Preview – PGA Tour – Wells Fargo Championship – Quail Hollow Club – Charlotte, North Carolina –
Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Adam Scott and Phil Mickelson provide the firepower this week as the PGA Tour returns to Quail Hollow Club for the Wells Fargo Championship.
The full-field tournament served as a final tune-up for the THE PLAYERS Championship next week and features the return of 17-time PGA Tour winner Jim Furyk.
Furyk, out for several months with surgery, finished 2015 calendar year at 9th in the Official World Golf Rankings. He is currently No. 25 as he returns to Quail Hollow, a place where he won in 2006 and has been twice a runner-up including 2014.
Quail Hollow, measuring more than 7,500 yards, should test the world’s best players, especially when trying to find the right spot on the Bermuda greens.
Traditionally a difficult course to drive the ball off the tee with pine tree trouble lurking, Quail Hollow typically comes down to work around the greens and approach shots. Putting and scrambling should determine the champion at the Tom Fazio designed par-72 layout. It challenges players into greens increasing proximity to the hole.
Look for “The Green Mile” – holes 16-17-18— to make the difference down the stretch. NBC Sports and Golf Channel share television coverage this week.
- McIlroy (21-under) set the tournament record with his week, which featured a third round 61. He ran away with the victory winning by seven shots. Patrick Rodgers and Webb Simpson tied for second, while Gary Woodland, Robert Streb and Mickelson finished T-4. Top 10s were logged by Justin Thomas, Jason Bohn, Brendan Steele, Kevin Streelman and Shawn Stefani.
FANTASY: Horses for Courses showcase a play for McIlroy in this spot, although he hasn’t been in right form. Rory has five Top 10s in his six Quail Hollow starts. Take
Mickelson, who has six Top 5s in 12 starts here. Start Daniel Berger on your fantasy team. Berger’s young and hunger is showing with four Top 20s in his last five overall starts. J.B. Holmes is a fit here with six Top 15s in his last eight worldwide starts.
BETTING: McIlroy (4-to-1) is the outright betting favorite at www.golfodds.com and he is due for a victory. He is winless in 2016. Consider better payoffs with plays on Holmes (25-1) and Phil (25-1). Both play well here. Take Jamie Lovemark, just in case this is his week. Lovemark, a playoff loser on Monday, comes in at 50-1. Also, play the Hollywood Comeback Story with Furyk at 80-1.
Golf Channel and CBS Sports have the television coverage this week.
Other Golf News:
- Brian Stuard’s playoff win at the Zurich Classic Monday moved him from 513th to 143rd in the world rankings. Two in a row? Stuard opened the week as a 150-1 long shot this week in North Carolina. He is the 11th first-time winner on the PGA Tour in the 2015-2016 season.
- The European Tour hosts the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco this week. Alexander Levy is the betting favorite at skybet.com at 12-1 odds. Richie Ramsay is the defending champion.
- Stacy Lewis, looking for her first win in more than a year, is the betting favorite this week at the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic in Alabama. She has home-state advantage, but almost mounting pressure to close out a victory. She opened as a co-favorite with Brooke Henderson at 9-1 odds.
- John Daly makes his PGA Tour Champions debut this week at the Insperity Invitational at Woodlands Country Club in Texas. Ian Woosnam is the defending champion. Tom Lehman, who has two runner-up finishes at the event, is the 8-1 betting favorite.