The US Open gets starts off on the 18th at Chambers Bay and the venue has garnered more attention than the players themselves. 156 golfers will vie for top honors and a name in history books as they tee off this Thursday.
Let us look at 10 golfers who stand a chance to lay their hands on the coveted trophy.
Let’s start with a man who has finished runner-up here on a record six occasions. Phil Mickelson cannot be ruled out just yet and his second place finish at this year’s Masters just drives home this point.
The 44-year-old will have the backing of the crowd and has every chance of completing his career Grand Slam come June 21st.
The 23-year old Japanese golfer will have fond memeries of the US Open as he entered the top 50 of the golf rankings courtesy a Top 10 finish in 2013. The former World No. 1 Amateur golfer has finished in the Top 10 six times this year and came in fifth at the Memorial.
His swing is his strength and his tee-to-green game can help him go deep at the Open.
The South African can spring a surprise or two in Chambers Bay this week. Justin Rose’s game has improved over the past couple of years and he has matured as a player. The 2013 US Open champion finished second at this year’s Masters and is currently ranked sixth in the world.
His recent performances have been encouraging. After losing in a playoff to David Lingmerth at the Memorial, he won the Zurich Classic at New Orleans. He will look to continue that form into Washington.
Jim Furyk is currently ranked third in the world and tasted success at the RBC Heritage tournament by overcoming Kevin Kisner with a birdie. It was the American’s first tour victory in five years.
He has finished in the top five twice this year and came fifth at the Memorial. The 2003 US Open champion is looking for his 18 th title on the PGA tour.
After changing his swing seven years ago, Matt Kuchar has seen tremendous improvements in his results. The American has gone on to win the Players Championship (2012) and his first World Golf Championship event.
He is yet to win a major, but with consistent results over the years, Kuchar can be a serious threat in Washington.
Jimmy Walker recorded his best year on the PGA tour in 2014 after he finished in the Top 10 on three occasions. Walker earned a place in the US Ryder Cup team thanks to his impressive performances last season.?
A sixth place finish at the Masters earlier this year and five other Top 10s this season, Dustin Johnson can get the better of anyone on his day. He is one of the longest drivers on the tour today and his powerful driving can earn him his first major.
The defending champion is paired with Rory McIlroy for the first two rounds this year. Martin Kaymer won his first major at the PGA Championship in 2010 and a bad run of form ensued before the German won his second major at Pinehurst last year.
Kaymer was ranked No. 1 in the world for eight weeks in 2011. Kaymer’s best result this year has been a third place finish at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.
Jordan Spieth became the second youngest golfer behind Tiger Woods to win the Masters after scoring 270 (−18). With two wins, three runner-ups and nine Top 10 finishes, don’t be surprised if Spieth repeats his Masters feat in Chambers Bay.
Another advantage for the young American is his caddie Michael Greller, who worked at Chambers Bay before joining Spieth on the PGA tour. He leads the tour with a scoring average of 69.166.
The World No. 1 has missed two cuts in his last two starts at the European PGA Championship and Irish Open respectively. Rory McIlroy’s form shouldn’t be a concern as he has showed in the past that he can bounce back in impreesive fashion.
He won the US Open in 2011 before adding three majors to his tally in the last three years. McIlroy has taken time off to rejuvenate himself until he resumed practice last Sunday in Florida.