The Open Preview

The 147th Open Championship is just around the corner, as the golfing elite head to Carnoustie to compete for the Claret Jug.

It is the first time that The Open has been contested at the venue since 2007, when Padraig Harrington defeated Sergio Garcia in a play-off to clinch the trophy.

There are a number of former winners expected in the field this time around, including the likes of Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, three-time winner Tiger Woods and reigning champion Jordan Spieth.

At Rewards4Golf, we have put together our top five picks to win the third major of 2018…


JORDAN SPIETH

Spieth bounced back from a slow start in his final round at Royal Birkdale in 2017 to win by three shots and secure his third major. Only Jack Nicklaus has racked up wins at The Masters, US Open and The Open at a younger age.

Making the cut in 10 of the first 13 tournaments on the PGA Tour in 2018 is a sign of consistency, and on the back of his third-place finish in The Masters it would be no surprise to see him challenge on the Sunday.


TOMMY FLEETWOOD

Missing the cut in three of his previous four attempts is not the ideal experience to prepare for Open week, but Fleetwood was runner-up to Brooks Koepka at the US Open last month on the back of a fourth-place finish in the same event last year.

Fleetwood won the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship back in January, where he overcame Ross Fisher by two strokes, and he represents the best chance of English success in Carnoustie. He also holds the record for the lowest round carded at Carnoustie, after his 63 at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championships in October.


ALEXANDER NOREN

Swedish star Noren tied for sixth-place at Royal Birkdale in 2017, which represents his best finish at a major after finishing ninth back in 2012.

An impressive BMW PGA Championship victory last year was followed up with a strong run at the Farmers Insurance Open this year, where he was pipped by Jason Day in a playoff. His victory in the Open de France last week suggests that he arrives in top form, and a major challenge could be just around the corner.


DUSTIN JOHNSON

Johnson has been at the top of the rankings for a long period of time, and it is a surprise that the 2016 US Open remains his only major to date.

He arrives with a point to prove after one or two underwhelming UK performances in recent times, and especially after throwing away a four-shot lead after the cut at this year’s US Open. But there is no doubting Johnson’s ability at the top level, and many expect him to be in contention in the final rounds.

JON RAHM

The Spaniard has risen to number five in the golf rankings after putting in some fantastic performances over the last 18 months.

Two top-three finishes in WGC events last year has been backed up by victories on the PGA Tour and the European Tour in 2018. He finished fourth at The Masters this year and the 23-year-old looks certain to win multiple majors in the future.


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by Matt Gibbs at rewards4golf

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