RENSLOW: Made cut, did not finish
Of the many differences between golf and other major sports, each week professionals must earn their paycheck.
With few exceptions, the “work week” on Tour begins on Thursday. The first round of a four-day event.
All players are scheduled to play Thursday and Friday, with varied starting times each day. For most events, the top 70 players (out of approximately 120 that start) qualify to play on the weekend and get paid. This is known as making the “cut.”
But, if you have looked at the full results of a PGA Tour event come Monday morning, you may see an interesting classification. This complete list will identify each player’s score for each round played and, if they made money, the amount that was earned.
Near the bottom of those who got paid and/or the top of the area that shows who was cut, there will be three letters – MDF.
What does this mean? I’m glad you asked.
Remember that 70 players who made the cut? That applies to all who are tied at that number. There are times when that number gets to around 80 players for the weekend. This, of course, can become a logistical problem for the golf course and, the ever present factor, television.
So, the MDF goes back to 2008 and is a designation for players who made the Thursday/Friday cut, yet do not play on Sunday due to the size of the field. They “Made the cut, but Did not Finish.” The player is paid, they get their FedEx points, but they do not play on Sunday.
The PGA Tour wants the number playing the weekend to be around 70. Which is the basis for the cut-line. That’s their ideal number of golfers from the Tour’s view. It’s easier to manage crowds on the course, and pace of play and make television coverage better.
John Renslow is a PGA Class A Professional and Instructor at Alta Sierra Country Club. Please contact John with your questions or comments at email@example.com.
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