2012 US Golf Open: will Aussies end six-year wait?
The 112th US Golf Open will get underway on Friday morning from the The Olympic Club in San Francisco, and a contingent of nine Australians will tee up hoping to emulate Geoff Ogilvy’s 2006 US Open victory.
That was the last time an Australian won a major championship.
Let’s look at the top four Australians in the field by ranking.
He will struggle to challenge the top guys this week. Although he is the Australian favourite with bookmakers, his recent form suggests otherwise. After a solid top 10 at the Masters, Scott took five weeks off tournaments and returned at the Players Championship, where he was in contention but fell away late in round three to finish in a tie for 15th.
Since then the 31 year old has only managed a tie for 46th at the recent Memorial Tournament, and missed the cut at the Byron Nelson two weeks earlier.
Verdict: Look for Scott to make the cut, but he will struggle to be inside the top 30.
The 2006 winner hasn’t challenged the leaders so far in 2012. A season best T12 at the Players Championship has been the only highlight for Ogilvy, who finished in a tie for 19th at the Crowne Plaza tournament three weeks ago. Most recently the 35 year old shot one over par at the Memorial Tournament to finish in 58th place.
Verdict: A top 25 finish is on the cards for Ogilvy, who has excelled this year in the majors with a top 20 finish at The Masters and the same at the ‘unofficial fifth major’, The Players Championship.
2012 has been and up and down year for Day, who has struggled with injuries. The 24 year old was forced to withdraw after round one at the Masters with a foot injury, and after a month layoff returned for a top 10 finish at the Wells Fargo Championship. Since then Day has missed two cuts, but managed a top 10 finish between them at the Byron Nelson Championship.
Verdict: Day has said that if his wife goes into labour at any stage during the week, he will withdraw from the tournament even if he is leading. Day could be the dark horse this week, but one must consider whether he will be in the right headspace with his wife expecting.
Baddeley will be Australia’s most in-form golfer heading into the US Open. After missing three cuts earlier in the season, the 31 year old finished in a tie for ninth at the Memorial Tournament just two weeks ago, and is happy with his game coming into the US Open.
Verdict: Baddeley brings the form into the US Open and I expect him to be the best placed Aussie but I can’t see him breaking inside the top five on the leaderboard come Sunday evening in California.
Where to look
Lee Westwood should claim his first major trophy this week. The Englishman won on the European Tour last week and is full of confidence heading into the US Open. He also seems to save his best for the Major Tournaments, with four finishes in the top three, and one in the top 10, in his last seven majors.
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