Ian Poulter
45-Year-Old Golfer
2021–22 Fantasy Outlook
Poulter was still able to show form despite being 45 years of age. He made 17-of-21 cuts and logged seven top-25s. Poulter's ball-striking was down, but he still ranked top-10 in SG: around, SG: putting and scrambling. He likely will be further down on events played, but Poulter should still contend from time-to-time in 2021-22. Read Past Outlooks
Only two birdies Sunday
August 8, 2021
Poulter carded a two-over 72 on Sunday at the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational to finish in a share of 10th place.
Poulter entered the final round tied for fifth and in striking distance of the lead, but he was only able to card two birdies Sunday and also had a pair of double bogeys. His short-game helped keep him in contention throughout the week, as he ranked in the top-10 in strokes-gained around-the-green and putting. Poulter has now recorded three PGA Tour top-10s this season.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
Poulter statistically had a very solid season last year, ranking top-40 in SG: Total and scoring average. His ball striking was just well down, which led to him needing a great year with the putter to be able to get the finishes he did. Poulter still only ended up with one top-10, but he also only missed one cut.
Most golfers start to slow down when they near the age of 40, but Poulter has actually played some of his best golf since turning 40 about three years ago. In that time, Poulter has posted three consecutive seasons of $2 million or more in earnings and his lowest finish on the FedEx list was 60th. That's the good news, the bad news is, he's turning 44 this season and he has to slow down at some point. Even if he can put off the inevitable drop in production, he'll have a tough time doing much better than what he did this past season.
Poulter is a great player when motivated as he's proved time and time again. Two seasons ago he was motivated to keep his playing privileges and it resulted in a $2 million season. Last season, he was motivated by the Ryder Cup at the end of the season and it resulted in a win and over $2.7 million in earnings. This season however, there's just nothing to keep his attention. There's no Ryder Cup at the end of the season and his card is secure for the next two seasons. Even with the lack of motivation, his number is simply too high for salary cap consideration this season.
Poulter nearly lost his playing privileges midway through last season, but a surprise reprieve made all the difference in the world as Poulter went from outside the top-125 to fighting for a spot in the Tour Championship. He didn't get that spot of course, but he did play himself well within the top-125. By the end of the season, Poulter had posted his best numbers on the PGA Tour since 2010. With that in mind, he's not a good salary cap option this season because he played about as well as possible last season.
Poulter is recoving from a foot injury and upon his return, he'll be under a major medical extension with 10 events to earn 218.420 points or $347,634, well within reach. He said in June he'd miss four months. That would mean an October return and he said at the Ryder Cup, where he was a vice captain, that he hoped to play the British Masters in October and, if not, then a week later in Malaysia.
Though his personality is anything but stable, Ian Poulter's golf game is very reliable -- at least his numbers at the end of the season are very reliable. Not exactly the type of guy you want to grab in a salary cap league, Poulter is a perfect guy for draft leagues as his added value during majors and WGC events makes him a great middle-round selection. The only way he's ever going to significantly improve on his earnings number is with a major victory and while it's possible, it's never probable. As such, he's not worth the risk in salary cap leagues, but his draft stock is higher than his spot on the money list, so look for Poulter to go around round six.
Poulter is one of the bigger names that you'll find down near number 50 on the money list and although he seems to come up big every now and then, his upside appears to be limited. You can always count on Poulter making a run at a big event, but more times than not he comes up short, which makes him quite the frustrating fantasy player. Look for more of the same this season with a run at a major and maybe a WGC event, but little outside of that.
Poulter seems to be perpetually on the verge of greatness, yet he's never quite made it to the mountain top. He's certainly had his moments and is generally someone you can count on to show up during the majors, but is he ever going to reach the level of his fellow European stars like Lee Westwood or Luke Donald? Probably not. but that doesn't mean that he can't put up some big numbers along the way. Poulter's in a tricky spot entering the season. He's certainly capable of crushing the earnings he posted last year, but more likely he'll only slightly improve. In draft leagues, he should go in the fifth round.
Poulter had a break out campaign in 2010 when he won the WGC Match-play event, but he failed to follow that season with anything of note last year. Among the lowlights last year were missed cuts at both the U.S. and British Opens. Perhaps expectations got to Poulter last season, it seems the only reasonable explanation. Poulter is likely to bounce back this season.
To those who follow the PGA TOUR, Ian Poulter's win at the WGC Accenture Match-Play event came as no surprise. The subsequent fall in play was, however. After his enormous victory in February, Poulter struggled to find his top form. A top-10 at the Masters in April was his only such finish for the rest of 2010. Still, there's little to worry about concerning Poulter, his drop in play was most likely a hangover from his February win, and though that was unexpected, it's not going to carry over to this season. As expected, with only a couple quality starts under his belt last year, his stats did not look so hot. When he's playing well, though, it's usually a solid putter leading the way.
A runner-up finish at The Players Championship is the main reason for his place on the money list, but Poulter accomplished more than that last season. In all, five top-10s in 2009 for Poulter in 17 PGA TOUR events. Poulter is still on his way up, so an increase in his numbers from last year is not only possible, it's expected. Poulter, who finished 2008 ranked at 26th, moved up to 12th in the final 2009 Official World Golf Rankings.
Outside of a strong finish at the British Open, 2008 was a disappointment for Poulter. His low end is about where he ended up last year. He'll be better in 2009 and match his 2008 at minimum. Poulter finished 26th in the 2008 final Official World Golf Rankings.
Consistency is the name of the game with Poulter. Over the last two season he's missed only six cuts. What he's done after making the cut though leaves a little to be desired. The biggest issue when considering Poulter is the amount of events he plays. He's not Tiger Woods, he's not Ernie Els, if he chooses to play less than 20 events again this year, it will be difficult for him to improve on his numbers from last season.
Poulter could be the next golfer from Europe to break through on the PGA Tour. He only played 15 events in 2006 yet he earned more than $1.5 million. That's more than $100K every time he tees it up. His best finish came at the American Express Championship where he finished runner-up. He also played well at the U.S. Open and the PGA Championship, which bodes well for his future, and his world ranking should get him into the Masters in 2007. Poulter is a solid pick if he plays 15 events in 2007, if he plays more, he becomes a great pick.
Poulter plays on the European Tour, but could play around ten events in the U.S. this year after buying a home in Florida. He's been ranked at times in the top 50 in the world, so he could make an impact.
More Fantasy News
Shoots round of the day
July 11, 2021
Poulter fired an eight-under 63 on Sunday at the abrdn Scottish Open to jump into a tie for fourth place.
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Battles on Sunday to a T3
May 30, 2021
Poulter carded a two-under 68 in the final round of the Charles Schwab Challenge to take home a tie for third place.
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Loses in Round of 16
March 28, 2021
Poulter was defeated 5 & 4 by Scottie Scheffler in the Round of 16 of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play on Saturday.
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Headed to Augusta
November 9, 2020
Poulter (undisclosed) is listed in the field for the Masters this week.
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Withdraws from Houston Open
November 1, 2020
Poulter withdrew from the upcoming Houston Open for an undisclosed reason, Ron Mintz of MyGolfDaily.com reports.
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