5 Outsiders to Follow at the PGA
This week's 100th PGA Championship is the final men's major on the calendar and is one last chance for a player to etch their name into history. Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas and Rory McIlroy are considered the big favourites at the rain-softened but lengthy Bellerive in St. Louis, a venue that saw Gary Player complete the career Grand Slam in 1965, and was the site of Nick Price's first major title in 1992.
Others will fancy the chances of twice U.S. Open winner Brooks Koepka, former PGA champion Jason Day, and the two Englishmen Justin Rose and Tommy Fleetwood. Jordan Spieth is hoping to clinch a career Grand Slam of his own, while Tiger Woods proved at Carnoustie that he was still a contender in the game's biggest championships, while Champion Golfer of the Year Francesco Molinari cannot be discounted during the summer of his life.
We have decided to take a look further down the field - at players with odds at or greater than 100/1 - to identify a potential surprise champion who could emerge through the pack and surprise the fancied runners.
The American made history when he won the PGA Championship in 2011 at Atlanta Athletic Club on his debut, and backed that up with a WGC Bridgestone Invitational title a year later. However, 32-year-old hasn't won since on the PGA Tour, at one stage dropping outside the world's top 100 in the aftermath of the anchored putting ban, but he has enjoyed something of a quiet resurgence, and recently finished fourth at the RBC Canadian Open. He also recorded top ten finishes at The Players Championship and Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines.
21-year-old Aaron Wise made a breakthrough when he clinched the Byron Nelson in May. Results had been disappointing since - he missed five consecutive cuts - but rolled back into form at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational, where he finished in sixth at Firestone, which should be a solid template for the challenge ahead at Bellerive. With his lack of experience, a victory here would seem unlikely, but this is an emerging American talent who could have a run for the Wanamaker.
Sensation at the Ryder Cup in 2016, the Belgian hasn't reached those heights since, but will be looking to make a late surge for Thomas Bjorn's side in Paris. The 26-year-old has shown recent positive form, however, with a top ten finish in the Scottish Open, and solid results throughout the Rolex Series and Open Championship. This big, soft course should suit his prodigious skills, and he is certainly due reminding us of what an exciting talent he can be.
The mercurial 25-year-old is a two-time winner on the PGA Tour - both at the FedEx St. Jude Classic - and was a strong performer at the U.S. Open in June, emerging into contention on a controversial Saturday, ultimately finishing in a tie for sixth, but remains a player awaiting his major breakthrough, which may come at Bellerive.
The former Masters champion has popped up on leaderboards this season, including a runner-up finish at The Players Championship, and his most recent competitive round - on Sunday at Firestone - was a 63. It's been seven years since his memorable triumph at Augusta National, but the South African would love to join his compatriot Gary Player on the Wanamaker Trophy.
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