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Five Players to Watch on the BMW PGA Championship

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Five Players to Watch on the BMW PGA Championship

In two weeks, all of golf’s consideration can be on the Ryder Cup matches in Rome.

In the meantime, although, there’s a giant event that begins Thursday: the BMW PGA Championship on the Wentworth Club in Surrey, England.

As normal, the sector is filled with high contenders. Rory McIlroy, Viktor Hovland, Matt Fitzpatrick, Tyrrell Hatton, Tommy Fleetwood and the defending champion, Shane Lowry, are all set to play earlier than they be part of Team Europe, which can attempt to seize the Cup for the fifth time within the final seven competitions.

Here are 5 different gamers to keep watch over.

In 2014, the long run couldn’t have appeared brighter for Scott. The yr earlier than, he grew to become the primary golfer from Australia to win the Masters Tournament, and he had now ascended to No. 1 on the planet. In his early 30s, Scott, possessing among the best swings within the sport, was nonetheless in his prime.

Those days are gone.

Scott, 43, who has 14 victories on the PGA Tour, hasn’t received for the reason that Genesis Invitational in early 2020. At the majors, he hasn’t completed within the Top 10 since tying for seventh within the 2019 United States Open at Pebble Beach. His greatest exhibiting within the majors this yr was a tie for twenty ninth within the P.G.A. Championship at Oak Hill close to Rochester, N.Y.

Still, there’s cause to imagine that he’s not completed simply but. From May by means of August, Scott, ranked No. 43, completed within the Top 10 in 4 of his 9 begins, arising simply wanting qualifying for the FedEx Cup playoffs.

He tied for 14th at Wentworth in 2021 and tied for forty second in 2022.

A vivid future might also await Ludvig Aberg of Sweden.

Aberg, 23, who turned skilled three months in the past, received the Omega European Masters in Switzerland earlier this month. The subsequent day, he was one of many Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald’s six picks to be a member of Team Europe.

Formerly the world’s top-ranked beginner, he caught Donald’s consideration in January throughout a event in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

“He was drawn alongside [the vice captain] Edoardo Molinari that week, and he let me know how impressed he was with this young guy from Sweden,” Donald advised Golf Digest.

“And it was my job as captain to keep my options open for anyone to make the team,” he added.

Aberg, who performed golf at Texas Tech, grew to become the primary participant to safe his tour card within the United States by ending first on the 2023 PGA Tour University Ranking. He has made the reduce in six of his seven tour begins since turning professional, his greatest efficiency a tie for fourth on the John Deere Classic.

For Tom Kim of South Korea, 21, who’s making his debut on this event, the long run could also be right here already. Kim, ranked No. 18, certified for the Tour Championship at East Lake, the ultimate occasion of the playoffs, and completed in a tie for twentieth.

He had a powerful 2022-23 season, recording 9 Top 10 finishes in 26 begins, together with a victory on the Shriners Children’s Open in Las Vegas, a tie for second on the British Open at Royal Liverpool and a tie for eighth within the U.S. Open on the Los Angeles Country Club. At the Shriners occasion, Kim grew to become the primary participant since Tiger Woods in 1996 to win twice on the PGA Tour earlier than turning 21.

Kim, who has been an expert since he was 15, is an entertaining participant and offered one of the vital amusing moments of the yr when he fell within the mud at Oak Hill and washed his garments off within the creek.

Rahm, ranked No. 3, must get again in type and quick — for his personal sake and for the sake of Team Europe.

The No. 1 seed heading into the playoffs, he tied for thirty seventh and thirty first within the first two occasions and closed at East Lake with one other disappointing exhibiting to tie for 18th within the last standings. Rahm, who’s from Spain, didn’t win as soon as in 10 appearances after his comeback victory over Brooks Koepka within the Masters. In reality, from May by means of August, he compiled solely two Top 10 outcomes, a kind of being a tie for second at Royal Liverpool.

Rahm, 28, who had held the highest spot for 30 consecutive weeks, will not be a fan of the present playoff format.

“You can win every single tournament up until this one,” he advised reporters at East Lake. “You have a bad week, you finish 30th, and now you’ll forever be known as 30th in the FedEx Cup this season. I don’t think that’s very fair.”

Rahm tied for second with McIlroy finally yr’s occasion at Wentworth, a stroke behind Lowry.

While he received’t be on the U.S. squad heading to Rome, it’s nonetheless a giant week for Horschel, 36, who received this occasion in 2021. He completed within the Top 10 solely thrice in 22 begins this previous season on the PGA Tour.

One of these Top 10 outcomes got here in his last event, the Wyndham Championship, when he completed fourth. Horschel, ranked No. 50, turned in a career-low 62 within the second spherical and adopted with a 63 to take pleasure in a share of the lead after 54 holes. A victory would have put him within the playoffs, however he faltered with a 72.

His season’s low level was an 84 within the first spherical on the Memorial Tournament in early June. He rebounded the subsequent day with a 72 however didn’t make the reduce.

“Listen, we all struggle at this game, and I’m not the first PGA Tour pro to play bad for an extended stretch,” Horschel advised Golf Digest in June. “There are some people that think we should play well every week right. But golf’s a tough game. Life’s a tough game.”

Source web site: www.nytimes.com