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5 Players to Watch on the BMW PGA Championship


Fresh off his comeback on Aug. 28 on the Tour Championship in Georgia, Rory McIlroy is a top contender on the BMW PGA Championship, which begins Thursday on the Wentworth Club in Surrey, England.

McIlroy captured his third FedEx Cup title by completing the biggest final-round comeback within the history of the Tour Championship. He will probably be a compelling figure at Wentworth, but listed here are five other players to look at.

Ireland’s Lowry has proved that the course suits him well. In his last five appearances at Wentworth, he has finished no worse than a tie for seventeenth. His best showing was ending second to McIlroy in 2014.

Lowry, 35, would have qualified for his first appearance on the Tour Championship if either Adam Scott or Aaron Smart had made a bogey on the 72nd hole on the BMW Championship on Aug. 21 in Delaware, but each made clutch pars to secure the ultimate two spots.

Lowry shot a 68 on Sunday on the BMW to complete in a tie for twelfth but three-putted from about 65 feet for a bogey at No. 17. Ranked No. 23, Lowry has not won an event since he captured the 2019 British Open at Royal Portrush Golf Club in Northern Ireland.

Rose, 42, also hasn’t won since 2019 on the Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego. Once as high as No. 1 within the rankings, Rose, the 2013 U.S. Open champion, now stands at No. 58.

In 18 PGA Tour events this season, he has recorded only two top-10 finishes, and his best finish was a tie for fourth on the RBC Canadian Open in June when he flirted with becoming the primary European to shoot 59 on the PGA Tour. He ended up with a 60.

His performance within the majors has been disappointing. He missed the cut within the Masters, tied for thirteenth within the P.G.A. Championship, tied for thirty seventh within the U.S. Open and was unable to compete within the British Open with a nasty back.

But Rose has experienced some success at Wentworth. He finished second in 2007 and 2012. Last yr, he tied for sixth.

Just like Lowry and Rose, Molinari, 39, has had his moments on this event. In 2018, shooting a final-round 68, he won the BMW PGA Championship by two shots over McIlroy. He has recorded six top-10 finishes at Wentworth since 2012.

In July 2018, Molinari captured the Quicken Loans National in Maryland by eight shots, closing with a 62, and three weeks later he won the British Open in Carnoustie, Scotland, by two shots, becoming the primary Italian player to win a serious.

He missed a likelihood to win one other major in 2019, when up by two on the Masters he found the water together with his tee shot at No. 12 in the ultimate round, which led to a double bogey. He finished in a tie for fifth.

On this past season, he recorded just one top-10 finish in 17 appearances on the PGA Tour, missing the cut on the Masters and the U.S. Open. He tied for fifteenth within the British Open.

Horschel, who won the BMW last yr, picked up his seventh PGA Tour victory in early June on the Memorial Tournament in Ohio, beating Smart by 4 strokes. He shot a 65 within the third round that put him up by five, and he finished the ultimate round with an even-par 72.

Horschel, 35, became only the second American to win the BMW. The primary was Arnold Palmer in 1975, when the tournament was referred to as the Penfold PGA Championship. Horschel, now ranked No. 15, secured the win with an approach shot on No. 18 that got here to a rest lower than two feet from the cup. He converted the putt to complete with a 65 and a one-shot victory.

Westwood, 49, is considered one of greater than a dozen players on this week’s field from LIV Golf, the brand new series financed by Saudi Arabia.

Ranked No. 100, his best finish on the PGA Tour this season was a tie for 14th on the Masters. He missed the cut within the P.G.A. Championship and tied for thirty fourth on the British Open.

Westwood, a former world No. 1, has never won the BMW, although he got here close in 2011, losing in a playoff to Luke Donald. Last yr, Westwood finished in a tie for 71st. He said he planned to play 4 DP World Tour events in 2023.

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