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Jul
12
2015

2015 British Open Preview: The Top 10 Contenders.

The Open Championship Media Day

 

The British Open is headed back to the home of golf – St. Andrews, and there are a couple of major story lines. Jordan Spieth is going for the 3rd leg of the grand slam. Does Tiger Woods even have the remotest change of contending? It’s a shame defending champion Rory Mcilory will miss the tournament with an injury suffered while playing soccer.

Rickie Fowler didn’t make my top 10, but I feel he should be mentioned as a threat after winning the Scottish Open. Other than a sloppy U.S. Open, he’s starting to go from a good to great player. He just lacks a major.

1. Jordan Spieth

Throw out what you may think a 21 year old golfer should be at this point in their young career. Jordan Spieth has won this year’s first two majors, and approaches the game like a seasoned veteran. Spieth may have the best golfing mind since Jack Nicklaus, and frankly I don’t think if he wins a third straight major I’d be that shocked. Oh yea he shot a 61 at this week’s John Deere Classic in the 3rd round, and won the tournament. I’d say he’s ready.

All Sports Discussion Odds of Winning: 10 to 1

2. Dustin Johnson

If Dustin Johnson has recovered from his U.S. Open where putted himself out of the major on the 18th hole, then he is a big time threat to win the British Open. He can over power just about any course he plays on. He had top 15 finish the last time the British Open was at St. Andrews. Johnson also has a couple of other top 10’s in the Open Championship. Remember in 2013 when Phil Mickelson turned a bitter U.S. Open loss into a British Open win? That’s a possibility here.

All Sports Discussion Odds of Winning: 12 to 1

3. Justin Rose

It is rather astonishing that Justin Rose burst onto the golfing scene back in 1998 with a T4 at that year’s British Open, but hasn’t had a British Open top 10 since. He already has major to his credit (2013 U.S. Open), and he T2 at this year’s Masters. He also has a win at the Zurich Open, and played solidly at the Scottish Open this week. I really like Rose’s chances to contend this week.

All Sports Discussion Odds of Winning: 15 to 1

4. Adam Scott

How important are caddies? Adam Scott is a different player with Stevie Williams on his bag. His results this year were inconsistent at best. Williams joins him for the U.S. Open and he goes T4. We know Scott has the all ground game to play any course and any major. He’s has finished in the top 10 of 10 of his last 18 majors, including 3 straight British Opens. I really believe Scott will end his career with multiple major wins. Let’s not forget for both of Tiger Woods’s St. Andrews wins, Stevie Williams was there.

All Sports Discussion Odds of Winning: 20 to 1

5. Jason Day

Jason Day has been on the cusp of winning a major for a number of years now. He has 8 top 10 major finishes since 2010. Day doesn’t have top 10s in a British Open, but I think could change this year. He struggled with vertigo at the U.S. Open, but that seems to under control now. Jason has all the tools to win a major, and this could be his.

All Sports Discussion Odds of Winning: 25 to 1

6. Bubba Watson

Bubba Watson is the left handed version of Dustin Johnson. Both with ability to over power any course they play on, but they also possess just volatility in their games, that can miss a cut as likely as contend. Watson has a couple of majors (2 Majors) that Johnson lacks, and when if he keeps himself composed he can definitely contend. If you don’t think St. Andrews is a big hitters course, Tigers Woods in his prime won twice there, and so did John Daly back in 1995..

All Sports Discussion odds of Winning: 30 to 1

7. Henrik Stenson

Despite being ranked in the top 10 in the world, Henrik Stenson is flying a bit under the radar, but he shouldn’t be. Back in 2010 at St. Andrews, Stenson finished 3rd. He also has two other top 3’s at the British Open. He recently had a 2nd at the BMW International, so he comes in playing well. He’s been close to winning to major for awhile, but hasn’t been able to close the deal. At age 39 it won’t get any easier to get that first major.

All Sports Discussion odds of Winning: 35 to 1

8. Louis Oosthuizen

There’s a very good reason why Louis Oosthuizen is on this top 10 list. The last time the British Open was held at St. Andrews Oosthuizen blew away the field back in 2010 by seven shots. He comes in off a T2 at the U.S. Open, but there was recent MC at the the Traveler’s Championship. Still Oothuizen’s postive recent history at the St. Andrews bodes well for to make a run at his 2nd major.

All Sports Discussion odds of Winning: 40 to 1

9.  Phil Mickelson

Phil Mickelson won the British Open in 2013, and a T2 in 2011. While he had trouble earlier in his career at the British Open, Mickelson is as much a threat to win this major as most anyone in this major. He’s finished in 2nd place in 2 of his last 3 majors, and these days Mickelson leaves his best golf for the biggest events.

All Sports Discussion odds of Winning: 45 to 1

10. Tiger Woods

I found it odd that so many declared Tiger Woods ready to turn the corner after a T32 finish at Greenbrier Classic, but it was a sign of progress. He shot 3 rounds in the 60s, and in general did show some good signs. Woods chase of Jack Nicklaus is over, but it’s not he’s not ever going to contend again. St. Andrew is a place he’s won 2 previous British Opens, and in 2010 he had a top 25 finish. It’s not out of the question he could contend, but winning would be a real stretch.

All Sports Discussion odds of Winning: 50 to 1


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