Who do you like this week at The Quail Hollow Championship? (I love that “non-corporate” name.) There is a great field this week on a course many of the pros really like. Outside of the Masters and The World Golf Championships, this is the best field of the year. Ten of the top fourteen players in the world are in the field. Many prominent names are on the past champions list from Quail Hollow: Woods, Furyk, Singh, Toms and defending champ Anthony Kim.
For all those people that like to take a shot at the tour and don’t understand what this tour does, consider this fact. Since 2003 when this tournament started, Wachovia has raised more than $9.4 million for charity. Golf has donated over $1.4 billion to charity over the years. In 2008 the Tour gave $124 million to charity. That is serious money and more than any other sport.
This is a great warm up for the Players Championship next week. Here’s our take on the boys that should contend, or at least be fun to watch this week. A word of warning, Tiger and Phil are playing, so you know what that means, All Tiger and Phil All the Time! CBS and the Golf Channel will show all their shots and we’ll get to see other players only when Tiger is in the Porta-Potty and Phil is looking for his ball.
· It’s time Sergio stopped talking (whining) and started playing. Step up and shut up, and maybe “the breaks will go your way.”
· Tiger and Phil have to be two favorites; they are only the best in the world. Could a rematch of the final round at the Masters be in the cards? It would be great, but that only happens about once every ten tears.
· Defending champ Anthony Kim‘s best finish on the PGA Tour this year is T2 at The Mercedes seems like last year. Injuries and globe-trotting around the world has kept Kim from playing his best. He loves this place and this could be his breakout start.
· David Toms won here in 2003 and has played great all year. The pressure of winning at home for New Orleans last week is off his back and he should play more relaxed this week.
· Ian Poulter is ready to capture his first PGA Tour win. 4/5 cuts made and 4 top twenty five finishes.
· Nick Watney is still one of the hottest golfers in the world.
· John Merrick is on the verge of his first win and has been very consistent all year.
· Three young kids that are fun to watch: James Nitties, from The Big Break, has been playing well and is an interesting kid, Webb Simpson started the season on fire but has cooled recently, a little bit of home cooking in North Carolina might be just what he needs. Danny Lee will try to make his first cut on the tour. He’s fun to watch and listen to.