A mix of outsiders and elite stars fighting up front going into the final two rounds this weekend at the 2022 US Open Golf

We have now seen a shift in momentum going into the final two rounds this weekend when a couple of Day 1 front-runners dropped further afield, while some players redeemed themselves in a bid to stay ahead & have a shot towards that US Open major championship. It’s the current British Open winner Collin Morikawa sharing top-spot with Joel Dahmen who is currently ranked No.130 at age 34.

Meanwhile, World No.259 Hayden Buckley has improved a couple of places to Tied 3rd at -4 following a great result today of two under par 68 – alongside reigning US Open winner Jon Rahm, Rory McIIroy, Aaron Wise & Beau Hossler. They all trail by only one stroke right now to the joint leaders (Morikawa & Dahmen) at 136.

It’s good to see World No.166 Matthew NeSmith keep his Tied 8th position at -3, even though he was a bit off the pace today at one under par 69. We also saw a couple of new unknowns flying into the shared Tied 8th spot from the Top 14-15 – with World No. 216 Patrick Rodgers & World No.317 Nathan Hardy both came off a brilliant spell in Round 2 today at two under par 69.

However, the Top 3 players from the opening round yesterday – including Day 1 leader & World No.50 Canadian Adam Hadwin; World No.445 Callum Tarren from England; World No.592 Swede David Lingmerth – struggled to build on their brilliant starts down in between 13th and 16th, although there’s still time to bounce back having all came off today at two over par 72.

So there you have it, we have a mix of elite competitors and outsiders battling up front on what it should be a fantastic final two rounds of this year’s US Open Golf this weekend at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Looking at our Aussies right now, it may be far from promising down in Tied 31st when it comes to Marc Leishman – who scored one over par 70 in Round 2 today – but it’s still possible for him to climb up through the leaderboard. Then we go further down with Adam Scott’s red-hot start just couldn’t keep up the momentum when he went from 14th to joint 40th alongside Todd Sinnott.

Although Min Woo Lee survived the cut in 55th – including a brilliant eagle he executed on the 8th hole at Par 5; We won’t see Cameron Smith, Lucas Herbert & Jed Morgan continue playing this weekend after their continuous sub-par scores over the past two days saw them all miss the cut.

Scottie Scheffler holds on to Masters lead to secure his first Major championship

Scottie Scheffler holds on to Masters lead to secure his first Major championship

Scottie Scheffler showed ice cold consistency on the final day of The Masters to win his first green jacket – proving just why he’s world No.1.

The American started the day on 10- under, three shots ahead of Australia’s Cameron Smith. It was the Queenslander who got off to a promising start with a pair of birdies on the first two holes. But after sinking a spectacular chip on the third, Scheffler never really looked back.

There was a hint of a rally when Smith birdied the 11th. But a score of six on the par three 12th effectively ended his chances. In the end he was overtaken by Rory McIlroy, himself chasing a Grand Slam of Major victories. The Northern Irishman hit an astonishing round of 64, his magical bunker shot on the 18th one of the day’s highlights.

The day, though, belonged to Scheffler, whose final round of 71 – including four birdies – was pure class.

Smith finished third on 5- under, tied with Ireland’s Shane Lowry. America’s Colin Morikawa finished fourth on 4- under.

Elsewhere, Australia’s Min Woo Lee ended the weekend 14th; Marc Leishman finished 31; Cameron Davis 46th. Adam Scott, the 2013 Masters champion, tied 48th.

Tiger Woods, who dominated so many of this week’s headlines, finished on 13- over. Not quite the fairytale comeback fans hoped for, but the fact the five-time champion completed 72 holes was remarkable; just 14 months ago he underwent extensive emergency surgery to save his right leg following a car accident.

Masters 2022 Preview

Although the golf season has been in full swing for months, for many fans, the Masters is the official start of the golf season. After all, it is the first major championship in the calendar year and a “tradition like no other.” One cannot think of the Masters without fondly recalling 1986 when Jack Nicklaus stormed from behind on the back nine on the final day to win his 6th Masters at the age of 46. Similarly, people vividly remember Tiger Woods’ first triumph in 1997 and his unexpected win in 2019.

Last year, Justin Rose jumped to the early lead in the Masters with an opening round of 65. However, he failed to break par in any of the next three rounds and finished 7th. A third round of 65 by Hideki Matsuyama put him in great position and despite a final round of 73, walked away with his first major and first Japanese-born player to win the Masters. Will Zalatoris finished a shot back at nine-under par.

Taking a look at this year’s field and there are numerous big names are set to tee it up, including the likes of past champions Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Adam Scott. There is even a remote chance that Woods himself tees it up.

Oddly enough, Matsuyama is a longshot to defend at 28-to-1 odds and Zalatoris is at 35-to-1, so expect a different top end of the leaderboard this time around.

One of the hottest players on the PGA Tour and one to watch is Cameron Smith, who has two wins this season and is ranked sixth in the world. Despite being arguably the hottest player currently on the PGA Tour, Smith’s odds of winning at 16-1 are behind Jon Rahm (9-1), Jordan Spieth, Collin Morikawa, and Justin Thomas (12-1), and Rory McIlroy at 14-1. For McIlroy, a win would complete the much-coveted grand slam. However, the Masters has been a very difficult challenge for the 32-year-old, who has finished outside the top 20 in two of his last three starts at Augusta, including a missed cut last year.

Don’t be surprised if 24-year-old Viktor Hovland makes a run at the championship. He has a win and four top-ten finishes on the PGA Tour this season. Ranked 4th in the Official World Golf Ranking, Hovland has been in the top ten in three of his last five starts.

Other players who could seriously contend for the Masters title this year include Brooks Koepka, Scottie Sheffler, Patrick Cantlay, Xander Schauffele, and Bryson DeChambeau.

The Augusta National course the players will face is different from past years. Changes to the first hole of “amen corner” at number 11 and the 15th will add 35 yards to the course, increasing the distance to a record 7510 yards. The dogleg on the 11th hole is slightly diminished and some trees were removed from the right side of the fairway.

In addition, there are new greens on the 3rd, 13th, and 17th holes. The 11th hole has a wider fairway giving players a nice chance of reaching the green even on balls missed to the right. Despite that fact, the trouble around the green is increased, so an already difficult hole could play even tougher this year. The dogleg left on the 13th hole that gives the big bombers a chance to cut the corner, we expected to change but has remained intact. However, a change to the length of this hole is likely to occur for future Masters tournaments.

In the end, the only real changes this year’s players must be concerned about are those to the three greens mentioned and to the 11th and 15th holes. Augusta National is difficult enough without any major changes.

It’s time to sit back and enjoy perhaps first major championship of the PGA season!

Team USA well ahead of Team Europe after Day 1 at 6-2 in the 43rd Ryder Cup Golf

As the first day of the 43rd edition in the postponed 2020 Ryder Cup comes to a close at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisconsin, Team USA is well ahead 6-2 which is the first since 1979 at 6-1 & largest by any team since 2004 (Team Europe 6-1 at the time) with 14 1/2 points needed to reclaim the title since 2016.

They might have endured a first game loss at the beginning but Team USA fired on all cylinders ever since when they dominated the rest of AM followed by an undefeated afternoon session 2-0, it’ll be interesting to see if this blistering form will carry onto Day 2 Saturday.

Meanwhile, Team Europe fired off well in the 1st foursomes battle earlier this morning thanks to the teamwork of Jon Rahm & Sergio Garcia at 3-1, but they were just unable to kick on except when they picked up just two drawn games at 1/2 point each in the afternoon four-ball.

Europe has plenty of catching up if they want to shave off the lead from Team USA set after Day 1 at 6-2 & stay in contention going into the 3rd & final day Sunday.

#RyderCup #Golf #WhistlingStraits #TeamEurope #TeamUSA #43rdRyderCup #RyderCup2021

2021 British Open Golf Review

Over the course of this past weekend yet another beautiful major championship was played in the world of golf. This time it was taken overseas, with the British Open wrapping up just yesterday. As with all tournaments there are many highs and lows throughout that make the tournament special year after year. Today we will be discussing those highs and lows as well as the winner, and what lies ahead after the British Open. Enjoy!

Starting with the lows, it wouldn’t be fair to talk about a golf event without saying the name, Bryson DeChambeau. As always he was grabbing a lot of people’s attention going into the tournament, discussing how this is the first time taking his strategy to links golf. Well it unfortunately ended in a low this week when he shot a score of one over par on the first day. This will not seem like a big deal to most, but it was his comment about his driver after hitting four fairways that day that grabbed everyone’s attention. In a post round interview, DeChambeau simply said “the driver sucks” and his sponsor, Cobra, did not take this lightly. Expect to see more lows from DeChambeau in the future.

As for a high, not counting the winner, Louis Oosthuizen played lights out during all but the final day of the tournament. Setting a low bar on the very first day and walking out with a lead had all eyes on him going into the weekend. Although he finished Sunday with a score of one over par earning himself a spot tied for third, he nearly holed out for an ace from 243 yards. Thisshot could have definitely swung the tournament in his favor, but it was short but what looked like a few inches. Either way this birdie was too little too late for Oosthuizen.

Time to talk about the winner, Collin Morikawa! With this major victory he is one of the youngest players in the history of the Tour to have multiple major victories. This win over the weekend has put his name in with the likes of Tiger Woods! Besides Morikawa, Jordan Spieth came in a close second finishing two strokes behind the victor. Although Spieth didn’t win, it goes to show his potential for a comeback in his career, if winning the Valero Texas Open wasn’t enough. This has Spieth fans, including myself, excited to see where his career goes from here.

Looking forward, we have the upcoming Tokyo Olympics which actually has a lot of golfers excited! Players like Tommy Fleetwood, amongst others, are proud to be representing their country on the largest scale possible. They could win many other tournaments, but not many golfers will be able to say that they have won an Olympic gold medal for the sport. Besides the Olympics, the PGA Tour playoffs are coming up soon as players rally towards the Fedex Cup. Although the majors are done for the year, there is still a lot of good golf left to be played.

PGA Golf News: Jon Rahm still able to compete in the 2021 US Open having gone into quarantine after positive COVID test

Jon Rahm, the third ranked player in the world, was on cruise control last weekend at the Memorial Tournament, building a six-shot lead at the end of Saturday’s third round. In the blink of the eye, Rahm’s hard work over the first 54 holes went for nothing, as he was forced to withdraw after testing positive for COVID-19.

Live television captured Rahm’s obvious disappointment, but noted it is one of those things that happens in life. Rahm was in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and Rahm tested negative every day of the tournament except for Friday’s test. Having to withdraw from the event cost Rahm potentially the $1.67 million winner’s check.

The PGA Tour called the situation “incredibly unfortunate”, but the Memorial Tournament continued with several players in the mix for the championship, including Scottie Scheffler, Collin Morikawa, and Patrick Cantlay.

After a tie at the top at 13-under par between Morikawa and Cantlay, the two headed to the 18th hole for sudden-death playoff. After Morikawa failed to hit the green, Cantlay’s par save earned him his second Memorial victory. Scheffler was two shots back, finishing in sole possession of third.

With the win, Cantlay earned a robust 550 FedEx Cup points and a hefty 68 points in the World Golf Rankings, vaulting him from 15thto 7th. Morikawa moved from 7th to 4th and Scheffler moved from 24th to 17th. Rahm remains in 3rd.

Rahm immediately began his CDC guideline isolation of 10 days, which ends June 15.  Despite the positive COVID-19 test, Rahm should be ready to tee off in the first round of the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, which runs June 17-20.   In addition, the positive test result didn’t change Rahm’s odds to win the title, remaining among the top contenders. 

The 26-year-old Rahm has 12 professional wins, including five on the PGA Tour. His best finish in a major is 3rd at the 2019 U.S. Open. A win at Torrey Pines could vault Rahm to number one in the World Golf Rankings.