Harrington looking for improvement as he joins Clarke at Mitsubishi Electric Classic

Ronan MacNamara
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Harrington looking for improvement as he joins Clarke at Mitsubishi Electric Classic

Padraig Harrington (Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images)

Pádraig Harrington and Darren Clarke are in PGA Tour Champions action this week at the Mitsubishi Electric Classic as the over-50s travel to the difficult TPC Sugarloaf outside Atalanta.

Harrington and Clarke are part of the 78-man field with a $1.8 million purse up for grabs.

Both players arrive with just one top-10 between them, a T-2nd result for Harrington at the Rapiscan Systems Classic, the best result from his three starts.

The three-time major champion finished fourteen shots off the pace and is hoping some improved iron play can see him threaten the upper echelons of the leaderboard this weekend.

“Obviously wasn’t good enough,” said Harrington summing up last week’s performance on Twitter. “Game was OK, everything was OK except for my iron play, drove it quite well, putted OK, few loose chips early in the week but that got better.

“My iron play was poor, I bailed out a lot, played safe a lot, didn’t have much confidence in it. A lot of times I was trying to hit my fade and hit a pull draw which meant I kept worrying about danger on the left. If there was water on the left I bailed out right.

“That was the one thing to work on going forward. I was a long way behind eighteen-under but tidy up that iron play and I will have a lot more chances in the coming weeks.”

It has been a similarly slow start for Clarke this season, with two top-25 finishes all he has mustered from his first six starts.

The 2011 Open champion’s best result this term was a T-14 on his defence of the Mitsubishi Electric Championship in Hawaii and most recently he finished 30th in the ClubCorp Classic.

The 2016 Ryder Cup captain has been underwhelming with all facets of his game particularly off the tee where he ranks 58th in driving accuracy.

Harrington and Clarke aren’t under too much pressure to make the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup with both players ranked comfortably inside the top-72 at 29th and 45th respectively.

Harrington is in the opening group with 2009 PGA Champion Y.E Yang and American Olin Browne while Clarke gets his week underway alongside Dicky Pride and two-time US Open champion Retief Goosen.

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