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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Twofer Tuesday: Zurich Classic

It's my first attempt at picking a team competition for Twofer Tuesday! This week the Tour heads to New Orleans for the Zurich Classic.

Defending Zurich champs Billy Horschel and Scott Piercy

In case you need a reminder, this week we have two-man teams playing two days of fourball and two days of alternate shot. After two rounds, the 35 best teams make the cut. It's stroke play, not match play, and the team with the lowest score after 72 holes wins.

The event is played at TPC Louisiana, a par-72 Pete Dye layout that tops out at 7425 yards. The Bermuda rough will be just under two inches and the smallish Bermuda greens (overseeded for this time of year) have some serious contours. This, added to the wide-open fairways, makes this an excellent course for team competition.

The defending champs are Billy Horschel and Scott Piercy, but why would I go with the defending champs? This is Twofer Tuesday! But seriously, for some reason my picks seemed clear to me from the outset, so let's get down to it.
  • My Top10 pick is the team of Henrik Stenson and Graeme McDowell. The fact that these two are Ryder Cup teammates seems a natural pairing -- but so does the pairing of Sergio and Tommy Fleetwood. Why go with Henrik and Graeme? Simply because Graeme -- who is coming off a win just a month ago -- is playing for something. He wants an exemption into the Open Championship at Royal Portrush, and I believe Henrik is on board for that. Two great teammates playing for a common goal that's bigger than the event? I like that pairing.
  • And my pick to win is the team of Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown. These two have played together in both of the previous editions of this team play event -- they lost the first in a playoff and had the 54-hole lead last year before fading to T15. I can't help but feel that they're due. And with Kiz coming off the WGC-Match Play win, he's definitely on fire this year.
Again, both teams seem like no-brainers to me. That may be a bad sign, given my record over the last few weeks, but I still like my picks.

If you're interested in who is on whose team, here's the page with the teams. And if you're playing fantasy golf, here are the power rankings.

GC coverage starts Thursday at 2pm ET. I love team events!

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