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Fantasy Picks: The Open Championship

July 14, 2010

Raising a jugRaising the Claret Jug on Sunday at St. Andrews is a thing of beauty. Legends have come before, walked the hallowed fairways, cursed the wind and drank at the same 19th hole for years. This week marks the return of one of my favorite sporting events of the year, The Open Championship.

There is something about the look of the play on TV that captivates me… though let’s be honest here, if golf is on TV you could stampede Buffalo thru the living room and I wouldn’t even notice. But this year it is that much more captivating, because The Darby and I have been playing the entire fantasy pool season so we would be positioned to make a run at the British. Maybe not the smartest decision at times (I would have loved Poulter in the match play earlier this year!), but nonetheless, here we are.

After much debate (6 weeks of discussion), angst and patience, The Darby and I have made the call and selected the following roster for our fantasy pool for the 2010 Open Championship…

Some may be asking… why these bums? Though we did play the entire season to have as much firepower at our disposal come this week, it’s hard not to use players like Lee Westwood, Tiger, Justin Rose, Erni Els, Paul Casey, Luke Donald and the host of other world class players in the field this week when they are hotter than hot earlier in the year. That said, I think we’ve left a good selection for ourselves and have high hopes for all three making the cut, 2 in the top 15 and with any luck in the top 10.

As for others that we debated on, there were many.

Charles Schwartzel – The crafty S. African start the year in our top three predicted for the British, however, despite his high world ranking and solid performance earlier in the year things have quieted down for Charles. If there is one thing this year has taught us all it’s ride them while they’re hot and ol’ Chucky just isn’t very hot right now.

Martin Kaymer – Martin falls in the same not hot enough category as CS. Riding his high world ranking from great performances last year and earlier this season, a poor showing at the Scottish open with a 71,74  leaving him at +3 and missing the cut last week was the nail in the coffin for Marty.

Tom Watson – The old warhorse has been hunting majors the past few years, capped with his incredible performance at the British last year. While power and shot shaping are pluses in this tournament, the thing that trumps them all is experience. Not to mention Tom has that sweet swing working for him right now and is in a great frame of mind. If there is one guy who I wish we could add as a fourth, it’s Mr. Watson.

Ross Fisher – This is no doubt the year of the Brits. Everyone is talking about the great successes on Tour of the many fine players coming over from England, Ireland and Scotland. Among all the attention Ross Fisher has largely gone unnoticed, but we feel he is in for a strong showing this week. For us it came down to a combination of world ranking, as well as a need to diversify our roster so we weren’t relying soley on resident of the British Isles.

Either way, we think this years winner is going to be a European. Though I’d be happily surprised if Tigger came out and smacked the field around to let them know he’s still here to play.

Hit ’em straight folks!

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