2023 LIV Golf Singapore Preview, Picks & Analysis
FOR the first time since its controversial launch in 2022, the LIV Golf League will be in action for a second successive week. After playing Adelaide last week, they head to Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore.
And they will do so in high spirits after performances of Brooks Koepka, Phil Mickelson and Patrick Reed at The Masters. Ahead of the Augusta National there were reservations about how LIV’s members would be treated by both their fellow players and the patrons. They need not have worried.
Reed even claimed that he heard gallery shouts in support of his LIV team. “It’s the first time really seeing the PGA Tour guys and they were all great,” the 2018 Masters champion said. “They all acted the exact same way, whether I was part of LIV or whether I was a part of the PGA Tour.”
(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)
Mickelson’s relationship with golfers and fans is more complex, which is in keeping with the man himself. He was a poster boy with a halo for so long. Infamous comments relating to the Saudis impacted that but so, too, has the total collapse of his alliance with the PGA Tour. During a final round of 65, patron support genuinely made it appear as if all had been even temporarily forgotten. Mickelson’s approach shot to the hazardous 17th, to within inches of the cup, was one of the shots of the tournament.
Mickelson was asked whether he felt some of the damage to his image had been restored. “Separate, separate,” he said. “They are separate issues. Golf and the professional golf ecosystem and how that’s been handled throughout my career, two totally separate things.
“I’m happy where I’m at. I wanted something different for a lot of reasons, and I’m getting a lot out of it because having a team environment when I was in high school and college golf, it elevated my game, having players to play with, compete with. It brought a great energy and excitement. And that’s what this is doing for me at LIV. I’m not saying it’s for everybody, but it’s been awesome for me, and I love it. There’s always going to be and should always be a place for historical events like this, but it’s OK to have a little bit of different and variety in the game of golf.”
After his sensational performance in Adelaide, Talor Gooch will be chomping at the bit to get going again. There were many PGA Tour luminaries who were sorry to see Talor defect to LIV Golf. He has few weaknesses in his game, is a wonderful putter and, as he proved in Australia, he is not afraid to go really low.
Tournament wins can take it out of you but such was the measure of Gooch’s victory last week that he will still be feeling as fresh as a daisy and raring to get out there.
Talor Gooch will be desperate to prove that last week’s dominant victory was not a one-off. He is a real loss to the PGA Tour.
Designed by Ronald Fream, Sentosa is a par 72 measuring 7,300 yards. The fairways are pretty generous but there is plenty of water and a lot of bunkers and waste areas, with the city of Singapore providing a magnificent backdrop.
Talor Gooch. At the top of his game
Brooks Koepka. Fit and firing again
Patrick Reed. Loved playing at Augusta
Five to Follow:
Talor Gooch. Fantastic short game
Brooks Koepka. Impressive ball striker
Patrick Reed. Feisty
Cameron Smith. Looking to recapture last year’s brilliant form
Charles Howell III. As consistent as they come
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