THE AT&T Byron Nelson Championship sees the PGA Tour return to Texas for the second half of the Texas Swing.
Now the Players Championship is over the players begin to focus on the US Open in a few weeks time. Trinity Forest hosts the tournament for the first time and was opened for play in 2016 after being built on a landfill site.
There are few trees on the course, despite its name, and has been designed in the style of a UK links course, although it’s 300-odd miles away from the coast.
- COURSE: Trinity Forest Golf Club, Dallas, Texas, 7380 yards, Par 71.
He lives locally, Trinity Forest is his home club so he has course knowledge, has good form on links-type courses and his stats stack up for this course. So what’s not to like about Hossler this week.
In April he lost to Ian Poulter in a play-off for the Houston Open after leading by one coming up the 72nd hole. He seems to like playing coastal courses.
While still an amateur in 2015 he finished 58th in the US Open at Chambers Bay and we know how tough that course was. Also this year he was 10th after 36 holes at El Camaleon, fifth after 54 holes at Torrey Pines and second at Pebble Beach after 36 holes show he seems comfortable on coastal courses.
He is hitting the ball well and his short game isn’t too shabby which is good on a links course. I fancy him to put up a strong showing this week.
- Scrambling: 60.63% (64th). Strokes Gained Putting: 0.44 (32nd).
It’s good to see Uihlein doing well on the PGA Tour after honing his skills on the European and Asian Tours. He was playing well at the tail end of last year but has struggled a bit recently with three missed cuts in April.
However, a T5 finish at Quail Hollow a fortnight ago moved him up to 57th in the world rankings. His third-round nine-under 62 was just amazing golf and something to behold.
He is another who seems comfortable on links golf, Uihlein won the US Amateur Championship at the aforementioned Chambers Bay in 2010. A sixth (2013) and fifth (2017) at the Puerto Rico Open, which was also a coastal course, and a second place at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship which incorporates Kingsbarns, Carnoustie and St Andrews.
- Scrambling: 60.16% (71st). Strokes Gained Putting: 0.017 (115th).
It’s good to see Jimmy Walker back in form, a fourth at the Valero Texas Open and a superb T2 at the Players Championship last week (his best finish since being diagnosed with Lyme disease).
Since the Masters he has had T20-4-T25-T2 finishes and has been playing some steady golf. Struggled at the turn of the year but had a strong AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.
He took three weeks off after the Arnold Palmer Invitational and came back strongly with a T20 in the Masters. His strokes Gained Putting stats for the Texas Open and The Players last week are over 1.0 so if he can find the green in regulation Jimmy will be contesting on Sunday.
- Scrambling: 57.69% (127th). Strokes Gained Putting: 0.482 (23rd).
A T9 at the Masters was a great performance from Australian Marc Leishman and his fifth top 10 of the season. He is beginning to play consistently well not just on the big occasion and plays well in windy conditions.
Unfortunately he has not performed since the Masters, with a missed cut and a T63 last week, but his performances in The Open show he can play links courses (T2 2015, T6 2017) and with his ability in the windy conditions could be contender here. His putting has let him down recently but it can also be red hot so hoping for the latter this week.
- Scrambling: 60.22% (69th) Strokes Gained Putting: -0.037 (125th).
- 1.5pts ew Beau Hossler (Betfred, 30-1) – 6 places
- 1.5pts ew Peter Uihlein (Coral, 50-1) – 7 places
- 1.5pts ew Jimmy Walker (Coral, 20-1)
- 1.5pts ew Marc Leishman (Coral, 25-1)