Ray Flanagan previews the USPGA GOLF.
thought for the day: My favourite PGA was when backing Jason Day to win at Whistling Straits in 2016.
Normally held in August the so called “minor of the majors” moves to a new calendar sport taking place at Bethpage this week.
From what I gather the course will suit long accurate drivers who are also proficient at finding greens in regulation. Good putting may not be as essential as it is normally, therefore on that basis I have narrowed it down to a few contenders who I might normally overlook based on putting.
The short list is Hideki Matsuyama, Dustin Johnson, Adam Scott, Xander Schauffle, Tony Finau, Justin Rose, Bruce Koepka, Jon Rahm.
It is no surprise to see big Dustin being tipped to win by many and no one would begrudge the South Carolina native his second major. At the prices however I will take a chance on the Japanese warrior Hideki Matsuyama.
Surprisingly the main Racing Post tip for the US Masters, he not surprisingly to my mind struggled there because he is simply not a good putter. This often can happen with tips, they do not feature in the event tipped or horse race tipped but then they pounce later in the year when least expected.
This pattern could well follow with Matsuyama who has the perfect tee to green game for Bethpage. He also has that bit of star quality about him when it all clicks that you need in a major winner. As always the big question mark is the putter but he may find more greens in regulation than anyone and the small greens may give him a better chance than he has most weeks.
Matsuyama for me.
1 pt ew-Hideki Matsuyama- 40-1 SkyBet-10 places.