The 2015 Open Championship Featured Groups: The ten groups to watch for at St. Andrews
One of the many things I like about The Open Championship is the fact every group starts on the first hole. It’s just like at Augusta, every threesome at The Masters starts on the first hole. No one starts their major run on the 10th hole.
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It just makes for a more enjoyable watch. Plus, when writing articles like this it is one less thing to write and factor in.
With that said, let’s take a look at some of the best groups to watch for this week at St. Andrews.
3:33 AM ET/8:34 AM ET-8:33 BST/13:34 BST Tom Watson, Ernie Els, Brandt Snedeker
Great group for all three golfers. Brandt Snedeker and Tom Watson don’t mess around. They grip it, rip it, walk quickly to their ball and wack it again. Ernie Els isn’t fast, but he isn’t super slow either. Plus, all three are friendly with each other. There should be a lot of good vibrations.
Also, for Snedeker, being in this group could be foreshadowing of something bigger. Watson and Els are both former Open Champion winners. Maybe Snedeker wins The Open Championship this week.
4:00 AM ET/9:01 AM ET-9:00 BST/14:01 BST Bubba Watson, Ian Poulter, Charl Schwartzel
Based off how the weather is looking, I could see Bubba Watson shoot a 62 on Thursday and follow it up with an 85 on Friday. Or since he is playing with Ryder Cup hero Ian Poulter the gallery could give Watson grief and he just mentally checks out early. Charl Schwartzel isn’t a sexy pick and he won’t get much attention with Watson and Poulter, but he is quietly an under-the-radar pick to win The Open.
4:11 AM ET/9:12 AM ET-9:11 BST/14:12 BST Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Patrick Reed
From Patrick Reed’s perspective, you have to hope this isn’t a group of three generations of “best golfers without a major.” Lee Westwood’s window is probably about shut now. Sergio Garcia still has a few years left and he may finally win that major this week, but it still alludes him at this point.
Reed got his first taste of major contention at the U.S. Open he fell off Saturday, but it was a good learning experience. As I said, though, hopefully in ten years Reed isn’t still looking for his first major.
4:33 AM ET/9:34 AM ET-9:33 BST/14:34 BST Jordan Spieth, Hideki Matsuyama, Dustin Johnson
Obviously, the best group on paper. Let’s just hope all three are on their A-game as this will be an absolute treat to watch. You could create the perfect golfer by combining these three. Take D.J.’s length off the tee, Matusyama’s accuracy, and Spieth’s putting and scrambling ability.
4:55 AM ET/9:56 AM ET-9:55 BST/14:56 BST Jason Day, Tiger Woods, Louis Oosthuizen
Tough break for Louis Oosthuizen and Jason Day. You know Oosthuizen had to have sighed and shook his head when he saw he was paired with Tiger Woods again. Day, meanwhile, has to overcome another obstacle.
Tough break for both, however, Woods shouldn’t be as bad as he was at the U.S. Open. I don’t think he will completely tank his group again.
7:50 AM ET/2:49 AM ET-12:50 BST/7:49 BST Jason Dufner, Miguel Angel Jimenez, John Daly
Nobody from this threesome is winning, but this is the ultimate party group. You’ve got Jason Dufner bringing the dip, Miguel Angel Jimenez bringing the cigars, and John Daly bringing the booze.
Then you’ve got the ladies running around showing their affection for Jimenez as he does his stretching routine. Hey, Dufner is newly single, and Daly is Daly. This is just the ultimate party group. I’d love to be the 4th golfer in this group just for the sake of being there. This is the fun shoot-the-breeze group.
8:01 AM ET/3:00 AM ET-13:01 BST/8:00 BST Tommy Fleetwood, Zach Johnson, Bernd Wiesberger
Tommy Fleetwood and Bernd Wiesberger are a couple of the sexy value picks this week. It seems as though everybody is going to be on them. It’ll be interesting to see how they perform. Zach Johnson is going to do his best to just grind away and hang in there.
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9:12 AM ET/4:11 AM ET-14:12 BST/9:11 BST Adam Scott, Martin Kaymer, Jimmy Walker
This is a group that, for the most part, has struggled this year. Adam Scott turned things around at the U.S. Open and looks sharp again. Martin Kaymer and Jimmy Walker are still searching for their game. We’ll see if it finally clicks for them this week.
9:34 AM ET/4:33 AM ET-14:34 BST/9:33 BST Phil Mickelson, Henrik Stenson, Matt Kuchar
A stark contrast from the terminator Henrik Stenson and the happy-go-lucky Matt Kuchar and Phil Mickelson. Both Kuchar and Stenson are looking for their first major title. Stenson’s game is on point, and Kuchar is peaking at the right time. He is feeling great and the proof is in the pudding with his T-2 last week.
9:45 AM ET/4:44 AM ET-14:45 BST/9:44 BST Justin Rose, Sir Nick Faldo, Rickie Fowler
Sir Nick Faldo sounded really fired up to be here at The Open. He saw the oddsmakers have him as something like 7/1 to make the cut and I think he has got himself a chip on his shoulder. I think he’ll give a good account of himself and not bring down Justin Rose and Rickie Fowler.