|Preview for this week's AT&T golf tournament|
Following last week’s procession for Jason Day, let’s hope the AT&T Byron Nelson throws up a bit more in the way of entertainment. We have a fairly solid field to contend with despite stiff competition from the Irish Open, with Jordan Spieth proving the marque attraction.
As for the course itself, the TPC Four Seasons Resort at Las Colinas measures in just under 7,200 yards and will play as a par 70. Despite it’s relatively short distance, it’s another track suited to bombers who are able to complement their driving with a tight short game.
Last year Steven Bowditch came from nowhere to absolutely smash the field, setting a record score of 18-under. He opened with a 62 and closed with a 64 to win a rain-affected tournament. With yet more rain forecast for this week, the course should play easy once again, so expect low scoring across the board.
Last Five Winners
2015 Steven Bowditch -18 | 2014 Brendon Todd -14 | 2013 Sang-Moon Bae -13 | 2012 Jason Dufner -11 | 2011 Keegan Bradley -3 (playoff)
To Win Outright
Jordan Speith 10/1 | Dustin Johnson 9/1 | Sergio Garcia 18/1 | Matt Kuchar 20/1 | Charlie Hoffman 22/1
Jason Dufner (40/1 Win & 9/1 Place)
Dufner will be looking to become a two-time winner here, having triumphed back in 2012. One of the purest ball strikers on tour, he relishes the challenge posed by this course. He has three top ten finishes in his last five starts here and hasn’t missed a cut in that time. He might be a bit short at 40s, but if he can get his putter running hot, he’ll be right in contention come Sunday.
Ryan Palmer (45/1 Win & 10/1 Place)
Palmer has been a model of consistency this season, having made the cut in every tournament he’s started since the Frys.com in October. The Texas native arrives here on the back of a commendable T23 at The Players, which followed on from his T4 at the Valero Texas Open. He’s right up there in Driving Distance (11th) and is 23rd on tour in birdie average (3.92). He also has a strong history at this tournament, having finished T2 back in 2011.
Bryson DeChambeau (60/1 Win & 13/1 Place)
Now I’m a big fan of his, but I’ve been very hesitant about backing DeChambeau since his emergence at this year’s Masters tournament. The flamboyant Californian has simply been too short for a player without his tour card, but I quite fancy him this week. He comes in fresh from a week off after missed cuts at the Texas Open and Quail Hollow. He possesses undoubted talent and it is only a matter of time before he notches up a Tour victory. If he can do it this week, then all the better.
Dustin Johnson (9/1 Win & 2/1 Place)
If you’re looking for someone who can hit the ball long, DJ is always near the top of the list. I’m not a big fan of backing single-digit odds, but Johnson must have a massive chance here. He’s finished in the top eight here in four of his last five visits (the other was a T20) and has been in stellar recent form, including a third-place finish at the Shell Houston Open and a T4 at the Masters. He’s also a big fan of the course. “Ever since I came here, I liked the golf course,” said Johnson after shooting a 62 in the 3rd Round last year. “I think this is the first time I’ve played it when it was soft. Usually, it’s firm and fast, which I really enjoy. I’m hitting a lot more drivers of the tee than normal. Usually, the fairways are so firm that I hit quite a few irons off the tees but this week wherever the ball flies is where it’s stopping.” If the rain comes, as expected, 9/1 could end up looking a gift.