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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

My "5 to Watch" at the Senior PGA

Hey, it's back-to-back majors for the Champions Tour... and this week, I'll try to pick potential winners who are actually in the field.

The major, of course, is the Senior PGA Championship. And Colin Montgomerie is going for a three-peat at the event, at the course where he won his first one in 2014 (Harbor Shores in Michigan).

Colin Montgomerie with the Senior PGA trophy

My "5 to Watch" for this major is greatly influenced by who was in form last week:
  • Coming off a win, it's hard not to pick Bernhard Langer as the favorite. But ironically, this is the only major that seems to elude Bernhard. Does that mean that he's not a favorite? I don't think so!
  • Last week I picked Woody Austin, who skipped the first major for his son's high school graduation. I'm okay with that -- Woody's priorities are in the right place, and I should have double-checked the field list. But I know for a fact that he's in the field THIS week, and he has three wins so far this year. Granted, he either wins or doesn't finish well at all, but three wins is hard to ignore.
  • Olin Browne hadn't played all that well this year until the Insperity, but now he has two Top5s in a row (he was runner-up last week). Got to like a man who seems to have hit his stride.
  • Kevin Sutherland is pretty far down the Charles Schwab Cup rankings (20) to have finished as consistently as he has this season, with six Top11s. But when you're that consistent, things should break your way eventually.
  • And my flier is Colin Montgomerie. How can the two-time defending champion be a flier, you ask? Out of nine starts, he has three Top6s... and nothing else better than T17 last week. And he's at 21 in the Schwab Cup, behind Kevin Sutherland. That's why.
So my pick to win is (drum roll, please)... Bernhard Langer. He hasn't finished worse than T11 in eight starts this season, and he's coming off that win at the Tradition. And if that wasn't enough, he was T3 when they played this course in 2014.

Sorry, Monty. I'm afraid the German's gonna take you down this time.

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