PGA Championship: Refreshed Rory McIlroy raring to go
The players are all happy and excited about the week ahead
I am writing this piece from the clubhouse of Kiawah Island, the host venue for this week’s US PGA Championship, the second golf major of this year.
The Ocean Course’s length (7,876 yards) is quite incredible!
This will be officially the longest US PGA Championship and longest major championship in terms of scorecard length in the history of the game.
The greens are excellent and not too fast in case the exposed course and greens receive unexpected stronger winds.
The golf course was designed by Pete and Alice Dye 30 years ago, and has previously hosted The Ryder Cup, ‘The War on the Shore’ in 1991, and the 2012 US PGA Championship won by Rory McIlroy.
The players are all happy and excited about the week ahead, with the course, tee set-up etc expertly delivered by our good friend from the PGA of America, Kerry Haigh.
There is excitement in the air with the fans being back to golf.
In the practice days there were big crowds, so this will add some new dynamics for us during this important week.
Regarding my players, Rory seems refreshed from his ‘week off’ and is quietly confident in his own style.
Danny Willett is back in the US after impressively hosting the recent BETFRED British Masters at The Belfry and we are working on just his short game these days.
Brooks Koepka will be playing, his knees seem OK, but fitness is always essential for a demanding major week.
Thomas Pieters has the game for this golf course
DP World Ambassador Ian Poulter and Henrik Stenson have been working hard on their respective games and Gary Woodland has already won one major, so is never afraid to mix it up at the top of the leaderboard, throughout the72 holes.
Victor Perez and Jazz Janewattananond are finding their feet at this level.
My big ‘Team Cowen’ buddy Mike Walker is looking after Matt Fitzpatrick; expect some good golf from him now or soon, he has had a very good trip to the PGA Tour.
The Ryder Cup in September, just over four months away, is now also on the agenda for players, managers, caddies and all the guys.
This is a huge week to get into contention or consolidate for those already there or thereabouts in the rankings.
Good luck to all my players and fingers crossed for another good week!
INTERNATIONAL GOLF THIS WEEK
PGA TOUR www.pgatour.com
US PGA Championship
Venue: Ocean Course at Kiawah Island, SC, US
Purse: $11 million
Challenge Tour www.europeantour.com
Venue: Österåkers Golfklubb, Åkersberga, Sweden
Pure Silk Championship
Venue: River Course, Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg, Virginia, US
Purse: $1.3 million
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