Tour to play in the BMW PGA Championship. They arrived under intense scrutiny and a number of players didn't want them to play.
Billy Horschel went as far as naming Gooch, Jason Kokrak and Abraham Ancer as players who only played for world ranking points. "Why are you here?" Horschel said in his press conference last Tuesday.
If this was Gooch's motivation to play, he certainly succeeded and he took a significant step toward qualifying for The Masters in 2023 because of his new world ranking, something not many LIV Golf players can boast.
The LIV Golf Tour is currently in pursuit of gaining world ranking points, but a tour must meet certain requirements such as stipulated average field sizes and a graduation tour to the main circuit.
One way to qualify for The Masters in 2023 is to be in the top 50 players in the final Official World Golf Rankings at the end of this calendar year. For a player who no longer has access to world ranking points, Gooch is in a good position.
The 30-year-old was one of three players who were denied a temporary restraining order to play in the FedEx Cup Playoffs. He is also on the list of plaintiffs taking legal action against the PGA Tour.
Gooch didn't have the chance to reach the Tour Championship, despite finishing the regular season in the top 30 of the FedEx Cup standings. This would've confirmed his place at Augusta National in April.