US PGA Championship Preview - The Gambling Times

US PGA Championship Preview

The second major of the golf season takes place this week as the US PGA Championship gets underway at the famed Bethpage Black course.

The 2019 hosting of the PGA is an historic event, as it lines up as the second major of the golfing calendar for the first time.

A rejig of the golfs world order has seen the PGA – the only all professional major – moved from its August slot to May – meaning it now slots in between the Masters and US Open, also meaning from April to July, there is now a golfing major every month

The major talking point is again Tiger Woods after he returned to winning ways at a major after his success at The Masters last month.

Woods is again one of the favourites, and Bethpage is a place he knows and likes, having won one of his US Open titles at the course.

He has prepared for the PGA by not playing another tournament since winning at Augusta. His victory in Georgia was his 15th major title and he admits his next target is the 18 of Jack Nicklaus.

“I always thought it was possible, if I had everything go my way. It took [Nicklaus] an entire career to get to 18, so now that I’ve had another extension to my career, one that I didn’t think I had a couple of years ago, if I do things correctly and everything falls my way, yeah, it’s a possibility,” he said.

The other major talking point is whether Jordan Spieth could become only the sixth golfer of all time to claim a career Grand Slam – winning all four majors.

Nobody has achieved the feat since Woods in 2000, and Rory McIroy missed the chance to complete the set at Augusta.

As it stands that means only Spieth and Mickelson are left needing one, and Spieth admits he would love to complete the Grand Slam at Bethpage, and get one over on Mickelson.

Mickelson will go into next month’s U.S. Open at Pebble Beach have already won at that course earlier this season at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

“It would be pretty cool bragging rights to try to complete the Slam before Phil,” Spieth said. “Not many people get bragging rights on Phil Mickelson. It would be pretty awesome to do.”

US PGA CHAMPIONSHIP

  • Bethpage Black Course, Georgia
  • First staged in 1916
  • Current champion is Brooks Koepka

OVERVIEW: The moving of the US PGA looks to be a master-stoke, and the anticipation is a great as anyone can remember.

Brooks Koepka is the defending champion and is one of the favourites to retain his crown, along with world number one Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods.

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The pro’s point of view…

Our resident golf expert is Cliff Jackson. Cliff is a leading youth coach and PGA professional at the famed Seaton Carew Links – one of the oldest courses in the world.

Am really pleased to see the US PGA moving, it looks a great slot for it and to have it at Bethpage Black, what is not to like?

Of the favourites, I think Tiger Woods will go well, but after having a month off, I am not sure he will be able to pick it up again and I can see Brooks Koepka putting up a fabulous defence and it would not surprise me to see him come away with the Wanamaker Trophy again.

Looking at the British invasion and I think that Ian Poulter looks a good price, I think he will enjoy Bethpage and he could very well be in the running come Sunday.

However, the one player I will really be cheering on is Jordan Spieth – a golfing Grand Slam is a historical, and to see him achieve that would be phenomenal.

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