Coetzee chases berths at Augusta, Hoylake

George Coetzee is chasing top-50 qualifying berths for the 2014 Masters and British Open (shown here during the WGC Match Play).

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George Coetzee made forward progress at the WGC-Cadillac Championship – just not enough. He was 58th in the world rankings at the start and with his goal to push inside the top 50 to improve his chances of earning a spot into the Masters, the 27-year-old couldn’t quite overcome a 74-74 start in windy conditions.

Coetzee did return 73-71 on the weekend, but T-14 only earned him enough points to creep into 56th position. To nail down a spot into the Masters, he’d have to be top-50 as of the completion of tournaments April 6, so to further his cause, Coetzee is in Morocco this week at the Trophee Hassan II.

Having ridden a wave of confidence from the previous week at the WGC-Accenture Match Play, where he defeated Steve Stricker and Patrick Reed before losing to eventual champ Jason Day, Coetzee said he still wasn’t putting too much pressure on himself.

“The idea is just to play well and enjoy myself and hopefully post a couple of good rounds because I feel like I'm playing well and my game is coming along nicely,” the South African said. “I don't want to play for other things rather than just play for what I'm here to do this week.”

If the Masters push fails, Coetzee will be disappointed, but not deflated. “The way I'm playing, I feel confident that I'll get my ranking to where I want it to be, especially by the time the British Open comes around, so it's just playing well that week to get a spot.”

He did say that if the Morocco trip doesn’t push him inside the top 50 he would travel to South Africa for a tournament, the Investac Cup, “but those are the only three events I’m thinking about at the moment.”

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