The FedEx Cup Playoffs rumble on this week after Rory McIlroy produced a stunning display of grit and high class golf to win the Deutsche Bank Championship. The Monday finish of the Deutsche Bank means there is something of a mad dash for the top 70 in the FedEx Cup rankings to make it from Norton, Massachusetts to Carmel, Indiana and Crooked Stick Golf Club.
The Pete and Alice Dye-designed course has hosted this tournament before back in 2012 when Rory McIlroy won. McIlroy is the bookies’ favourite to win once more but will face an almighty battle to win in consecutive weeks as the 70-man field jostle for position to get themselves into the top 30 and the Tour Championship in a fortnight’s time.
Crooked Stick is the first course designed by the legendary Dyes and was opened in 1964. However, it is more than up for the challenge of hosting the world’s best golfers. At 7,516 yards, the par 72 layout is a very tough prospect off the tee. Not only will the players have to hit their driver far, they will have to be able to move it both ways as there are doglegs to the right and to the left and no two holes run in the same direction making the wind a real factor should it get up.
Rory Can Do the Double Again
When McIlroy won here in 2012 he came into the week off the back of a win at the Deutsche Bank also. The quick turnaround of these two events gives an even heightened sense of momentum to the already frantic pace of the FedEx Cup Playoffs which is something McIlroy can really use to his advantage.
It has been a frustrating year for the Northern Irishman who failed to win any of 2016’s majors, had serious issues with his putter and had to deal with the fallout from Nike’s decision to step away from club manufacturing. However, the Nike issues have allowed him to swap putter as he’s begun work with a new coach. Rory ranked top for one putts at TPC Boston and if he doesn’t get drained, there is no reason why he cannot win again at 6/1 with Sky Bet.
Louis Oosthuizen has got a lot of work to do to make sure of his place at the Tour Championship. He goes into this week ranked 40th in the FedEx Cup rankings but finished inside the top 10 at TPC Boston. Oosthuizen’s swing looked to be at its silky best last week and he will have no issues coping with the distance of Crooked Stick. The South African is a big event player who can step up to the plate this week so back him each way at 40/1 with Betfred.
Koepka to Just Do Enough
Brooks Koepka is just about hanging on to a spot in the top 30 but will need to play well at Crooked Stick to play in the Tour Championship. The big-hitting American certainly has the right mix of power and control which should see him go well in Indianapolis, so a top 10 bet looks good at 3/1 with Ladbrokes.