Jason Day and Adam Scott will play in the same pairing when the US PGA Tour's lucrative Tour Championship begins in Atlanta on Thursday.
Day, ranked fourth on the Fedex Cup points table, and Scott (ranked third) have their best chance yet of winning the $US10 million points bonus and the Fedex Cup, a 10-year-old prize that has eluded Australians so far.
Scott won the Tour Championship in 2006, but that was before the Fedex Cup was introduced by the PGA Tour.
The Tour Championship has become potentially the biggest pay week for a golfer, with a winning cheque of $US1.5 million and the potential to win the $10 million bonus as well, as Jordan Spieth did last year.
Day, still the world No. 1 after three wins this year, withdrew from the BMW Championship little more than a week ago and while he is expected to play at East Lake, his status is questionable.
Today, he played down any concerns. "I'm just trying to ease my way back into it, but the back isn't an issue right now,” Day said at his pre-tournament press conference overnight,'' he said at a press conference in Atlanta today. “It just happens. It's like you've got to do the small exercises. It's like brushing your teeth every morning. I just have to do them because it's part of my daily routine now.''
Scott, who has been fourth in three consecutive events, is possibly the better bet of the Aussies, although he has not won since the Cadillac Championship in March.
Both Australians are in the coveted top-five position on the points table that means they are guaranteed to win the Fedex Cup if they win the tournament. However they can still win the bonus pool if they finish close to victory in certain circumstances; for instance, Scott can finish tied-fourth in Atlanta and still win the $10 million if his main rivals struggle, and Day can finish tied-third and win the money.
Players just outside the top five can win the bonus pool, but need a lot of balls to fall in line.
Dustin Johnson and Patrick Reed are in the last pairing of the 30 players teeing it up this week, with Henrik Stenson the only top-ranked player to be missing. They will find an East Lake course where the nines have been reversed for this event.
Day and Scott tee off in round one at 3.50am (AEST) on Friday.
FEDEX CUP STANDINGS
1 Dustin Johnson
2 Patrick Reed
3 Adam Scott
4 Jason Day
5 Paul Casey
6 Rory McIlroy
7 Jordan Spieth
8 Russell Knox
9 Emiliano Grillo
10 Jimmy Walker