The 2021 FedEx Cup Playoffs got underway on the weekend as Tony Finau captured the Northern Trust from New York. We head to Caves Valley Golf Club in Maryland this week for the 2nd leg of the playoffs, the BMW Championship.
We have you covered with a full preview and betting tips for the BMW Championship below.
Caves Valley Golf Club, Thursday August 26th - Sunday August 29th
It was a heartbreaking end to a fantastic week for Aussie Cam Smith at the Northern Trust. Smith broke the Liberty National course record in Round 3 to have a share of the lead heading into the final round and shot 67 on Monday to force a playoff against Tony Finau. In the first playoff hole Smith sliced his drive out of bounds and was never able to recover.
Finau claimed the win in the first playoff event, taking the lead in the all-important FedEx Cup standings ahead of Jon Rahm and Smith.
125 was almost in half after the Northern Trust, with only the top 70 players on the FedEx Cup standings following the firs event qualifying for the BMW Championship. Players who sat outside the top 70 but forced their way in after a good performance at the Northern Trust include Alex Noren, Erik Van Rooyen, Tom Hoge, Harold Varner III, Keith Mitchell and Harry Higgs.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, players who started the week inside the top 70 but missed out on qualification were Matthew Wolff, Matt Fitzpatrick, Tyrrell Hatton, Martin Laird, Troy Merritt and J.T. Poston.
Only the top 30 following the BMW Championship this week will qualify for the Tour Championship at East Lake next week, giving themselves a chance at the mammoth $20,000,000 FedEx Cup title. Notable names on the top 30 bubble who will need a strong performance include Patrick Reed, Rory McIlroy, Kevin Kisner and Marc Leishman.
Caves Valley Golf Club in Owings Mills, Maryland will host the BMW Championship for the first time this season, the first time it has hosted a PGA Tour sanctioned event. The course has been in the regular rotation for a long list of NCAA and amateur level tournaments over the years, but will finally get the call up for one of the biggest tournaments of the year this week.
The course opened in 1991 and is known for its fast greens, rolling fairways and numerous water hazards. Players will need to be solid from tee-to-green this week, avoiding the water hazards and hitting greens to give themselves the best chance at converting birdies or leaving themselves tap in pars.
At over 7,540 yards as a Par 72, the recent revamp of the course for PGA Tour specifications has turned it into a behemouth, so expect the big hitters to have a built in advantage here.
The two big dogs we are targeting this week are the Europeans Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy. They are two of the best players in the world off the tee, which will be massive at this long course.
Rahm is one of the in form golfers in the world at the moment. His last five tournametns have resulted in a T8 at the PGA Championship, a withdrawal from the Memorial Championship when he had a 5 stroke lead, a win at the U.S. Open, a T3 at the Open Championship and a 3rd at the Northern Trust. The guy has barely played a bad shot over that period, let alone a bad round. Love the look of the No.1 ranked player in the world this week as he chases his maiden FedEx Cup title.
Rory hasnt been in world beating form of late but on these extra long courses, he is always in the mix due to him being arguably the best driver in the world. He finished T43 at the Northern Truston the weekend and was coming off a T4 at the Olympics and a T12 at the WGC event in the few weeks prior.
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