Ryder Cup 2018: Thorbjorn Olesen leapfrogs Ian Poulter in bid for Europe's last automatic berth

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Thorbjorn Olesen at the Nordea Masters (Getty Images)

Thorbjorn Olesen jumped past Ian Poulter’s in qualifying for Team Europe’s eighth and final automatic berth in next month’s Ryder Cup with two qualifying events remaining.

The Dane shot a final-round 67 Sunday to reach 12 under at the Nordea Masters, securing fourth place and moving past Poulter, noted for being a thorn in Team USA side in past Ryder Cups, in the world points list.

There are just two European Tour events remaining before the qualification period closes — the Czech Masters and the Made in Denmark.

Even if Poulter doesn’t qualify automatically, his Ryder Cup track record makes him a good bet to be a captain’s pick by Europe coach Thomas Bjorn.

Open champion Francesco Molinari, Justin Rose, Tyrrell Hatton and Tommy Fleetwood occupy the top four places on the European points list, with Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Alex Noren and now Olesen set to qualify from the world list as it stands.

On the PGA Tour, Brandt Snedeker did his hopes the world of good by securing a wire-to-wire success at the Wyndham Championship — a triumph that began with a stunning opening round of 59.

Team USA’s eight automatic choices are already decided for the trip to Le Golf National in late September, but Jim Furyk still has four captain’s picks to make and Snedeker’s sensational effort at Sedgefield Country Club has certainly pushed him into the conversation.

Bryson DeChambeau, Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Xander Schauffele occupy ninth to 12th in the rankings, but Furyk has the license to prioritise form over points.

The confirmed players for Furyk’s team are U.S. Open and PGA champion Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Webb Simpson.

European points list (top four earn places)

1. Francesco Molinari: 6,182,450.35
2. Justin Rose: 4,518,651.42
3. Tyrrell Hatton: 4,326,297.77
4. Tommy Fleetwood: 3,668,310.57

5. Jon Rahm: 3,617,769.82
6. Thorbjorn Olesen: 3,609,983.32
7. Rory McIlroy: 3,482,791.06
8. Alex Noren: 3,444,442.21

World points list (top four not already qualified via European points list earn places)

1. Francesco Molinari: 373.12
2. Justin Rose: 366.69 
3. JON RAHM: 327.18
4. RORY MCILROY: 309.29
5. Tommy Fleetwood: 301.66
6. ALEX NOREN: 252.62
7. Tyrrell Hatton: 245.64
8. THORBJORN OLESEN: 177.01

9. Rafa Cabrera Bello: 168.75
10. Ian Poulter 168.19
11. Paul Casey: 167.05
12. Matt Fitzpatrick: 152.93

Next up

European Tour: Czech Masters, Albatross Golf Resort, Prague
PGA Tour: The Northern Trust, Ridgewood Country Club Paramus, N.J.