One of the truly great stretches of golf in PGA Tour history kicks off this weekend as we head to TPC Southwind for the annual WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational. The World Golf Championship events always bring out a strong and this year will be no different as players hunt a slice of the monster $10,500,000 prize-pool!
As always, you can catch our full preview and betting tips for all of the action below!
As they always do, the WGC event has attracted a blockbuster field and this event in particular will be all the more important due to the crucial FedEx Cup points on offer. After this week, the PGA Championship and the Wyndham Championship will be the final two events that players have to accumulate points before the FedEx Cup playoffs start with The Northern Trust on 20th of August.
45 of the top 50 players in the world will be teeing it up this week at TPC Southwind, headlined by the likes of the new No.1 player in the world, Jon Rahm. Alongside Rahm are big names in Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau, Webb Simpson, Xander Schauffele, Brooks Koepka, Patrick Reed, Rickie Fowler, Jordan Spieth and Tommy Fleetwood just to name a few.
Brooks Koepka will be defending his title for the next two weeks in a row as he plays in the WGC event and the PGA Championship next week. He’ll desperately need to find some form if he wants to be competitive in either tournament though, after missing the cut in two of his last three events.
Some of the big names who currently sit outside the all-important top 125 in the FedEx Cup who will be hunting points this weekend include Sergio Garcia, Danny Willett, Shane Lowry and Brooks Koepka.
TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tennessee has been the host of the St.Jude Classic since the 1989 season and the course plays at just over 7,200 yards as a Par 70. In 2019. It was designed by Ron Prichard with the consultation of Hubert Green and Fuzzy Zoeller and opened back in 1988.
The course regularly ranks inside the top 10 for difficulty and generally the winning score is in the low to mid-teens under par. One of the more famous holes on the course is the Par 3 eleventh, which is a replica of the famous island green 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass.
The course is always a tough challenge from tee-to-green, with it ranking in the lower portion of PGA Tour courses in terms of fairways and greens hit. We’ll be targeting strong scrambling and bogey avoidance this week.
After his fantastic win at Muirfield Village in the Memorial Tournament, Rahm will play his first tournament as the No.1 ranked player in the world this week. Rahm was acutally pretty slow out of the blocks when the season resumed, missing the cut at the Charles Schwab before relling off T33, T37 and T27 at his next three events. Finished 7th in his first trip to TPC Southwind last season on the back of a score of 10 under par.
The No.3 ranked player in the world is arguably the form golfer on the PGA Tour at the moment. Has played five tournaments since the season resumed, resulting in a T10, T8, CUT, 2nd and T18. Already has two wins in the 2020 season and it feels like a third is in the works with his current form. Currently sits atop the FedEx Cup standings and will no doubt want to keep it that way. Ha salso made just one trip to TPC Southwind, where he finished 12th last season.
The last two times Rory has made the trip to Southwind he has finished 7th and 4th and although he hasn’t set the world alight since the PGA Tour resumed, it’s almost impossible to leave him off this list. Sits in fifth place on the FedEx Cup standings and can jump as high second with 550 points available to the winner this weekend. A high finish in the FedEx Cup is crucial for the Northern Irishman if he wants to defend his title at the Tour Championship and become the first player to win three FedEx Cups.
Missed the cut at the Memorial two weeks ago but has to be respected after the string of performances he has put together since the PGA Tour resumed. After three straight top 10 finishes, Bryson finally earned the elusive win at the Rocket Mortgage Insurance and his ridiculous length off the tee should be a massive advantage when attacking the smaller than usual greens at TPC Southwind.
Back before the TPC Southwind event had WGC status, it was simple the St. Jude Classic and Daniel Berger was a two time winner of that event in 2016 and 2017. The 28th ranked player in the world is in some solid form at the moment as well, recording his first win of the season a few weeks ago at the Charles Schwab Challenge and racking up five top ten finishes through 12 events played this season.
There is quite a few players who are out of form coming into this tournament and a few more European Tour players who haven't played in a long time. I don't think a top 40 finish will be too difficult for the PGA Tour players who have played multiple tournaments since the season returned and had the opportunity to play themselves back into form. Love the value of Ryan Palmer this week. Fresh off a great finish at the Memorial and knows TPC Southwind extremely well.
Ryan Palmer ($91) – Has already racked up two top 10 finishes since the PGA Tour resumed including a 2nd place at the Memorial just a few weeks ago. Was a mainstay in the St. Jude Classic throughout the years, playing in seven straight tournaments from 2012-2018 for just one missed cut and two top 10 finishes.
Max Homa ($81) – Love the way the 29-year-old is playing at the moment. He narrowly missed out on a win at the 3M Open on the weekend and a strong performance here would see him jump into the all-important top 30 in the FedEx Cup standings.
Billy Horschel ($46) – Outside of Berger who has two wins at TPC Southwind, there probably isnt a player in the field this week with a better record at the course. Although Horschel doesn’t have a win in Memphis, he has racked up five top 10 finishes in his last six trips there, including a 9th in a strengthened field last season.
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