I HOPE some of you paid attention to my PGA Players To Watch 2018 when I mentioned Patrick Reed.
If you did well done, I just wish I had taken my own advice as I left him off my selections for The Masters last week.
He didn’t do much wrong over the four days and deserved his win although my selection Rickie Fowler was Reed’s closest challenger and Jordan Spieth’s fourth-round push was something to behold.
This week the Tour reverts back to normal service with the RBC Heritage at the Harbour Town Golf Links, at Hilton Head, South Carolina. Since moving to the slot after The Masters there’s only been seven winners who didn’t take part at Augusta.
But seven out of the last 10 winners either did not play Augusta or missed the cut.Scrambling and proximity to hole could be important stats.
- Course: Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head, South Carolina: 7099 yards, Par 71.
Since his T9 here last year Harman has 11 top 10a, four of them this year. With only two top 10s here he’s not got a great record but was born just up the coast in Savannah, Georgia and knows the course and area well.
Although he is not a long hitter his all-round play is so good he is up near the top of the leaderboard regularly. He only managed a T44 last week at Augusta but it was only his second appearance there so we can forgive him that.
Smith has come to the fore over the past few weeks at the WGC Match Play (T5) and last weekend at Augusta. An impressive final-round 66, which included a back nine of six under, helped him to a -9 total and T5th.
The 24-year-old, who turned pro in 2013, won his PGA Tour event last year at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans. In his two appearances here he has finished T15 (2015) and T29 when he shot a first-round 67.
Course knowledge can be a benefit here and with Smith coming into this week with 11 top 20s in his last 14 outings he is coming here in form and should be in contention come Sunday.
- Scrambling: 66.38 (11th).