PGA players to watch in 2018

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    Profile photo of aceventurer aceventurer 

    Last season was certainly one for first time winners on the PGA Tour. In all there were 14 first time winners, third highest since 2000 (2002 had 18!) and there were three first time Major winners. Also it was interesting to note that there are a lot of new kids on the block who aren’t afraid of the big names and are willing to take them on.
    I’ve had a look at the runners and riders for this season and hopefully I can point you in the direction of some winners.

    It’s been a long time coming but Peter Uilein at last gets to play on the PGATour full time. On his 21st birthday Uilein won the US Amateur in 2010 and it was expected that he would get his PGATour card. Instead he won the Madeira Open in 2013 and got exemption to the European Tour. Unfortunately he didn’t manage to get his PGA Tour card until last year when he gained enough non member points to gain qualification to the Web.comTour Finals and then proceeded to win the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Open. Already this season he has had two top ten finishes. In the Race to Dubai he finished in the top twenty and is now exempt to play in both the WGC-Mexico Championship and the Open CHampionship. Certainly one to keep a close eye on this year.

    Stats for 2016-17 (Strokes gained):
    Off The Tee: 7th Approach to the Green: 159th Around the Green: 124th Putting: 57th Total: 53rd

    Is this the year the Patrick Reed fulfills his belief that he is one of the top players in the world. He certainly has belief in himself and doesn’t mind who knows it but 2017 wasn’t the best, not winning a single tournament. Last year he had a few issues with his equipment plus, kidney stones and his wife was due to give birth to his second child in December. We all know how good Reed is in a team competition and if he can bring that game to tournament golf he is going to hit it big this year. He might not play a lot of tournaments early in the year due to his new son, but I would expect him to hit the ground running and maybe get a few good results before the Masters comes around.

    Stats for 2016-17 (Strokes gained:
    Off the Tee: 68th Approach to the Green: T116th Around the Green: T45th Putting: 7th Total: 31st

    Twenty-five-year-old Patrick Cantley’s golfing career has been dogged by back problems, and for a golfer there’s nothing worse However he finished 29th in the Fed-Ex Cup after just playing 13 tournaments to spare his back. In his second start this season he won the Shriners Hospital for Children Open and that could be the beginning of a truly great season for the Californan. He likes to attack, which showed when he won the Shriners, and even if he doesn’t win he will certainly put on a show. I will be following him very closely over this year.

    Stats for 2016-17 (Strokes gained):
    Off the tee: 10th Approach to the Green: 23rd Around the Green: 99th Putting: 69th Total: 9th

    When Chesson Hadley won the Puerto Rico Open in 2014 it big things were expected from him but two years later he lost his card. But last season the 6ft 4in Hadley won twice on the Tour and also lost two play-offs. In his first three starts on the PGA Tour this season he had three top fives which made a lot of people suddenly look up and take notice. He knows how to close out a tournament and is going to be well worth perservering with over the season.

    Stats for 2016-17 (Strokes gained)
    Off The Tee: 17th Approach to the Green: 144th Around the Green: 118th Putting: 136th Total: 140th

    Kevin Kisner’s improvement over the last three years has been very steady and I think this year he will be competing at a higher level. A T3 at the Tour Championship in the last season’s finale has seen him continue his form with a T4 at the RSM Challenge in November at the beginning of this season. He has also finished T12 and T11 in two unofficial events, the Hero Challenge and the QBE Shootout. I have long been an admirer of his and am expecting big things this year from 33-year-old from South Carolina.

    Stats for 2016-17 (Strokes gained)
    Off the Tee: 60th Approach to the Green: T40th Around the Green: T84th Putting: 20th Total: 13th

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