Liberty National is a Par 71 course with many sand bunkers and water hazards. It measures at 7353 yards and has three Par 5’s.
The course hosted this tournament back in 2009 when Heath Slocum won by one shot from Ernie Els, Padraig Harrington, Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker. That year the course had mixed reviews and has since undergone 74 changes to 15 of the 18 holes making it a more playable course.
The signature Par 3, fourteenth hole on the water is still its crown jewel with Executive Director of The Barclays, Peter Mele saying, “You wont find a more spectacular hole anywhere”.
With the Statute of Liberty as a backdrop we can expect to see some great viewing this week.
The two players to follow this week are-
Matt Kuchar 30/1
I was amazed to see the price for Matt this week. 30/1 for a guy ranked 2nd on the FedEx ladder who also has two wins this season is great value. Especially on an eachway basis.
The World No.6 is having a great year. Nineteen cuts made in all nineteen starts with twelve Top 25’s and seven Top 10’s, plus the two wins in the WGC Accenture Match Play and The Memorial Tournament.
Since the Memorial Kuchar has put together some great results, T28th US Open, T15th The Open Championship, T2nd Canadian Open, T27th WGC Bridgestone Invitational and T22nd PGA Championship. That is some pretty consistent golf which includes Top 30 finishes in all 4 Majors this year.
Kuchar’s stats also stand out when assessing his chances this week. 19th in strokes gained putting, 6th in scoring average, 2nd in sand saves, 10th in Par 5 birdie or better average, 8th in scrambling and 1st in 3 putt avoidance. With plenty of bunkers and three Par 5’s on the Liberty National course you should expect to see Matt up there challenging over the weekend.
Charl Schwartzel 50/1
Another golfer who is much better than the odds that are available is Charl Schwartzel. From 15 starts he has produced 10 Top 25’s on tour this season. Pretty good conversion rate in any ones book. Highlights have been T3rd Northern Trust, T9th Honda Classic, 3rd Byron Nelson and T8th Memorial Tournament.
Since the Memorial he has finished 14th US Open, T15th The Open Championship, T28th Canadian Open, T21st WGC Bridgestone and the only blip on the map was the Missed Cut at the PGA Championship.
Expect to see Charl with all guns blazing this week after the short break since the PGA Championship. He is ranked 7th in birdie average, 5th in scoring average and 8th in Par 5 birdie or better average. At 50/1 Schwartzel is a must back at that price.
Good Luck and Good Punting.