5 Top Golfers To Watch at The US Open 2014

2014 U.S. Open – Five Top Golfers To Watch

5. Webb Simpson

Best finish in 2013-14 season: Won the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Reason to watch: Hard to believe, but this will mark just the 10th start in a major championship for Simpson. His previous nine have yielded one top-10 finish — that famously came in the 2012 U.S. Open at Olympic Club in San Francisco. OK, so we know he has the game to handle U.S. Open conditions.

4. Adam Scottadam-scott-pga

Best finish in 2013-14 season: Won the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial

Reason to watch: Here’s a little fun fact about the world’s No. 1-ranked player that you may not know and he’d probably prefer to not be reminded about — he’s never once finished inside the top 10 at a U.S. Open. In fact, it’s the only major championship in which he hasn’t finished in the top 3 at some point.

3. Sergio Garcia

Best finish in 2013-14 season: Third at the Shell Houston Open and the Players Championship

Reason to watch: Garcia tied for third at Pinehurst in the 2005 U.S. Open. He’s the only player in this week’s field to boast a top-10 finish the last time the national championship was held at Pinehurst No. 2. It’s pretty well documented that Garcia has yet to capture that elusive major. As arguably the best driver in the game and a fantastic ball-striker, there’s no reason to think Garcia can’t finally pick up major win No. 1 this week.

2. Rory McIlroy

Best finish in 2013-14 season: Third at the Shell Houston Open and the Players Championship

Reason to watch: Three weeks ago, McIlroy may not have made this list. He’s got a lot going on off the course. However, he’s used the golf course as his refuge from that off-the-course stuff and just a few weeks ago he was able to capture the European Tour’s biggest event in the BMW PGA Championship.

1. Phil Mickelson

Best finish in 2013-14 season: T11 at the Wells Fargo Championship and the FedEx St. Jude Classic

Reason to watch: In the pantheon of all-time great sports stories, a Phil Mickelson victory at Pinehurst No. 2 this week would have to rank right up there.

More at Five players to watch at the U.S. Open – PGA.com

Plenty of support at U.S. Open for Webb Simpson

Every time Webb Simpson walked past a grandstand at Pinehurst No. 2 on Thursday, he got a shout-out from a fan.

“Go Webb!”

Then on the 18th hole, after Simpson struck his first putt, one fan yelled: “Go Deacs!”

If there is a “local” favorite at the U.S. Open, there’s no question it’s Simpson, who won this tournament two years ago at Olympic Club in San Francisco.

Simpson, 28, has a lot of in-state fans to draw from. He grew up in Raleigh, played in college at Wake Forest and lives in Charlotte. He shot a 1-over 71 on Thursday in a relatively uneventful opening round.

Not quite the score Simpson had in mind after feeling good in practice rounds, but he’s also not going to complain.

“I had one of those days where I think it could have gone either way,” he said. “I’ve been hitting it really well, leading up to today. I was kind of hanging in there at the end.”

More at Plenty of support at U.S. Open for Webb Simpson – Charlotte Observer

US Open: Adam Scott and Jason Day disappoint on a poor day for Australia

World No.1 Adam Scott and No.7 Jason Day failed to live up to their lofty rankings in the opening round of the US Open at Pinehurst No.2, falling eight shots off the pace.

While former No.1 Martin Kaymer was in a class of his own on his way to a five-under par 65 and a three shot lead, Scott and Day struggled to rounds of 73 to be eight shots back and tied 67th.

Germany’s Kaymer, the 2010 PGA Championship winner and recent victor of the Players Championship, cemented a three-shot buffer with three birdies in his final five holes, skipping clear of Americans Kevin Na and Fran Quinn, 2010 US Open champion Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland and Zimbabwe’s Brendon De Jonge.

More at US Open: Adam Scott and Jason Day disappoint on a poor day for Australia – The Guardian

Sergio Garcia Suffering From Knee Injury at U.S. Open

Sergio Garcia is on the short list for Best Player to Never Win a Major, but he will have to overcome a knee injury if he wants to break through at Pinehurst this week.

According to the Golf Channel’s Todd Lewis, Garcia has an adema (swelling) on his left kneecap and cartilage damage in his left knee. As a result, he limited his practice round on Tuesday to nine holes.

At the end of May, Garcia withdrew in the second round of the BMW PGA Championship due to his knee injury.

More at Sergio Garcia Suffering From Knee Injury at US Open – Golf.com (blog)

US Open 2014: Martin Kaymer leads the way after Rory McIlroy misses out

“Rory played magnificently this morning,” McDowell said. “He hit some beautiful golf shots. I’d like to play like that some time, but it’s never going to happen. It wasn’t my best ball-striking display this morning, but you don’t have to strike it amazing around here. You just have to position the ball correctly at all times, unless you’re Rory McIlroy; the ball-striking display he put on this morning, that’s about the only way you can attack this course.

“I played the golf course very conservatively if you compare my round to Rory’s round. He played it aggressively, and I played it very conservatively.”

Still, it is numbers on scorecards that matter in major championships rather than exciting golf. The ferocity of Pinehurst No2, which was evident even on a relatively benign opening day, plays perfectly into the hands of McDowell The 2010 US Open champion relishes a scrap and the necessary mental approach that comes with it. “The winner of this tournament might not make more than 10 birdies this week,” McDowell added.

More at US Open 2014: Martin Kaymer leads the way after Rory McIlroy misses out – The Guardian

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