Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Evian Masters Preview/Predictions

The Evian Masters is coming! With a $3.25M purse, a great field drawn from the best in the world of women's golf (including all of Hound Dog's new top 30 except for Stacy Lewis, who has a wedding to attend, and Stacy Prammanasudh), a strong cast of past champions, and a cut to the top 70 and ties after the 1st 36 holes, it's one of the most exciting non-majors on both the LET and the LPGA and a fantastic run-up to the Women's British Open. The course boasts a tricky, hilly layout with undulating greens, although it only shows its teeth when the weather gets rough (as witnessed by Natalie Gulbis's breaking the 7-year string of double-digit-under-par winning totals last season).

So who do I think will excel this week?

1. Ochoa
2. Jang Jeong
3. Creamer
4. Tseng Ya Ni
5. Lee Seon Hwa
6. Choi Na Yeon
7. Shin Ji-Yai
8. Pettersen
9. Sorenstam
10. Ji Eun-Hee
11. Ueda Momoko
12. Han Hee-Won

Alts: Park Jane, Miyazato Ai, Hjorth

For more on the course, check out my 2007 preview; for more on the field, Golf Observer's historical stats can't be beat. And don't forget to tune into Evian Masters TV!

[Update 1 (9:03 pm): Hound Dog's preview is up--check out his critique of the Golf Channel's approach to rebroadcasting the event.]

[Update 2 (7/23/08, 4:02 am): Notice that Zinedine Zidane will be at the awards ceremony and playing in a charity football (that's soccer for us Americans!) match with some players and caddies on the 24th?]

[Update 3 (2:31 pm): Thanks to Golf Girl for the links! Next time in CT visiting my brother and his family, GG, we should get together for a quick 9!]

[Update 4 (6:32 pm): There's still time to submit your Pakpicker entry. Golf Observer has their patented performance chart up and running!]

[Update 5 (6:46 pm): Wow, according to this UK article, the LGU still hadn't made up their minds whether they were going to offer one of their "wild card" slots to the Women's British Open to Wie. They mistakenly thought she'd been invited to Evian and figured they could wait and see how she played there. Maybe if she hadn't been DQed in Springfield she'd be in Evian right now. That's one costly brain fart in the scorer's tent!]

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