Rory McIlroy Set For US Open Bid

Rory McIlroy goes into the 2014 US Open at Pinehurst Resort as the Betfair favourite to claim his third major championship and his second in this tournament.

The Northern Irishman has already tasted victory in 2014 as he was successful in the BMW PGA Championship last month at Wentworth. That win in England marked his first European Tour win since November 2012. It was also his first tournament since he officially announced to the public that he had split from his girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki.

Rory McIlroy will be hoping to join the elusive list that includes players that have all won the US Open on multiple occasions. The 7495-yard course is expected to suit his long-hitting game which will be tested this week in California.

European golfers have been successful in three of the last four runnings of the US Open. Justin Rose is the defending champion as he came out on top in 2013 at Merion Golf Club to reward Betfair backers.

Rose has yet to prevail so far in 2014 but he has had four top 10 finishes. In his latest outing, the Englishman missed the cut in the Memorial Tournament in Ohio.

Graeme McDowell was the other European to lift the US Open trophy in recent years. He won with a winning score of E in 2010 as conditions were tough at Pebble Beach four years ago.

World number one Adam Scott has finished in the top 10 off all the major championships but the US Open. The best the Australian has achieved is a tie for 15th which came in 2012.

Scott has been drawn to play with fellow major winners Bubba Watson and Charl Schwartzel on the opening two days of the tournament. The former Masters winner is the near the top of the outright for the event with Betfair.

Who will win the 112th US Open?

The golfing calendar is now brimming with professional golf tournaments every weekend of the year, it seems.  Though the four tournaments that matter above all else in men’s golf are the Majors; and it is every pro golfers dream to win one of the four most prestigious championships in the world.

The first of the Major Championships in 2012 was a classic, settled by a two-hole play-off when Bubba Watson beat South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen after an amazing approach shot found the green after a disastrous tee shot left him deep in the trees.

Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy were the favourites going into the US Masters though I had a sneaky feeling the long fairways were going to be perfect for Lee Westwood to win his first Major Championship. Neither Tiger or Rory were contenders, and Lee Westwood left himself short with some poor putting throughout the whole tournament.

The next of the four Majors will be the 112th US Open Championship in June, followed by The British Open (known simply as ‘The Open’) in July and lastly, the PGA Championship in the United States.

While Luke Donald, Rory McIlroy, Lee Westwood and Martin Kaymer continue to jostle to be ranked number 1 in the world, all eyes will be focussing on the US Open which this year will be held at The Olympic Club, Lake Course on 14-17 June.

Rory McIlroy and Tiger woods are once again favourites ahead of the US Open, with McIlroy looking to defend his title and Tiger Woods (2000, 2002, 2008) looking for a fourth victory to equal the current record held by Scotsman Willie Anderson (1901, 1903, 1904, 1905) and American legends Bobby Jones (1923, 1926, 1929, 1930), Ben Hogan (1948, 1950, 1951, 1953) and Jack Nicklaus (1962, 1967, 1972, 1980).

Current golf betting has Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods at 8/1 followed by Phil Mickelson 12/1, Lee Westwood 14/1 and Luke Donald 16/1 with Hunter Mahan, Martin Kaymer, Adam Scott, Matt Kuchar, Dustin Johnson, Louis Oosthuizen and Bubba Watson at 33/1.

I can’t help thinking, if only Lee Westwood could be step up with his short game, it would only be a matter of time before he wins his first Major.  But equally, you never know when the Tiger is going to return; and I am confident it is when and not if.


Rory McIlroy to dominate the future of golf

The 2011 US Open was won in spectacular fashion by Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy by eight strokes. He was the youngest winner for some 88 years but the youngest ever US Open Champion was John J. McDermott in 1911 at the tender age of 19.

Many commentators are suggesting that now Rory McIlroy has won his first major title he will dominate the future of golf for some years to come, filling the void left by Tiger Woods in the past couple of years following a recurring knee problem and a breakdown in his personal life.

McIlroy has got much to live up to if he is going to be as successful as Tiger Woods who has won three US Open titles in 2000, 2002 and most recently in 2008 when he was playing with the knee injury that subsequently had him miss the rest of the 2008 season.  Since his return Tiger Woods had failed to find his form and is now in danger of dropping out of the top 20 world ranking.

Rory McIlroy will need to win the US Open a further three times to equal the record of four wins jointly held by Willie Anderson, A-Robert T. Jones, Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus.  The latter being a mentor to the young Irishman over the past two years.

The next major championship in the golf calendar is the British Open which this year is being held at the Royal St George’s Golf Club in Sandwich, Kent.  So why not go online and buy a new set of golf clubs learn to play the shots the pros make look so simple.

You can buy the same golf clubs, balls and clothes as Rory McIlroy at Direct Golf.



Rory McIlroy Wins US Open

Yesterday Rory McIlroy won the US Open, his first Major victory with an amazing -16 and eight shot lead.

22 year old Rory McIlroy became the youngest player to win the US Open for 88 years and the first to lead at the end of all four rounds since Tiger Woods in 2002.  In doing so he will have wiped the memory and pain of his disaster at Augusta where he was in a similar position after three rounds, only the fall apart on the final day.

Though he is still only 22 years old, big things have been expected of Rory McIlroy since he turned pro in 2007 at the sprightly age of 17.  The weight of expectation was placed on his shoulders when Tiger Woods stated that McIlroy was the future of golf.  And though over the past four years he has come close, he has never been able to keep in the zone for four days solid; until now.

On completing his final round, 2010 US Open champion, fellow compatriot and close friend Graeme McDowell said Rory McIlroy was the best golfer he has ever seen.  Strong words coming from a man who has played with Tiger Woods on several occasions.

Rory McIlroy has now officially arrived on the world stage.  The US crowds love him and with a deflated Tiger Woods, the biggest sponsors in the world will be queuing up to have a piece of his fame.  But it could have been so different if he had cracked under the pressure, as he did at Augusta in the US Masters in April when he went into the final day with a four stroke lead and finished in joint 15th after a final round of 80. If the same choking capitulation had happened to Rory McIlroy yesterday at Congressional it may have had a lasting psychological effect.  That is something McIlroy had been working on among other things with golf legend Jack Nicklaus who has acted as a mentor to McIllroy over the past two years.

As it is, this morning Rory McIlroy wakes up to realise it wasn’t all a dream after winning his first Major championship and with it will no doubt be the favourite to win next month’s British Open Championship at Royal St. George’s in Sandwich, Kent.



Graeme McDowell is the first European golfer to win the US Open Golf Championship in 40 years

Graeme McDowell is the first European golfer to win the US Open Golf Championship in 40 years. He rightly said it was a “career defining” victory and one that will elevate him to a lofty world ranking.

Over the past few years the British contingent has become ever stronger with the likes of Ian Poulter, Padraig Harrington and Paul Casey leading the charge.  But as critics continue to place high accolades on Northern Ireland’s Rory McIllroy, no one mentioned the name of Northern Ireland’s quiet man, Graeme McDowell.

It was because Tiger Woods was returning from another injury that for the first time in many years Woods was not favourite to win the 2010 US Open, that mantle was placed on the shoulders of Americas’ favourite golfer, Phil Mickelson.

But Mickelson never really got going, and when Graeme McDowell lost the lead to Dustin Johnson going into the fourth and final round, and Tiger Woods had helped boost his chances with a fantastic round of 66 on the third day, I was erring towards another Tiger Woods grandstand finish.  But McDowell kept his nerve to win by one shot over Gregory Havret.  Ernie Els was third and after a late charge by Phil Mickelson, he tied with Tiger Woods in fourth place, three shots behind McDowell.

At just 30 years old, 2010 currently belongs to Graeme McDowell as his amazing US Open Golf Championship victory at Pebble Beach follows his victory in this month’s Wales Open at Celtic Manor.  Next up, the British Open at St. Andrews.