• Second major of the year gets underway this week
• Huge spotlight on Tiger Woods after Memorial showing
• Rory McIlroy the bookies' favourite to take the title
US OPEN | CHAMBERS BAY
With so many possible storylines ahead, it’s hard not to get excited about the 115th US Open, which begins on Thursday.
How much of a test will Chambers Bay prove to be? Can Tiger bounce back from Memorial? Will Phil complete a career grand slam in his 25th US Open? They’re just three things to look out for this week, and that’s without even mentioning world top two Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth!
The venue has split opinion among players in the weeks leading up to the event. Ian Poulter branded the Pacific Northwest course ‘a farce’ on Twitter and said recently he wouldn’t comment on it until after the tournament, while Mickelson said after his third-placed finish at the FedEx St Jude Classic that he ‘really likes the golf course’.
And although the course has received more attention than the players thus far, here are four who are sure to be in the spotlight this week.
The three-time US Open champion will be under immense pressure as he aims to recover from a disastrous performance at the Memorial Tournament where he carded an 85 to record the worst round of his professional career – the second time he’s done that this year.
Woods was present at Chambers Bay ahead of the Memorial, spending two full days in the Pacific Northwest testing out the course, which he later described as ‘very challenging’.
McIlroy became the youngest US Open champion since Bob Jones in 1923 when he won at Congressional in 2011 but heads into the second major of the year on the back of consecutive missed cuts at the BMW PGA Championship and the Irish Open.
The world No.1 put that down to fatigue after playing for five weeks in a row on both tours and remains the bookies’ favourite to claim his fifth major title.
Fresh from a third-placed finish at the Memorial Tournament, where he carded a seven-under-par final round of 65, Masters champion Spieth will be aiming to continue his tremendous form this season.
The 21-year-old has two wins, three runner-up finishes and the third at Muirfield Village in just 16 events, with only two missed cuts at the Farmers Insurance Open and the Players Championship.
Winner of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans in April, the 2013 US Open champion almost had his second PGA Tour win of the season at the Memorial but lost out in a breathtaking play-off to David Lingmerth.
This will be the 34-year-old’s tenth start at a US Open and despite winning in 2013, he has only broken 70 four times in his time at the tournament.
The US Open :: Who will win?
Will any of the above names win at Chambers Bay this week? Leave your thoughts in the ‘Comments’ section below.