Matsuyama 16/1 For Muirfield Victory

Golf Preview: Matsuyama 16/1 For Muirfield Victory

2017-06-01
A preview of the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village on the PGA Tour.

Former champion Hideki Matsuyama is hoping a return to the site of his first PGA Tour victory will help him rediscover the scintillating golf he produced at the end of 2016.

After finishing fifth in the Tour Championship last season, Matsuyama won four of his next six events and was runner-up in the other two, with three of the wins coming in succession in China, Japan and the Bahamas.

Matsuyama then claimed his fourth PGA Tour title in a play-off in Phoenix in February and, although he has missed just one halfway cut in 2017, the 25-year-old has not been happy with his form since.

"It has been an up-and-down year," the world number four told a press conference ahead of the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village in which he is priced at 16/1 to win.

"Hopefully I'm on the upswing but to be honest my swing isn't where I'd like it to be and I'm not putting very well.

"But coming back to Muirfield Village, there are some special vibes here and hopefully that will encourage me to play much better than I have been the last couple of months.

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"I putted well up until about February of this year. Since then I haven't putted like I would like to and so I've been practising a lot with the centre-shaft putter, hoping to find something, to find a good feeling, to find something that suits me.

“But unfortunately I haven't and so I've gone back to my previous putter this week and hopefully that will wake up and do some good."

Six of the world's top 10 are in the field at Muirfield Village, although world number two Rory McIlroy is absent with a rib injury and 2010 winner Justin Rose was a late withdrawal on Sunday as he focuses on the upcoming US Open.

Dustin Johnson is the 6/1 favourite with Jon Rahm and Jordan Spieth, who both finished one shot off the lead in the Dean and Deluca Invitational at the weekend, at 11/1 and 12/1 respectively.

Kevin Kisner, victorious in Texas, is 30/1 and 6/1 for a top-five finish with Jason Day 14/1 and Adam Scott 25/1.