Muirfield Village, Dublin OH
Seven of the world’s top-ten players visit “Jack’s place” this week to contest one of the most coveted tournaments outside of the four majors. It’s of course a Nicklaus design so that means it favours a fade off the tee and strong iron play.
Jon Rahm was running away with the tournament last year only to be informed of a positive Covid test and he had to withdraw after the third round. That left Patrick Cantlay and Collin Morikawa to battle it out in a playoff with Cantlay coming out on top. A lesser-known Scottie Scheffler finished two strokes back.
Who should win? – Jon Rahm 10/1
Rahm is actually driving the ball and hitting greens at the same or better rate than his 2021 breakthrough season. It’s his normally stellar putting and short game that has let him down most of this season. He won here in 2020 and likely would have prevailed last year so we know this course is well-suited to his game.
Who could win? – Patrick Cantlay 16/1, Collin Morikawa 22/1, Cameron Young 33/1, Xander Schauffele 20/1
Cantlay has two wins and a top-5 in the past four years at Muirfield but his game has been a little off recently – particularly at the PGA. But there is no questioning his comfort on this course. Morikawa has not looked himself over the past few months as his short game woes continue. But again, this course should suit his game to a tee. Young is playing this tournament for the first time but that hasn’t hindered him in his rookie season on TOUR. His last three tournament results – including the PGA – have been T3, T2, and T3. His SG approach ranking is weak but he makes up for it with stellar driving and scrambling. Schauffele has been one place out of the top – ten here over the last three consecutive years. His stats are good right across the board with no apparent weaknesses – it’s just that he seems to be that player who is always in the hunt but with an inability to close. Because he is so sound through the bag, he will either be that player for the rest of his career or he will soon have a breakthrough period paving the way for multiple victories.
Longer shots to consider – Davis Riley 60/1, Patrick Reed 55/1
Davis Riley is another rookie who has been a little under the radar. He has had an impressive stretch over the last five tournaments: three top-fives, a T9, and a T13. Reed had a top-five last year and a top-ten result in 2020. He has been struggling lately but showed up last week with a strong top-ten result.
Who will win – Jon Rahm
This is predicated on the belief and hope that Rahm spent last week working heavily on his putting and short game in order to gear up for not only the Memorial but to defend his U.S. Open crown in a couple of weeks.
Odds supplied by Bet365.com