Dustin Destined To Make Memories In Ohio
The Memorial Tournament
Jordan Spieth heads the betting for The Memorial Tournament in Dublin, Ohio, but three other players offer better value at bigger odds.
This is one of just five invitational tournaments on the PGA tour, which means it features a more competitive field of around 120 rather than the usual 156. It was established by Jack Nicklaus in 1976 at a course that he designed in the suburb of his home town of Columbus. For the first twenty years of its existence, there were only three non-US winners, but four of the last ten have been from outside the States.
The Muirfield Village Golf Club at Dublin, Ohio was designed as a testing course, rewarding golfers who think their way round, and takes some getting used to. The fairways are wide and forgiving, so although the rough is pretty long, the course does suit the longer hitter. The greens are small and fast, water is in play on many holes and there are plenty of traps for those who take on risky shots.
In The Bunker
Jordan Speith’s rise up the rankings has caused some American commentators to claim he’s the best player in the world. He has a way to go to topple Rory McIlroy, but nevertheless he is currently available at McIlroy-esque prices, and, like Rory, has been showing signs of weakness of late. He fluffed a chance to win at Colonial and finished down the field in Texas last week after failing to build on a second round 64. At 8/1 he looks a little short this week.
The Dustin Johnson resurgence came to a halt after his sixth at the Masters with a couple of ordinary efforts, but a fortnight off after the Players Championship appears to have refreshed him and he looked good when making the top ten at the Byron Nelson last weekend.
The wide Muirfield fairways give him plenty of margin for error from the tee and he is worth backing to improve on his 2011 fourth-placed finish at odds of 14/1.
Having struggled early in 2015, a swing adjustment helped Justin Rose recover his form in spectacular fashion, with a second at the Masters, and an impressive victory at the Zurich Classic, and although he finished down the field at Wentworth last time out, he can bounce back this week. At his best when picking his way round tough courses, Memorial is a good match for his game, as he showed when winning it in 2010. At 20/1 he’s a solid bet.
The final name to add to your shortlist is Kevin Na, who has been in solid form in recent weeks, bagging five top ten finishes in his last eight outings. Having failed to make much of an impact in this tournament previously, he came good last year, finishing second after losing out in a play-off with Hideki Matsuyama. At odds of 40/1 he’s worth backing to go one better in 2015.
*Prices correct at time of publication.