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Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Twofer Tuesday: Charles Schwab Challenge

Twofer Tuesday leaves the monstrous footprint of Kiawah Island for the more modest track of Colonial Country Club and the Charles Schwab Challenge.

Defending champion Daniel Berger

Colonial CC may be shorter than the Ocean Course but players will still have to deal with gusty winds -- at least, they will for part of the week. Granted, that didn't deter Daniel Berger from winning last year's playing, which was rescheduled for mid-June in order to get the PGA Tour season back underway after the pandemic forced everything to close down for a few months.

Will Daniel carry that mojo into this year's event? Well, it's possible because Colonial isn't exactly kind to first-time winners. (Sergio was the last first-timer, way back in 2001.) Hogan's Alley may not be kind to first-timers but it's a good friend to skilled ballstrikers, so that's something to look for in this week's ultimate winner.

With that in mind, my picks may or may not be likely winners. But given my record over the past few weeks, what have I got to lose?

  • My first pick is Abraham Ancer, who would need to break that first-timer jinx. But Ancer is definitely a ballstriker and he's been playing extremely well this season. He's due... and if Phil Mickelson can tame mighty Kiawah, Ancer should be a natural for Hogan's Alley.
  • And my other pick is Jordan Spieth. Last week has to be an aberration, given his play over the last few months. And given his play at Colonial over the years -- a win and two T2s -- this should be a great spot for him to get back on track.

GC's coverage starts Thursday at 4pm ET. There will definitely be a buzz at this event since Phil is teeing it up again before taking a couple of weeks to prepare for the US Open at Torrey Pines. And since Phil has two wins at this event, it's not out of the question that he might add a third. But whatever happens, following close on the heels of a historic performance that continues a season of surprise winners, you have to believe that Hogan's Alley might have a surprise or two in store for us.

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