It's that time of the week for Razzball's Tuesday Fantasy Golf Notes, February 23, 2016 edition. Our weekly review of what happened on the weekend that's of interest to fantasy golf fanatics everywhere. This week featured a 2nd L.A. Open title for Bubba Watson, a career best finish for Jason Kokrak, a return to form for Adam Scott, another near miss at Riviera for Dustin Johnson and the end of a long victory drought on the European Tour. Here are our Tuesday Fantasy Golf Notes for this week.
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The PGA Tour returns to one of America's greatest golf courses this week, as the golfing world sets it's focus on Riviera. That means it's time for our 2016 Northern Trust Open picks. Last year Korean born, American raised James Hahn, previously more famous for his dance skills (see his classic version of Gangnum Style here) than his golfing exploits, upset some of the biggest names in golf, to claim his first PGA Tour title. This year he will be challenged by a strong field that includes five of the top eight players in the Official World Golf Ranking. Those looking to take the prestigious L.A. Open crown will include World number one Jordan Spieth, #3 ranked Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson (6th), Justin Rose (7th) and Dustin Johnson (8th). Watson is a former winner of the event, having won the title in 2014. Other former champions in the field include 2013 winner John Merrick, Bill Haas, the 2012 victor, and 2011 titleholder Aaron Baddeley.
Despite a couple of weeks of inactivity, South Africa's Branden Grace remains number in the Razzball Fantasy Golf Rankings, February 16, 2016 edition. Grace, who hasn't played since his win at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, also moved into 10th in the Official World Golf Ranking. It's the first time the 27-year-old has cracked the Top 10. Rickie Fowler also holds his spot at #2, just ahead of Grace's countryman Charl Schwartzel, who bursts back into the Top 10 after his win at the European Tour's Tshwane Open. The 2011 Masters' Champion jumps 21 spots from 24th to third. Brandt Snedeker drops one position to four and Spain's Rafael Cabrera-Bello hold #5 for a second week, to round out the top five.
Welcome to the Razzball Tuesday Fantasy Golf Notes, February 16, 2016 edition. This is the first of what will be a new weekly feature of Razzball Fantasy Golf. Each week we'll have a look at some of the news, happenings and rumours dominating the world of professional golf. Here are our Tuesday Fantasy Golf Notes, February 16, 2016 edition:
Taylor Victory Continues Unpredictable YearIn some ways, we should have seen it coming. When Vaughn Taylor came from behind to win the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am on Sunday, it was the continuation of what, so far, has been one of the most unpredictable starts to a PGA Tour season, in recent memory. The American shot a final round 65 to edge Phil Mickelson by a shot. It was Taylor's first win since the 2005 Reno-Tahoe Open and his third overall. The victory moved him up 347 places in the Official World Golf Ranking to number 100, his highest ranking since 2007. Safe to say that Taylor wasn't on anyone's short list to win at Pebble, despite his T10 in this even in 2015. But should we have been totally surprised? 2015-2016 has been a string of uneven performances thus far, where, week-to-week, pedigree, current form or past performance at an event seems to give no indication of who will win or play well. Taylor's victory was just the latest example.
Pebble Beach, Ca - Time for our 2016 AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am picks, as the PGA Tour returns to one of the World's greatest Golf Courses. Defending champion Brandt Snedeker, one of the hottest players on tour this season, will be looking for his 3rd victory in four years in this event. Pebble Beach has also attracted six of the top nine players in the world, including the number one player in the Official World Golf Ranking, Jordan Spieth. Other top ranked players include third-ranked Jason Day, Bubba Watson (6th), Justin Rose (7th), Patrick Reed (9th) and Dustin Johnson (8th). Johnson will also be looking for his third AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am title, after wins in 2009 and 2010. Other past champions in the field include Jimmy Walker (2014), three-time winner Phil Mickelson (2012, 2005 and 1998), D.A. Points (2011), Vijay Singh (2004) and Davis Love III (2001 and 2003).
South Africa's Branden Grace is still number one in the Razzball Fantasy Golf Rankings, February 9, 2016 edition. But a couple of rising stars, on either side of the Atlantic, are closing in on the leader. American Rickie Fowler, who lost in a playoff at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, moves up two places to number two, 146 points behind Grace. On the European Tour, England's Danny Willett won at the Dubai Desert Classic, moved to #13 in the Official World Golf Ranking, and jumped from #17 to fourth in the weekly rankings. Brandt Snedeker, who drops from second to third after a disappointing T33 at Phoenix, and Dubai runner-up Rafael Cabrera-Bello, who moved 15 to fifth, complete the top five. The Dubai finish was the Spaniard's second consecutive second-place check after a similar finish in Qatar.
Here's a few things we noticed as we present our weekly Razzball Moving Day Fantasy Golf Report, February 6, 2016 edition.
Rickie Looking for 2nd win of 2016After a win in Abu Dhabi, and a disappointing jet-lagged induced missed cut at San Diego, Rickie Fowler is back in contention. After opening with rounds of 65 and 68, Fowler looks poised for another victory this week at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. The fourth ranked player in the Official World Golf Ranking sits one shot back of 36-hole leader and fellow American James Hahn, who sits at -10 through two rounds. Fowler has left no doubt that his goal this year is to turn the big three of Jordan Spieth, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy into a Big Four, and based on early results he just might have a chance to do it. With Spieth running around the world getting rich, McIlroy getting everything he can out of life and Day seemingly in the midst of a career-year hangover, Fowler might be the best player in the world right now. Of course, it will all come down to how he performs in the four majors.
Scottsdale, Arizona - It's time for our 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open picks and there's no shortage of story lines as the PGA Tour returns to the Arizona desert. On top of the agenda is whether Brandt Snedeker, last week's winner in San Diego at the Farmers Insurance Open, can keep rolling. That roll has seen him finish in the Top 3 in all three events he's played in 2016. The Nashville native has moved up 37 spots in the Official World Golf Ranking to #12 since the start of the year, and sits second in the Razzball.com Fantasy Golf Rankings. Another story line will be trying to figure out which Rickie Fowler will show up in Scottsdale this week. Will it be the player who delivered a statement victory in Abu Dhabi against a strong field? Or will it be the guy who failed to make the cut last week in San Diego. Let's give young Rickie the benefit of the doubt, and write off his poor performance last week to a combination of celebration and jet lag. We predict he will be better this week. With a strong field that includes 10 of the Top 25 players in the World, led by the fourth ranked Bubba Watson, and defending champion Brooks Koepka, we're expecting another exciting event. So without further adieu, here is our 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open Picks.
There's a new name on top, in the weekly Razzball.com Fantasy Golf Rankings, February 2, 2016 edition. South African Branden Grace, fresh off defending his title at the European Tour's Commercial Bank Qatar Masters on Saturday, has reached the top, knocking last week's leader Jordan Spieth down to #3. Grace is up to #11 in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) after an impressive stretch of golf that includes six straight Top 10 finishes. It was the 27-year old Pretoria native's first win since last year's Qatar Masters. The weekend's other big winner, American Brandt Snedeker, moves up to second in the weekly rankings, jumping 12 spots from #14. The 2012 Fed Ex Cup champion won the Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego on Monday for his 8th PGA tour win. It was the 35-year old's third top three finish of 2016 after his 2nd place showing at the Sony Open and a third-place effort at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. Spieth is still number one in the OWGR, and wasn't exactly idle on the weekend, placing second in the Singapore Open, a non-ranking event co-sponsored by the Japanese and Asian Tours.
It's another golf Saturday and time again for the Moving Day Fantasy Golf Report, Saturday, January 30, 2016 edition. Here are the big stories from the world of fantasy golf that we noticed heading into championship weekend.