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Thursday, June 14, 2012

US Open Preview

There are plenty of story-lines coming into this years US Open, which will be played at The Olympic Club, San Francisco California. Can Tiger Woods win his first major in four years? Will Luke Donald, or Lee Westwood finally win break through, and win a major championship? Can Rickie Fowler continue his hot play, and take home his first major championship? Will Phil Mickelson make enough short putts, and avoid the disastrous hole, to finally win his first US open, after finishing second five times at this tournament? Does Bubba Watson have the game to win another major, after winning the Masters earlier this year? Can Rory McIlroy regain his form and defend his title? more after the jump

This will be the fifth US open for the Olympic golf course. Previous Opens included; the 1955, 1966, 1987, and 1998 tournaments. There is no doubting that the USGA will have this course in top shape, and playing as difficult as possible. This is definitely true when you consider that Rory McIlroy won last years US open, at Congressional, by shooting 16 under par. The US open is supposed to be golf's toughest challenge, and you can bet it will be this year. The par 5 16th at 670 yards will be the longest hole in US Open history. If you can shoot even par this week, you will be near the top of the leaderboard. This is the way it should be.

 My pick to win this tourney is Tiger Woods. Woods has won twice this year, including two weeks ago at Memorial, and seems to be playing his best golf of the year. He is definitely due, as he unbelievably(for him) has not won a major in four years. To break his major championship drought, Tiger will have to drive the ball straighter. The rough at Olympic and the US open in general is unforgiving. If Woods can drive the ball well, fairly consistently, and make the majority of his putts that are inside of ten feet, he will be the victor. If Tiger drives the ball all over the place and can't handle the intense gallery following him, he will not be a factor in this tournament. This is the definition of a hit or miss pick, but I'm sticking with Tiger, because reports have him back to banging any broad that moves. I'm kidding, although I wouldn't blame him. Why not? If it helps his golf game even better. Winning this tournament would mean the world for Tiger's confidence, and would mean he is back.

Other favorites to win the Open include; Luke Donald, Lee Westwood, Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, and Bubba Watson. None of these aforementioned players, have won a US Open. Donald, Westwood, and Johnson are all looking for their first major championship victory. Phil has finished second five times at this tourney, while Bubba won the Masters earlier this year. Luke Donald is the number one ranked golfer in the world, and has secured two wins so far this year. Westwood, is one of, if not, the best player without a major, and won on the European Tour last weekend. Johnson won his first tournament of the year in, Memphis last weekend.

My darkhorse pick to win this tourney is Louis Oosthuizen. Louis finished second at the Masters this year. He is best known for his double eagle during the final round of that tournament. Other darkhorse candidates include; Adam Scott, Graeme McDowell(won this tourney in 2010), Jason Day(last years runner-up), and Nick Watney.  

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