News

What to Watch for: Friday at the Players Championship

I can’t wait for the B-flight to end and the real tournament to begin. I mean, is this the would-be fifth major or a Fall Series scrum? Of the top 20 guys on the leaderboard only four have won major championships, and none in nearly five years. John Mallinger? Richard S. Johnson? Brad Adamonis? Seriously? If you’ve heard of any of these guys then you watch way, way too much Golf Channel.There are a few intriguing names near the top of the leaderboard, and I’m anxious to see how they back-up those promising opening rounds. Bubba Watson shook off his final-round disappointment of a few days ago and fired a 67 to put himself back in the thick of another tournament. He’s a momentum player so he may be able to ride this hot-streak for a while longer. Also, watch out for Retief Goosen. He shot a clean 67, building on what has quietly been a very successful season so far. Goose is probably the best in the world on super-fast greens, and the Stadium’s putting surfaces are only going to get more baked-out as the week goes on, so I expect him to be there 'til the bitter end.The real story of the second round will be tougher scoring conditions. There are 57 guys under par after the first round, aided by rain-softened greens and some surprisingly accessible pins. The Ponte Vedra pooh-bahs don’t like to see their golf course razed like that, so expect some suffering on Friday. I’m looking forward to it.

More From the Web
by Kevin Cunningham