The countdown to The Masters is on! We need to get through just one more weekend on the PGA Tour before the 2020 Masters week officially kicks off. We head to Memorial Park Golf Course in Houston for the annual Houston Open starting this Thursday and as usual, we have you covered with a full preview and betting tips for the event below!
After a pretty quiet event in Bermuda last week, the PGA Tour ramps back up again this week as some of the top players in the world are back in action in preparation for The Masters next week. It was veteran Brian Gay who took out the Bermuda Championship, claiming his fifth PGA Tour title and first since 2013.
Gay will be back in the action this week but will have a much stronger field to compete against as some of the best players in the world return from breaks. The No.1 ranked player in the world, Dustin Johnson, will play for the first time since his positive COVID-19 test, as will Australian Adam Scott. Outside of Johnson, there is plenty of top level talent set to be in the mix this week in the likes of Tyrrell Hatton, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka, Tony Finau, Sung-Jae Im, Viktor Hovland, Jason Day, Sergio Garcia and Jordan Spieth.
Past winners who will be competing in the Houston Open include Phil Mickelson, Hunter Mahan, DA Points, Matt Jones, Russell Henley and Lanto Griffin, who will be defending his crown after taking out the 2019 title.
Memorial Park Golf Course in Houston will host the Houston Open for the first time since 1963 this season. The course plays as a Par 71 at just over 7,000 yards and was founded in 1912. It has recently undergone a significant renovation with help from star PGA Tour player Brooks Koepka alongside re-designer Tom Doak.
A major part of the renovation was the widening of fairways and the removal of some trees, which should make the course much easier for PGA Tour players off the tee. It’s not a particularly long course, so expect the bombers to be brought back to the field a touch this week.
Brooks Koepka ($19) hasn’t done a lot to inspire confidence over the past year. The former No.1 ranked player in the world has battled injuries and form slumps to drop to 12th in the Official World Golf Rankings and hasn’t won a tournament since the WGC-FedEx in July of last year. It seems only fitting that Koepka will go well here to really throw his name in the mix for Masters Contenders next week, and his help designing the course should play a massive factor. Was T28 in his first PGA Tour start of the season at the CJ Cup a few weeks ago, turning in two scores of 68 across the four rounds.
James Hahn seems to play where he can on the PGA Tour and when he does, he generally does pretty well. Was unable to make the field in the invitational CJ Cup and ZOZO Championship events, but before that he was in some terrific form. Finished T9 in the Safeway Open, T6 in the Corales and T5 in the Shriners, making it three straight top 10 finishes in his three PGA Tour events of the season. Veterans have been on fire in the PGA Tour of late, with the average winning age this season standing at over 37 years of age. Back the 39-year-old to do well here.
Sung-Jae Im ($26 at Sportsbet)
Lanto Griffin ($41 at Sportsbet)
Phil Mickelson ($81 at Sportsbet)
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