Review blog of the Nedbank Golf Challenge and Houston Open – November 10 to 13.
Another Sunday and yet another flop from our main selection when leading the tournament. 2022 has been our best year for having selections in the top five of tournaments going into final rounds. But is has been our worst year for results. I look forward greatly to 2023 when variance may well decide to be in our favour.
In South Africa Thomas Detry was a joint leader before the final round. A final round 69 would have won him the tournament as it turned out. He carded a dreadful 77! For transparency I have detailed how all of our selections did:
IN South Africa:
Detry flopped and finished in a tie for thirteenth place.
Lucas Herbert finished a very ordinary tied 25th.
Hurly Long had his worst week for some time and finished a lowly tied 52nd.
Ewen Ferguson was our only winner of the week as a top twenty pick. He was tied for 13th place and returned a full win.
Scottie Scheffler never looked like winning this one and ended up in a multi way tie for ninth place.
Hideki Matsuyama had to withdraw after two rounds with an injury.
Will Gordon got off to a good start on Thursday. But the rest of the week was not so good, and he finished in a tie for 43rd place. Will was also our top twenty selection.
On to the tournament reviews.
Nedbank Golf Challenge – was won by the defending champion and betting market favourite, Tommy Fleetwood. An emotional win for Tommy. This was his first win since that time three years ago and also his best performance since losing his mother earlier in 2022. Tommy carded a final round 67 to beat Ryan Fox by one stroke. There were a few bottlers amongst the leading group here, which allowed Tommy to show his class and pass them all.
Shubhankar Sharma finished third and Scot Richie Ramsay fourth. I was somewhat surprised to see Christian Bezuidenhout not perform better on Sunday in his homeland. A very ordinary 72 was only good enough for fifth place.
The much-touted Min Woo Lee let followers down again. A 76 on Friday put him out of it and meant that he could only finish in a tie for 8th place. Rasmus Hojgaard was in with a good chance of the win on Sunday morning but a 76 is very poor when going for victory. Robert MacIntyre had a bad week and finished tied 32nd.
There was generally some mediocre golf all round this week and almost all of these guys are a million miles away for making the USGA Tour.
Houston Open – was comfortably won by Tony Finau. 2022 has been stellar for Tony. He killed this tournament with opening rounds of 65 and 62, then cruised home over the weekend to win by four strokes. We were on Finau last week when he missed the cut. We gave up on him too early!
In second place was Korn Ferry Tour graduate Tyson Alexander and the young Englishman Ben Taylor finished third.
Of the bigger names – as already mentioned Scottie Scheffler was an ordinary tied 9th place. Jason Day was well tipped for this one. But he never wins. A tied for 16th place was all that he could manage. Overall, a sub-standard event and on to forget. Well done again Tony!
Initial selections for this week’s tournaments will be online Tuesday PM.
Good luck Martin