USPGA Championship – Who Can Tame Southern Hills To Land The Win?

Back in 2007, Tiger Woods claimed his fourth and most recent USPGA Championship victory at Southern Hills.

This week, Tiger may well be prowling the links again after his last appearance at the Masters back in April saw him finish 47th, after making the cut relatively smoothly.

Woods had stated that he was not sure he would be able to play in the 2022 USPGA Championship this month, but after a practice round on the course on April 28, plus another nine-holes on Sunday alongside Gary Woodland, it looks very much like Woods will be teeing it off in the tournament.

However, the fact he is, reportedly, in much better shape than he was at Augusta, combined with the fact that the tournament is returning to a venue where he has already enjoyed success in the tournament, does seem to have swung the odds in favour if Tiger returning.

It is likely that Woods will confirm his participation in the event, or not, on Tuesday when he is scheduled to face the press before the tournament begins.

However, there are many exciting subplots and twists and turns in store for what is the second Major of the year and along with odds provided by bet365 Sport, we are going to take a closer look at them here.

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Southern Hills – Course Preview

US PGA 2022 golf

The venue for this year’s USPGA Championship is Southern Hills, located in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

The venue last hosted the event in 2007 and in the 15 years since, the course has undergone a number of redesigns on several holes, making sure that the 2022 version is ready to test the finest group of golfers in the world.

Designed by Perry Maxwell in 1936, the course redesign was overseen by Gil Hanse throughout 2018 and 2019 and has seen the course length increased considerably from 7,131 yards at the 2007 USPGA Tournament, to 7,481 yards for this year’s event.

The course has hosted three US Open Championships, the last in 2001, as well as four USPGA Championship events.

In terms of signature holes, the 10th, 12th and 18th should provide plenty of drama, but what makes the course very interesting is that given how many holes dog leg right or left, it is very much a course which favours players who are strong on their approach shots.

In addition, the ability to be creative around the green to get the ball as close to the pin, or in at least the most likely position to two-putt the hole, is going to be a big advantage.

The course will be a par 70 for the tournament (slightly lower than the par 71, which is standard for members and other golfers).

One of the key aspects of the remodel in 2019, was work on the greens, which have been expanded in size, but also have removed the rough around the greens, which means that any shot not hit with too much pace or not enough spin, can and will roll off the green and down the banking.

Southern Hills is going to be a real test for all the golfers in the field this week, so let’s take a look at who will be competing in the event.

The Greatest USPGA Championship Players

Bet on Golf at Bet365

Walter Hagen and Jack Nicklaus are the most successful players in the tournament’s 104-year history, winning five times apiece.

Tiger Woods is second on the all-time list with four wins, ahead of Sam Snead and Gene Sarazen.

A significant number of players have two wins including the missing current champion Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy, Brooks Kopka plus famous names from the past including Gary Player, Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson, Ray Floyd and Lee Trevino.

Out of 103 previous winners, 85 have hailed from the United States, five from Australia, two each from England, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Fiji and Northern Ireland, while there has been just one winner from the Republic of Ireland, South Korea and Germany.

2022 USPGA Championship – Competitors

Unlike the other Majors, where amateur players can earn a shot to play alongside the top professionals, the USPGA Championship is the only major that does not allow amateur players to compete.

For many, this means the USPGA is the ‘purest’ tournament, a phrase which I don’t really like much, in that it only attracts the top professional talent.

Scottie Scheffler is the top ranked player in the world and he will be one of the most backed golfers this week along with the likes of Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa, Jordan Spieth, Patrick Cantlay, Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffele and in-form Cameron Smith.

There’s no doubt that Tiger Woods potential appearance in the event has elevated interest both in the tournament and also in Woods’ chances of winning. However, there has also been equal clamour over whether Phil Mickelson would play and Mickelson has already confirmed that he won’t be competing in this event.

One of the perks of winning the USPGA Championship is that you receive an invite to the tournament for life and there are a number of players who will take advantage of that privilege afforded to previous winners with the likes of John Daly (1991), Rich Beem (2002), Padraig Harrington (2008), Y.E.Yang (2009), Martin Kaymer (2010) and Jason Dufner (2013) all set to compete this week.

Add to that the usual smattering of superstars from the world of golf, with a strong representation from Europe and America notably, and you have all the ingredients for a top-notch tournament.

The action starts on Thursday 18th February, so who would we back for our pre-tournament bets in this tournament?

USPGA Championship 2022 – Tournament Tips

Golf Course BetStars

It’s generally rare for a player to win two Majors in a single calendar year, but the form Scottie Scheffler is in means that he is the 11/1 favourite to land back to back Major wins after his Masters success last month.

Jon Rahm is 12/1, Rory McIlroy at 14/1, with Justin Thomas a 16/1 shot.

Looking at how the course is set up, I do feel that it is players that have exquisite control on their approach shots or from around the green that are more likely to do well here and for me that means the likes of Will Zalatoris, Viktor Hovland, Justin Thomas, Hideki Matsuyama, Collin Morikawa and Tom Hoge should do well.

However, I feel the man to back this week could well be Shane Lowry. He’s in very good form, he is a past Major winner and he ranks 4th in approach shots but it is his ability around the green which may well stand him in great stead here.

Lowry is 33/1 to land the win but I think he is excellent value.

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