The 2023 British Open has now ended. Brian Harman was crowned champion after a dominant display, where he went on to win by six shots and was the only player to get into double figures. He took control of the final Major of the year in the second round and went on to play some superb golf. To win from the front like that takes some doing and it’s not as easy as it seems.
For my selections, it started off a bit ropey for the first few days, but Sepp Straka did us proud and finished in a tie for second at 200/1, giving us some profit for the week. I hope that we can keep the momentum going as we head into the 3M Oen, which takes place at TPC Twin Cities this week.
There is no DP World Tour event this week, so it’s just the PGA Tour for us to take a look at. Last year’s winner was Tony Finau, who finished up 17 under par and this is likely to be another low scoring event. This week, I have five selections for you, which, as usual, I advise at level stakes.
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Selection number one for this week’s 3M Open is the 23-year-old Swedish sensation Ludvig Aberg. Even though he’s a rookie on the PGA Tour, he is rapidly becoming a very eye-catching player and in each of his seven events to date, he has just got better and better. He is proving more than capable and clearly has all the tools needed to get his first win on the PGA Tour. Ludvig is pretty long off the tee, is third in the strokes gained off the tee leaderboard going into this week's event and he has been very good with his Irons too.
I really like the way he handles himself on a golf course, he has a very mature attitude to his golf and I find it hard to see him too far away at the end of this event if he continues to play the way he has. His best finish to date came in the John Deere, just two weeks ago, where he tied for fourth, finishing with a final round 63. I think he has an outstanding chance here this week. He’s a very good ball striker, makes plenty of birdies, has class in abundance and he’s absolutely fearless.
Eric Cole is somewhat a journeyman of the game and since finishing second in the Honda earlier on this year, he has been in great form and very consistent to go with it. He has definitely found something in his game, as he has managed eight Top 25’s since then as well. To frank that form, he has also made eight of his last 10 cuts, so you’re highly to get a good run for your money with Eric.
He went over to play in the Genesis Scottish Open and thrived on the links course, scoring rounds of 67, 69 and 64, before having a bad final day, where the weather pretty much put him out of contention, so he can be forgiven for that. He didn’t play in the British Open, so he comes here nice and fresh after a week off. Overall, he’s a very likeable player, who I think holds great credentials this week.
Adam Hadwin is a player that has struggled to find consistency this year, but he has still achieved five Top 15 finishes on the PGA Tour. He was second in the Zurich, and then only just got beaten during a play off in the Rocket Mortgage three weeks ago. One aspect that has me very interested in Hadwin this week is his Iron play. He seems to have sorted that out of late and that will bode well for him at this course – it really is a must here.
Adam also has some really good form in Minnesota, he won here as an amateur and has also played three times in the 3M Open previously. He finished in a tie for sixth and fourth on his last two attempts, so he clearly enjoys this part of the country. Consistency may not be his speciality, but if he’s on his game he will be a good shout here and clearly thrives at the course too.
Austin Eckroat is only 24, he came up through the college ranks and he has seemingly been progressing throughout the season, so he’s likely gearing up for his first win on the PGA Tour. He has been slightly inconsistent at times, but that’s more than acceptable as he is learning his trade on Tour. However, this season he has racked up six Top 25 finishes, including three Top 10’s already. His best performance to date was when he finished second in the AT&T Byron Nelson back in May, so he is very capable.
This course will really suit his game, as he’s very efficient off the tee and is a superb Iron player to go with it. Also, he has taken a break since his tilt at the Scottish Open, so I imagine he will be fully fresh and ready to put in a big performance again this week. Austin Eckroat is definitely a player to keep on the radar and one who is surely ready for a big win.
JT Poston is a two-time winner on the PGA Tour and has shown some really good form of late. He contested in the Open Championship last week, made the cut, and finished in a tie for 41st place. That was a more than respectable effort for a player who has very little links golf experience.
Prior to the Open Championship he finished in a tie for sixth in the Scottish Open and also finished tied sixth in the John Deere the week before. Providing the travelling hasn’t taken too much out of him, he has an obvious chance and I think he’s overpriced 55/1. He is a very well-rounded player anyway, but his approach play and putting have been superb of late, which is a must-have for this week.
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