Justin Thomas defends Sony Open in Hawaii
The PGA Tour remains in Hawaii this week after DJ’s impressive win in the Sentry Tournament of Champions. Justin Thomas defends the Sony Open in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club.Justin Thomas defends Sony Open in HawaiiThe PGA Tour remains in Hawaii this week after DJ’s impressive win in the Sentry Tournament of Champions. Justin Thomas defends the Sony Open in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club.
A strong field will assemble at Waialae as many of those who competed at Kapalua have stayed on for this event. In fact, 20 players are scheduled to make the journey from Maui including defending champion Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth and 2017 rookie of the year Xander Schauffele.
The Hawaiian Open has been contested at Waialae CC since 1965 and the list of winners is impressive – Jack Nicklaus, Hale Irwin, Ernie Els and Vijay Singh have all lifted the trophy.
Last year, Justin Thomas followed up his victory at Kapalua with another win in Hawaii. The youngster opened his account with a stunning 59 at Waialae and went on to win by seven full shots over England’s Justin Rose. Thomas set a tournament scoring record of 27-under-par.
Justin Rose swing sequence:
Opened for play in 1927, the course at Waialae has a long and distinguished history. The layout was originally by Seth Raynor and Charles Banks though Desmond Muirhead completed a redesign in 1990. It’s a course where the wind is often a significant factor.
The weather forecast looks set fair although, as mentioned above, gusty winds could feature.
Venue: Waialae Country Club, Honolulu, Hawaii
Date: Jan 11-14
Course stats: par 70, 7,044 yards
Defending champion: Justin Thomas (-27)
Thursday 11 – Sky Sports Golf from midnight
Friday 12 – Sky Sports Golf from midnight
Saturday 13 – Sky Sports Golf from midnight
Sunday 14 – Sky Sports Golf from 11.00pm
Jordan Spieth – A solid showing last week at Kapalua after a poor opening round suggests the Open champion is coming onto form. He likes the course at Waialae and was third here last year.
Marc Leishman – He’s a great wind player and this course suits his game, reflected by two top-10 finishes in the past. He started well at Kapalua and shared the 36-hole lead. He will look to bounce back from a disappointing weekend.
Brian Harman – He’s been on great form recently and was third last week at Kapalua. He also has a good record in this event – three top-20 finishes in his last three starts.
Key hole: 1st. Modelled by course architect Seth Raynor on the Road Hole at St Andrews, this hole used to be a par 5. At 488 yards to a shallow green protected by a huge bunker, it generally plays to an average of almost 4.5.
Skills required: Driving accuracy. This is one of the tightest courses on the PGA Tour schedule, regularly ranking in the top-10 of most difficult fairways to find on the circuit. The greens are tough to hold when not playing in from the short stuff so finding the shortest cut will be crucial for success this week. The wind will also be a factor.
This article Justin Thomas defends Sony Open in Hawaii appeared first on Golf Monthly.