Collin Morikawa is looking to atone for last year’s debacle at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. He played extraordinary golf for 54 holes before blowing a six-shot lead on Sunday.
It was a disappointing finish for a player who’s otherwise played extraordinarily well at Kapalua.
Morikawa has not only qualified for this event every year since 2020, but he’s never finished outside the top seven. He posted T-7th (71-71-70-71) in his debut, T-7th (69-65-65-73) in 2021, T-5th (68-70-67-62) in 2022, and settled for solo second (64-66-65-72) two shots behind Jon Rahm last year.
His slip-up last year will be hard to keep out of his mind, but Morikawa should bear in mind that he has never shot over par at this venue with nine rounds in the 60s over his last 12.
The former Cal Golden Bear had a good year in 2023 capped off by a win this fall at the ZOZO Championship. Morikawa can also keep that top of mind in case he has doubts about his ability to finish off a tournament.
The 26-year-old ranks 11th on the PGA Tour in Strokes Gained: Total (1.438) despite a putter that ranked outside the top 100. Morikawa is one of the more accurate ball strikers on the planet, ranking fourth in SG: Off-the-Tee (1.547) and second in SG: Approach (1.012).
He comes to Hawaii on a streak of three straight top-10s and five top-25s. Morikawa ended 2023 with seven top-10s. He’s had seven or more top-10s all four years on the PGA Tour.