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Let’s flip the web page to this week’s Charles Schwab Challenge. Taking place on the historic Colonial Country Club, there are a variety of how to assault this old-school golf course. Featuring tree-lined fairways, doglegs, smaller than common greens, it could be a fruitful technique to merely again high quality ball-strikers at this quick par-70.
Violent thunderstorms have rolled by way of the Dallas-Fort Worth space over the previous week. Similar to the ultimate spherical of the AT&T Byron Nelson, primarily based off some participant’s social media accounts, Colonial CC seems to be underneath water. I’m positive the grounds crew and the PGA Tour may have the course prepared for Thursday, however it’ll absolutely play softer than common and will yield higher scores than years previous.
When taking a look at earlier champions, you’ll be able to see the number of angles by way of which a participant will be profitable at Hogan’s Alley. Kevin Na, Phil Mickelson, and Jordan Spieth have all been profitable in Fort Worth. They aren’t essentially the gamers you flip to when considering of pure ball-strikers. But in each Mickelson’s prime and through Spieth’s run, they had been. Na seems to be the one outlier of the bunch, so we received’t put an excessive amount of inventory into his statistical profile.
Then you even have Daniel Berger, Collin Morikawa, and Tony Finau who’ve all had good outings at Colonial CC. Berger takes a extra balanced strategy to the sport, however Morikawa and Finau will be bucketed into the ball-striking pool. So that would be the avenue that we take for the Charles Schwab Challenge. We will goal these gamers who’re robust ball-strikers, and hope that we are able to get again on observe after a 1-1-1 week on the PGA Championship.
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Round 1 Three-Balls (Odds through (*1*)):
Well, we talked about him on the prime of the article and there’s a actual likelihood that Morikawa may don the plaid jacket come Sunday night. Everything at Colonial CC units up completely for the 2020 PGA champion. Playing a good fade from the tee-box, Morikawa ought to find a way to make the most of his exact iron play to give himself loads of birdie alternatives.
In the first-round, this three-ball will come down to who putts the perfect. At first look, you’d put Morikawa on the backside of that checklist, however he hasn’t been all that dangerous on Thursdays not too long ago. He clocked 2.4 Strokes Gained: Putting in Round 1 on the RBC Heritage and one other 1.3 strokes gained final Thursday on the Ocean Course.
As for Thomas and Horschel, they each have had their struggles on the greens, albeit for various causes. Thomas has been struggling ever for the reason that Valspar Championship along with his placing stroke. While we now have seen some enchancment over the previous couple of weeks, the flat stick remains to be troublesome at instances. As the slight favourite over Morikawa, I’ll cross due to that.
Horschel alternatively has by no means gained strokes on these greens in three journeys. His ball-striking isn’t as dependable as the opposite twos, so if the putter doesn’t cooperate, he could also be in bother when matched up in opposition to the iron play of Morikawa and Thomas.
Like most weeks, I like Niemann quite a bit and that received’t be altering on the Charles Schwab Challenge. In his younger profession, he already has already carved out a pleasant historical past at Colonial CC. In three appearances, he has a top-10 in addition to two top-40 finishes. He’s a a lot totally different participant this time round in contrast to his earlier begins in Fort Worth. The purpose being that Niemann is a much-improved putter and a really robust Round 1 participant.
Riding the longest consecutive made reduce streak on the PGA Tour, it’s no shock that Niemann performs properly on Thursdays. As of late, he’s been getting the job executed regardless of his quick sport as he has struggled in that division.
I’m hoping that with tender circumstances, Niemann received’t be scrambling all too usually. His ball-striking and placing have been terrific and if he’s in a position to keep away from bother then I like him as one of many underdogs on this three-ball.
You can’t actually go incorrect with Reed or Rose. Both have nice historical past at Colonial CC and each are in nice kind. For me, it’s simply the ball-striking that may be a bit regarding. Rose gained practically 12-strokes on the greens on the Ocean Course en route to a top-10 end. That is solely unsustainable.
For Reed, he grinded over his final 36 holes and was in a position to publish the low weekend complete on the PGA Championship. It might take Reed a bit longer to get into the circulation of this event as there’s a potential fatigue issue being carried over from Kiawah.
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