Was a top-20 player by the time of his fourth PGA Tour victory in 2015, but although he had finished joint 19th on his Open Championship debut the previous season – still his best placing in a major - he has been back only once since then and had to wait until June 30 for his spot this time as one of the leading non-exempt players on the world rankings.
Kirk played alongside Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler, Webb Simpson and Billy Horschel at the 2007 Walker Cup in Northern Ireland, with Rory McIlroy and Danny Willett on the Britain and Ireland team.
Eight years later he was part of the American Presidents Cup side in South Korea and by then had won the 2011 Viking Classic, 2013 McGladrey Classic, 2014 Deutsche Bank Championship and 2015 Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial. In the last three of those he closed with rounds of 66.
Kirk finished second in the 2014 FedEx Cup play-off series behind Horschel and just ahead of McIlroy.
He first made a global impact at the 2006 Eisenhower Trophy World Amateur Team Championship in South Africa, where he finished joint-second leading individual behind Wil Besseling of the Netherlands.