With three days down in the books, the Waste Management Open tournament in Phoenix, Arizona has been full of excitement. The current leader is Spencer Levin. Also in the mix is Webb Simpson, Bubba Watson, Kyle Stanley and crowd favorite Phil Mickelson.
Levin is a young 27 year old, noted for his tendencies for to get upset with himself after bad shots. So far he has looked very good in the tournament. Currently, he has a six shot lead over his closest competitor in Simpson. Spencer heads into the final round at -17. Will he put another solid round of golf together? So far he has looked unflappable, but the young pro has never won on the PGA Tour. He is facing a similar situation to that of Kyle Stanley in last week's tournament.
Bubba Watson is no stranger to tough competition. The long bomber could be the person to overtake Levin with his monstrous drives and aggressive play. I think Bubba will be looking for blood and give the young Levin a chase for the championship. At -11, he has plenty of room to attack while letting Spencer make mistakes and fall back.
Kyle Stanley will be looking for vindication. He suffered a somewhat unfair loss last week after shooting a triple bogey on the last hole and eventually losing a playoff. This 24 year old has shown great resolve. I do not think he will win this tournament, but it is nice to see him playing with continued conviction. Count on him for being a force in golf for a while to come.
My choice for ace in the hole is Jason Dufner. He made his presence known in last year's PGA Championship and came up second to Keegan Bradley in the major championship. Look for him to put a solid round of golf together in the final round of play.
I find myself again rooting against Mickelson. You can see my thought is my article My Two Least Favorite Players on the PGA Tour: A Fan's Take. Mickelson will have the benefit of the crowd behind him and should not be counted out.
The most challenging holes will be 16 and 17. A crowd of 20,000 will be at the prior, egging on all the competitors and chastising poor shots. The 17th is a brutal par 4. The pin location may ultimately decide the tournament. On Saturday, the back left placement caused many competitors to run the ball off the green and make bogeys.
I await with excitement. Who will win this week's tournament?
I am an avid golf fan. I enjoy playing recreational on local courses and watching the PGA Tour. I also like keeping up to date with all the new faces to the game.