5 Players to Watch at the Scottish Open

This week’s Scottish Open options a superb subject of gamers, and it’s simple to perceive why.

The match serves as a tuneup for subsequent week’s British Open, giving gamers a possibility to get acclimated with the challenges of hyperlinks golf, performed on programs on sandy soil close to a shoreline. Among those that will likely be in Scotland: the world No. 1 Jon Rahm, the winner of final month’s United States Open; No. three Justin Thomas; and No. four Collin Morikawa.

Quite a lot of prime gamers from England may also compete, together with Tyrrell Hatton (10), Matthew Fitzpatrick (23), Lee Westwood (28) and Tommy Fleetwood (33).

Here are 5 different golfers to control.

Xander Schauffele

Schauffele, an American ranked No. 5, was in the hunt at the U.S. Open in June, ending in a tie for seventh.

He is having one other robust season on the PGA Tour. In 17 begins, he has compiled seven Top 10s.

In April, Schauffele made a late run in the ultimate spherical at the Masters, closing to inside two photographs of the chief and eventual champion, Hideki Matsuyama. Schauffele, nevertheless, then made a triple bogey on No. 16 after knocking his tee shot into the water. He wound up in a tie for third.

At 27, Schauffele belongs on the record of younger skills seemingly to be an element for years. The tour’s rookie of the yr in 2017, he has gained 4 tournaments, together with the 2018 WGC-HSBC Champions.

Schauffele will likely be making his first begin in the Scottish Open. His final look in Scotland was in the 2018 British Open. He tied for second, two strokes behind the winner, Francesco Molinari.

Credit…Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Scottie Scheffler

At 25, Scheffler, of the United States, belongs on the identical record as Schauffele.

Since Scheffler turned skilled in 2018, he has competed in six majors, posting three Top 10s. His finest end was a tie for fourth in the 2020 P.G.A. Championship.

Scheffler, like Schauffele, definitely had his probabilities at the U.S. Open. Going into the ultimate spherical, he was solely three photographs again, however ended up ending in a tie for seventh.

Ranked No. 19, he has loads of distance — he averages greater than 304 yards — and makes his share of birdies, tied for sixth on the PGA Tour with four.37 per spherical.

Early this yr, he missed the minimize in back-to-back weeks at the American Express and the Farmers Insurance Open.

Since then, in 15 appearances, he has registered seven Top 10s, together with a second at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, and a 3rd at the Memorial Tournament.

Scheffler may also be taking part in the Scottish Open for the first time.

Credit…Erik S Lesser/EPA, by way of Shutterstock

Richard Bland

It shouldn’t be seemingly that Bland, 48, will stroll away with the winner’s trophy on Sunday. Although after what has occurred in latest months, the English participant is certainly value watching.

In May, Bland grew to become the oldest first-time winner on the European Tour, outdueling Guido Migliozzi in a playoff to seize the Betfred British Masters. For Bland, who turned professional in 1996, the victory got here in his 478th tour look. He made just one bogey the complete match.

Then, in the U.S. Open, he recorded rounds of 70 and 67 to seize a share of the lead at the midway mark. Phil Mickelson’s profitable the P.G.A. at age 50 this yr was fairly a narrative, however what Bland was pulling off was much more beautiful.

Bland, ranked No. 105, couldn’t preserve it going over the weekend. He shot 77 and 78 to end in a tie for 50th. Earlier this month, he tied for fourth in the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open.

Credit…Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Ian Poulter

There shouldn’t be a lot to point out that Poulter, of England, is on the verge of doing one thing particular.

In his final three begins on the PGA Tour, he has failed to end higher than a tie for 25th at the Palmetto Championship at Congaree.

However, in May, he tied for third at the Charles Schwab Challenge, and this can be a Ryder Cup yr, which suggests there must be further motivation for him to get his sport in prime type over the subsequent a number of months to make the European staff once more.

As it stands, Poulter, 45, has not earned sufficient factors to qualify for Team Europe in the Ryder Cup, which can get underway in late September.

Yet, given his document in the occasion — in his six appearances, Poulter has gone 14-6-2 — he stands a great opportunity of being one in every of the picks that the staff’s captain, Padraig Harrington, will make to full his roster.

Poulter tied for sixth in final yr’s Scottish Open.

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Martin Kaymer

It is straightforward to overlook that Kaymer, 36, of Germany, is a two-time main winner (2010 P.G.A. Championship and 2014 U.S. Open) and a former No. 1 participant in the world. He has not gained a match since the U.S. Open, when he prevailed by eight strokes.

Lately, although, he has demonstrated some indicators that the drought may quickly come to an finish.

In April, at the Austrian Golf Open, he completed third, and in final month’s BMW International Open he closed with a 64, which included 10 birdies, to are available in second, two strokes behind the winner.

Kaymer’s efficiency at the U.S. Open additionally confirmed some promise. After opening with a six-over 77, he posted rounds of 68 and 69 to tie for 26th. It was his finest exhibiting at a serious since the 2017 Masters.