This week sees the biggest tournament of the 2014 season so far. The World Golf Championship (WGC) series consists of four events that run in Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, and are thought of as one-tier down from the majors. These are extremely lucrative events, and in a Ryder Cup year, they can really help players to gain many valuable qualification points.
The upcoming event is also a rare format and one that provides true head to head competition. The WGC Accenture Matchplay is one of my favourite tournaments to watch. My article this week features my insight for who I think will perform well. It’s early days in the season, so many players haven’t built up momentum yet. I will however endeavor to pick the eventual winner.
There are some notable absentees this week though. Messrs Woods, Mickelson and Scott will be skipping the tournament this week for various reasons. I don’t think this will detract from it at all though. There are four brackets and I will attempt to predict the four bracket winners and eventual winner.
The Bobby Jones bracket is where I will start and although there are some big names there I can only see one winner here. It is the outstanding man from last season Henrik Stenson. I cannot see past him here. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that I think Jaidee may be a dark horse in this group too. You also need to look out for Jason Day.
The Gary Player portion of the tournament has 2013 US Open Champion Justin Rose as it’s number one. I see the ice-cool Jason Dufner as the winner of this bracket though. Rose is a phenomenal matchplay golfer, he showed us that at Medinah (remember that America?), but I think it’s a bit early in the season for him yet. My wildcard here is Stephen Gallacher, not because he’s Scottish no. He has a chance to play in a home Ryder Cup and I see him taking a scalp from Ernie Els in the first match. Look out for Jordan Spieth too.
Rory McIlroy leads The Ben Hogan quarter. Northern Ireland’s favourite son has started 2014 hotter than many and will be full of confidence going into this week. Many are tipping him to be the eventual winner too. Other than McIlroy, I think Charl Schwartzel and Ian Poulter are worth a look.
The Sam Snead bracket is the final grouping of players. I think this is the widest open too. Zach Johnson is the number one seed and probably rightly so, he’s a solid golfer and not one to ignore this week. I’d expect a challenge from Bubba after his win last week as well as Martin Kaymer and G-Mac.
As you can see, I’ve listed half of the field as I’m seriously hedging my bets. I’m going to say that either Stenson or McIlroy will win. Either way it’s always nice to watch matchplay golf. Enjoy!
Photo Credit to golf-zone.com