Dave Tindall

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The Roundup: Tiger & Rory show

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Recap of the day


Morning wave: One story dominated the morning play. When Tiger Woods birdied his opening hole, the 10th, from just under 20 feet it seemed like a nice, positive start. But eight holes later, Woods had taken just 29 swishes, a nine-hole score he hadn’t shot since 2007! He birdied 10 too as ’59 watch’ started to spread around Twitter before the 14-time major winner ‘settled’ for an 8-under 62.


Afternoon wave: With wide fairways, lack of wind, soft greens and balls flying far in the hot conditions, Aronimink continued to be attacked (scoring average of just over 68) and Rory McIlroy was the next to challenge the 60 barrier. Six straight birdies took him to 9-under after 14 but two late bogeys ended the bid. He did, though, scribble a final birdie at 18 to tie Woods for T1. Last year’s Tour Championship winner Xander Schauffele came in with a 63.


Leaderboard: -8 Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, -7 Xander Schauffele, -6 Billy Horschel, Peter Uihlein, Justin Thomas, Alex Noren, -5 Ryan Armour, Byeong Hun An, Rickie Fowler, Aaron Wise.


Notables: -4 Hideki Matsuyama, Jon Rahm, Justin Rose, Henrik Stenson, -3 Jordan Spieth, Bryson DeChambeau, Jason Day, -2 Tony Finau, -1 Patrick Reed, Brooks Koepka, Paul Casey, Evs Dustin Johnson, Francesco Molinari, +1 Tommy Fleetwood, +3 Phil Mickelson.


Revised outright betting: 3/1 McIlroy, 7/2 Woods, 7/1 Thomas, 12/1 Schauffele, ,18/1 Fowler, 20/1 Noren, 22/1 Matsuyama, Rose, 25/1 Horschel, 28/1 Rahm, 33/1 DeChambeau, Spieth.



Friday weather forecast/tee-time alteration


Tee-times have been moved up due to the threat of inclement weather. It means the first 3-balls head out at 7am from both 1st and 10th tees. It’s cloudy conditions from the start and there’s a chance of rain around 10am while temperatures will be in the high 70s so far less oppressive than in round one. Winds are light at 6-7mph.



Leaders after 18 holes


Tiger Woods (62) – Wielding his trusty Scotty Cameron putter again, Woods’ outward 29 featured five one-putts. He ended the day ranked 6th for SG: Putting and 2nd for SG: Tee to Green. Vintage stuff from Tiger. Is this the week?!


Rory McIlroy (62) – A change to a softer golf ball helped give extra control, said Rory later. Missed just two greens in regulation and ranked 2nd in SG: Putting. McIlroy getting red-hot in the Playoffs is a story we’ve read before.


Xander Schauffele (63) – Still auditioning for the final Ryder Cup wildcard pick and this was another notable nudge to Jim Furyk. Eight birdies and ranked 4th in SG: Tee to Green.



Fate of the favorites


Dustin Johnson (70) – Scoring was low all day but DJ missed the party, ending the day in T49. Negative numbers across the board and was subdued throughout after three bogeys on his front nine.


Justin Rose (66) – A former winner at Aronimink (2010) and enjoyed his return with five birdies against a single bogey. Last week’s runner-up was average with the putter (35th of 70) so has scope to go lower.


Brooks Koepka (69) – Probably just biding his time until East Lake when the adrenaline will really kick in. Started birdie-birdie but had just one more par breaker after that and dropped shots at 10 and 12. Hit 15 greens but putter cool.





Tiger Woods (62): “I putted well today. I made a lot of putts. I’ve been hitting it good enough to shoot low scores, I just haven’t made putts and today I did right from the very get-go.”


Rory McIlroy (62): “You’re not going to get many chances to shoot sub-60 and today I had a chance to take advantage of it. But I won’t dwell on that too much, it was still a really good round of golf. I’m very happy with how I played and it sets me up great for the rest of the week.”


Rickie Fowler (65): On his return to action after an injured oblique - “I felt really good out there today. I didn’t have anything pop up or any tightness or any soreness. It probably isn’t 100% healed yet but feels good and feels like I’m in a good spot. Definitely need to listen to my body and be careful but off to a good start.”



Road to victory in the BMW


2017 Marc Leishman R1: 1st, R2: 1st, R3: 1st

2016 Dustin Johnson – R1: 3rd, R2: 1st, R3: 1st

2015 Jason Day – R1: 1st, R2: 1st, R3: 1st

2014 Billy Horschel – R1: 4th, R2: 3rd, R3: 1st

2013 Zach Johnson – R1: 2nd, R2: 3rd, R3: 4th


Notes: The tournament may have moved around but the patterns are strong and established. The last seven winners were no worse than fourth after any round on their road to victory. In fact, since it became the third play-off event with a field of 70, none of the 11 winners were outside the top seven after any round. So, if that plays out again, we’ve already cut the field down to the following: Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele, Billy Horschel, Peter Uihlein, Justin Thomas and Alex Noren.



Fate of the 18-hole leaders at the BMW Championship – where did they finish?


2017 Marc Leishman – 1st

2016 Roberto Castro – 3rd

2015 Jason Day – 1st

2014 Rory McIlroy – 8th, Jordan Spieth – 8th, Gary Woodland – 23rd

2013 Brandt Snedeker – 8th


Notes: Two of the last three R1 leaders have gone on to lift the trophy. Both were Aussies and both did it at Conway Farms. In 2014 at Cherry Hills it was a very different story as McIlroy, Spieth and Woodland all failed to cash in on excellent starts. In the last PGA TOUR event to be held at Aronimink, the 2011 AT&T National, Adam Scott and Hunter Haas shared the first-round lead with 66s. Scott went on to finish third but Haas crashed to 51st.



Focus on – The FedExCup


Only the top 30 in the rankings will progress to the season-ending TOUR Championship in two weeks’ time. Current projected rankings and movements are listed below:


Projected Top 5 after R1


Bryson DeChambeau

Justin Thomas

Justin Rose

Rory McIlroy

Tiger Woods


On the up - moved from outside to inside the top 30 today


Xander Schauffele – 41st to projected 15th

Alex Noren – 50th to projected 26th


Going down - moved from inside to outside the top 30 today


Emiliano Grillo – 29th to projected 32nd

Marc Leishman – 22nd to projected 31st


On the number


Kevin Na – projected 30th



Focus on – FedExCup form


One strong stat this week is that 10 of the 11 winners of the BMW had posted a top ten in one of the first two play-off events. A total of 18 players had met that requirement ahead of this week. If we combine that trend with the stat that every winner of this tournament was no worse than seventh after any round, we have just two players who tick both. Yes, folks, your winner this week is either Justin Thomas (currently T4, T8 at Northern Trust) or Billy Horschel (currently T4, T3 Northern Trust). They’re 7/1 and 25/1 heading into round two.

Dave Tindall is former golf editor at Sky in the UK and has been writing betting previews for the European Tour since 1997. He can be reached via e-mail on and on Twitter @davetindallgolf.
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