No Tiger Woods. No Justin Rose. No Rory McIlroy. Heck, no Phil Mickelson. So why should you pay any attention to this week’s AT&T National? Because there are still quality players playing at a championship course, so it should be fun to watch.
Here are the three groupings to keep an eye on:
7:27am on #10: Rickie Fowler, Jim Furyk, Angel Cabrera. Fowler is definitely the weakest of the three but is still a force to be reckoned with. He hasn’t finished outside the top 13 in his last two tournaments, including a T13 finish at the U.S. Open. The second of the group is Jim Furyk. He is a major champion, winning in 2003 at the U.S. Open. Even though he hasn’t played well recently, he’s still a great player and should definitely be in the mix on Sunday. Last but certainly not least is the Masters runner-up Angel Cabrera. He also had a top ten at last week’s Travelers Championship. This threesome is full of fan favorites and tournament contenders.
12:27pm on #1: Adam Scott, Marc Leishman, Jason Day. Aka “The Australian Threesome”. Adam Scott won the Masters this year and should’ve won the British Open last year if it wasn’t for a +4 finish on the final four holes. He also has four more top 20 finishes and two other top tens. Leishman is the least well-known, but does have four top 10 finishes in 2013. He had a stretch from mid-April through mid-May in which he didn’t finish outside the top 12. He finished T4 in the Masters, so watch out for this Australian. Lastly, Day who seems to be in every major but never win one. This year is a perfect example as he finished third at the Masters and second at the U.S. Open. Most players would be disheartened by this, but Day enjoys being in the mix and should not surprise anyone if he comes out on top this week.
12:39pm on #1: Brandt Snedeker, Hunter Mahan, K.J. Choi. Snedeker got off to a hot start in 2013, but due to injury hasn’t continued the early success. Since February, he’s had four missed cuts but also has two top 10’s and a T17 at the U.S. Open. Sneds led at last year’s British Open and has been in both majors this year so he’s a hot pick at Congressional. Mahan almost pulled off a U.S. Open victory, but finished three strokes behind Rose at +5. He takes that momentum into this week where he finished T8 last year. Choi is another who seems to compete in every major. He only has two top ten finishes this year, but knows what it takes to be there on Sunday.
So even though some of the top players aren’t in the field this week, the AT&T National is still stacked with young and veteran talent that should make for an interesting weekend in Bethseda, MD.
It all begins bright and early, 6:30am Thursday, at the 2011 U.S. Open venue, Congressional Country Club.