USPGA Championship Preview : McIlroy Is The From Pick To Win His Third PGA
Event Venue: Quail Hollow Golf Club, Charlotte, North Carolina, Thursday August 10th at midday. Live on BBC1 and BBC2.See Stats
Rory McIlroy is a two-time course winner and has been backed into favouritism at 13/2 with bet365 for the USPGA Championship which he can win for the third time this bring and take his career tally to five majors. He recently sacked his long-term caddie and now has his best mate on the bag and that could work in his favour as the former world number one tries to win his first major championship in three years. You can back the selection or any other player using a bookmaker golf free bet.
McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Phil Mickelson are the players still genuine contenders for the big titles who can complete the career Grand Slam. Spieth only requires the PGA Championship to complete the set and if he wins this week will become the youngest player ever to win each of the four most prestigious titles each one. However, the host venue at Quail Hollow requires good driving and as we saw in the Open Championship that is not a major strength and he won’t have the same latitude this week.
Spieth (9/1 with Skybet) is a demon on the greens and often his putting negates the damage caused by waywardness off the tee. Quail Hollow puts a premium on accuracy over distance and Spieth could get found out if he misses too many fairways. It seems churlish to find fault with the Champion Golfer of the Year but driving may let him down this week and delay his inevitable completion of the career Grand Slam.
Mickelson, 66/1 with William Hill this week, is a US Open short of joining the elite group of five players with all the majors on their CV. McIlroy requires the Masters to become the sixth but that quest is on hold until next April and he’d taken any major right now. When he won the 2014 PGA Championship there was talk of him winning 10 majors or more but he’s drawn a blank since then in the weeks that matter most.
Major championship venues are announced several years in advance. McIlroy identified the 2015 Open at St Andrews and this year’s PGA as his best chances of adding to his tally. He missed the Open two years ago because of an injury sustained playing football with his mates so this week now has added significance in the context of his career. McIlroy has the best course form of the entire field.
He won the Wells Fargo Championship in 2010 and 2015 at Quail Hollow so he clearly has a game suited to the course. The course puts a premium on accuracy over distance but long and straight driving is important. At his best McIlroy is just about the best driver in the sport and tat forms the basis for the rest of his game.
McIlroy has played well without contending in the Open and at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational on his last two starts. The fairytale is for Spieth to win this week and go into the history books but the head says McIlroy is a worthy favourite and the most likely winner of the 2017 USPGA Championship.
RORY MCILROY has the course form, current form and skills’ profile to win the USPGA Championship.
- Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus have both won four titles.
- Rory McIlroy has won the USPGA Championship twice since 2012.
- Ten winners this century are US players and seven are from overseas.
- The average winning score over the last ten years is 11 under.
- In that spell there have been two Playoffs and two one shot wins.
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