Record In Danger At Shootout

Image courtesy of skysports.com
Ian Pouter will play alongside fellow Englishman Lee Westwood. Image courtesy of skysports.com

One of 12 elite pairs in the field, Ryder Cup teammates Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood are pushing for favouritism at the 25th annual Franklin Templeton Shootout starting Saturday morning (AEST) at the Tiburon Gold Club in Naples, Florida. It’s the first time in the 25 year history of the tournament two Englishmen have been paired in the one team.

Another new combination, Harris English and Matt Kuchar head the market. This will be English’s first appearance in the Shootout, Kuchar’s fifth. Both won multiple individual events in 2013, with Kuchar a six-time champion on the PGA Tour.

Played over three days, the Shootout features a modified alternate-shot format during the first round, a better ball second day and a final round scramble. The combination to watch, particularly under this format, is Jason Dufner and Dustin Johnson . Both have had solid seasons and previous form at the Shootout. Johnson won three years ago with Poulter, while Dufner finished third last year with Fijian Vijay Singh.

Three-time champion Kenny Perry and his partner Sean O’Hair are hoping to become the first pair to win back-to-back titles since 2004. In his 24th start in the tournament, host Greg Norman joins rising young Swede Jonas Blitx . The 54-hole record of 33 under is in real danger of being eclipsed.

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