Almanac Golf – Golf Capital: The open and all that


A collection of my golf thoughts from the week plus some player performance/form notes for the next few days.

Opening drive:
The Women’s US Open was given some breathing space, or an open fairway if you will, with no PGA event on the weekend after the Greenbrier Classic got washed out only for the USGA to stuff it up. There was a late rules issue before Brittany Lang triumphed over Anna Nordqvist then the USGA President Diana Murphy fluffed her lines at the presentation. A repeat of her slurred presentation when Dustin Johnson won his first major recently. Why do golf club presidents insist on doing these presentations? You have a perfectly capable host right next to you on most occasions. Just stand there, hand over the trophy and smile!

Player performance notes:

Players I’m interested in to see how they go with notes that interest me and/or are related to capital investments, if that’s your thing, in the weekend’s big event.

The Open Championship
The only British men’s golf major for the year is at Royal Troon.

20 or lower: Adam Scott – There is an interesting trend of Honda Classic winners going on to claim this event in the same year. The already major winner is our 2016 candidate.
20-50: Louis Oosthuizen – Open winner in 2010 from South Africa
50-100: Charl Schwartzel – Also South African. He won the Masters in 2011.
50-100: Andy Sullivan – Consistent on European Tour. Top six finish in last two tournaments.
50-100: Scott Piercy – Like Todd Hamilton’s Open win fits the profile of a lesser-known USA player in form.
100-200: Danny Lee – Kiwi who plays in USA predominantly, came over and played well in the Scottish Open to finish T3.
100-200: Matthew Fitzpatrick – One of the young English players who has won this season already. Concerning that he missed the cut last weekend.
100-200: Russell Knox – A Scot but still needed to wear a beanie last weekend at Castle Stuart. Solid player who finished T10 in the event near Inverness.
100-200: Tyrell Hatton – He’s three years older than Fitzpatrick but yet to get a win on the main European Tour but has been contending of late.
250-500: Callum Shinkwin – Another young Brit (23) closed with a seven under score at Castle Stuart.
250-500: Brandon Stone – Won the South African Open in January.
500 or greater: Harold Varner III – Top seven finish at his last start on the US PGA Tour confirmed his spot. Some other nice top tens this season
500 or greater: Soo-min Lee – The Korean missed the cut at Castle Stuart but of significance his regular caddie has yielded the bag to Colin Cotter who is a Royal Troon caddie and has worked with Colin Montgomerie.

The less popular step-brother is always any main tour event on the weekend of a major and the PGA Tour’s Barbasol Championship is it this weekend. Blayne Barber is intriguing here. If you are taking the Adam Scott form-line from the Honda Classic Barber finished T3.

The LPGA stop is in Ohio for the Marathon Classic. Brooke Henderson attempted to qualify for this event last season but failed to do so. Since then the 18 year-old has won a major so the Canadian’s first time out at the Highland Meadows Golf Club will be interesting.

Apropos of the Greenbrier Classic cancellation mentioned above it gave golf officials an interesting study in unintended consequences at the weekend. It meant the US Women’s Open played in San Martin, California got a bit more clear air with the primary men’s tour event out of action due to severe flooding in West Virginia. I know this would never happen but it’s a nice thought that on the weekend of majors, of either gender, the main tour playing in the same country could not have an event that weekend. This would improve TV coverage opportunities and deliver a focus event for fringe supporters to take an interest in.

About Hamish Neal

Born in Lower Hutt New Zealand Hamish is forever wedded to all things All Black, All Whites, Tall Blacks and more. Writing more nowadays in his 'spare time' (what is that anyway?) but still with a passion for broadcasting. Has worked in various sports development roles in England, Northern Ireland and Australia.

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