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5 Players to Watch at The AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am

By: | Mon 31 Jan 2022 | Comments


It may be a new month but the PGA Tour will be remaining in California as the players prepare for the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

A notable event on the seasonal calendar, the competition is held across three courses: Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill Golf Course and Monterey Peninsula Country Club.

American entertainer Bing Crosby hosted the first National Pro-Am Golf Championship in 1937 at Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club.

After World War II had concluded, the 54-hole event moved up the coast near Monterey, where it has remained since.

However, since 2010 the three golf courses that are utilised for this tournament have remained the same.

This event attracts talented golfers and high-profile celebrities, where 156 professionals and 156 amateurs make up the field for the first three rounds.

During the opening three days, all 156 two-man teams will play a better ball format and the professionals an individual stroke play format until each team has completed a full round on all three courses.

The cut will take place after 54 holes and 60 professionals will progress to the final round with 25 two-man teams joining them.

This year will actually mark the return of amateur involvement, as the 2021 event featured no amateurs due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Five to Shine

Now that we have covered the history of the competition, it’s time to get stuck into five players who have the potential to fare well on the Californian coast.

If we reflect on last year, Daniel Berger’s dramatic 65 during the final round helped to snatch victory away from the likes of Jordan Spieth and Patrick Cantlay, who had otherwise dominated the previous three days.

Cantlay started his tournament in tremendous fashion, posting 62 on the first day to open up a healthy lead.

Unfortunately for the Californian, three successive rounds in the 70s dampened his hopes for his first title of last season - although he did go on to record four in total!

For Spieth, two fantastic rounds of 65 and 67 failed to ignite the weekend engine, as two outings in the 70s ensured he would not win this event for the second time (2017).

Paul Casey finished T5th and four shots off the pace last year, as he put together a string of impressive performances that included only one round in the seventies (third-round, 71).

Due to the event’s pedigree, we can expect an exciting field to entertain us in the Californian winter sun and here are just a few who are scheduled to tee it up: Berger, Cantlay, Spieth, Stewart Cink, Jason Day, Luke Donald, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Russell Knox, Min Woo Lee, Justin Rose and Dylan Wu - a player who has been touted for immense success.

Despite many alluring names, we have decided to pinpoint five characters who can demonstrate why there is so much hype around their game. 

(EDITOR'S NOTE: DANIEL BERGER WITHDREW ON WEDNESDAY NIGHT DUE TO BACK INJURY)

Patrick Cantlay

Patrick Cantlay experienced the form of his life during last season, and although he may be win-less this term, his peerless form has continued. If we’re being honest, his scintillating form can be dated back to June 2021. From there, he would win the Memorial Tournament for a second time, the BMW Championship and triumph at the end-of-season Tour Championship - and that’s without taking into account his huge contribution to team USA’s victory at the latest Ryder Cup.

Cantlay’s third round at The American Express concluded with a score of 72, and that was the first time he carded a score in the seventies for nearly five months. Five months. This equates to 21 successive rounds all in the sixties so you’ll have to excuse us for tipping the most obvious choice of the entire field! With four PGA Tour wins secured across the last 16 months, Cantlay’s season of vast success looks likely to extend a further 12 months, if not more.

Did you know: Cantlay’s streak of 21 rounds in the sixties is the longest since records began 40 years ago.

Daniel Berger

We know, we know. We have started this list with two players who are currently residing within the world’s top 20. However, these players aren’t just good: they’re effortlessly perfect at times. Daniel Berger recorded his first PGA Tour victory in 2016 at the FedEx St. Jude Classic but he would have to wait a year before his second triumph, where he successfully defended his title one day before the year anniversary. Despite his previous success, that took place over four years, the year of 2021 helped propel the American into golf’s elite - which was rewarded with a Ryder Cup debut.

There’s so much to like about Berger’s game and his unique swing only adds to the intrigue. Considering he has won around here, you’d expect him to arrive with an abundance of confidence, having bested iconic names during last year’s edition. Pebble Beach, where two of the four rounds will be conducted at providing the professionals progress from the 54-hole cut, traditionally boasts smaller greens. Berger locates 75% of Greens in Regulation, which will greatly assist him. That ranks him at 18th on Tour this season but as we all know, if you find the fairway then scoring opportunities are seriously augmented. Well, Berger currently has the best driving accuracy on Tour (81.03%) and if we couple in his accuracy with both the driver and irons, we could be looking at a successful defence.

Did you know: Daniel Berger played a lot of tennis as a child, which is why his swing is so unique and unorthodox from the takeaway.

Min Woo Lee

Min Woo Lee

(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)

Min Woo Lee is still in his infancy as a touring professional, but that has not stopped him from securing two European Tour wins. Also, you can’t win a Rolex Series event without being a true competitor, and that famous victory at the Scottish Open will set him up nicely for the remainder of his career. He has only played two events this season - the Australian PGA Championship and the Abu Dhabi Championship - where he finished T4th and T35th respectively.

He's currently ranked 51st in the world but with such an action-packed schedule, we can assume he will breach the top 50 in no time at all. The AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am will mark his PGA Tour debut, which is another exciting milestone that will be achieved - all before the age of 24. The future is very bright for Lee and this is the perfect platform to showcase your game to the entire golfing audience.

Did you know: when Min Woo Lee won the U.S. Junior Amateur in 2016, he and his sister became the first brother/sister pair to win the USGA’s junior championships after Minjee Lee triumphed in the U.S. Girls’ Junior in 2012.

Aaron Rai

If you are a British golf fan and Aaron Rai is not on your radar, we highly recommend you get used to his presence as he’s destined for the big-time. His early origins can be best summarised as humble beginnings, as he battled his way through the professional ranks having initially started on the PGA EuroPro Tour - who have helped develop Tyrrell Hatton, Tommy Fleetwood and even Louis Oosthuizen. I suppose it would be quite ironic that Rai would defeat Fleetwood in the 2020 Scottish Open playoff, a real moment of proudness for the EuroPro Tour and all of the fantastic work they do for young professional golfers.

There are several routes to the PGA Tour but one thing we can admire Rai for is the approach he took. Desperate to play in America and prove himself against the very best, he qualified for his Tour card via the Korn Ferry Tour and even held the lead on the 72nd tee at the Albertsons Boise Open, although a double-bogey would end his quest for victory. His last outing, at the Farmers Insurance Open only days ago, resulted in a T6th finish but it could have been better. After three brilliant rounds in the sixties, an erratic final outing of 72 (E) scuppered his chances for glory after five bogies cancelled out five birdies. Still at the age of 26, and celebrating his tenth year as a professional, Rai has the world at his feet.

Did you know: Aaron Rai uses iron covers on Tour as he believes it helps to value what you have and where his journey began.

Seamus Power

Another Irishman to the already long list of marvellous Irish golfers, Seamus Power has been around much longer than you think. The majority of golfers have a somewhat straight-forward journey to the summit of professional golf, Power not so much. He attended East Tennessee State University before progressing into the professional ranks, relying on the Web.com Tour (now Korn Ferry) as a viable route into the PGA Tour. He recorded two top 10 finishes in 2015 but he would secure his maiden professional win at the United Leasing & Finance Championship - becoming the first Irishman to win on the second-tier Tour.

July 2021 would result in his inaugural PGA Tour win after capturing the Barbasol Championship through a playoff win over James Poston. Although we are not selecting him due to his history, it’s important to note his beginnings and just how hard he has worked to be where he is today. The 17th of January 2022 would mark the first time that Power had breached the world’s top 50 after he finished 3rd at the Sony Open. He then followed up that performance with T14th at The American Express, where a disappointing final round of two-over halted the previous progress. Still, back-to-back performances that have resulted in top 20 finishes makes for promising reading. Can he go two better than his display in Hawaii?

Did you know: Seamus Power became only the fifth player from the Republic of Ireland to win a PGA Tour event - Pat Doyle, Peter O’Hara, Padraig Harrington and Shane Lowry were the previous four.


These are the five players that we will be keeping a keen eye on over at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

All five have either demonstrated recently that they have the game to triumph or have promising careers ahead of them.

This is the first instalment of a weekly series that will choose five golfers who you absolutely need to look out for during the next competition.

Who do you fancy to strike their way to glory in California?


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