31 Mar 2022

2022 Masters – Who are the local golf community backing?

With the azaleas almost at full bloom Masters fever is starting to develop so we caught up with some of our friends from the local golf scene to find out who they’re backing to don the famous Green Jacket this year.

Jamie Coughlin – PGA Professional, Topgolf Dubai

I’m going with Collin Morikawa – he’s had a strong start to 2022 with multiple top 10 finishes. It’s no surprise when he was inside the top five in strokes gained on approach to the green and number one in total strokes gained in 2021

Olivia Jackson – LPGA Professional, Emirates Golf Club

I’d like to see someone like Viktor Hovland win it. He’s seen some form as of late and it was great to see him win the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic back in January. Someone who hasn’t won it before and is hungry for the win.

Ian Brennan – Head Golf Professional, The Track, Meydan

My pick for this year’s Masters is Xander Schauffele, having finished tied second in 2019, just a stroke behind a certain Mr. Woods and tied third in 2021, three shots behind Hideki Matsuyama. He clearly loves the place and I would expect a strong finish once again from him in 2022 off the back of recent good form in the Phoenix Open and Genesis Invitational.

Ahmad Skaik – Leading UAE Amateur

I think Jordan Spieth will do it this year. He’s in good form, he’s contending every week, and he’s done well at the Masters before. I think Augusta suits his game because his short game’s really good and if his putter is on, he’s on fire. So, I think he’s going to win. My favourite Masters memory is of course watching Tiger win again in 2019. What he went through, all the surgeries and all the ups and downs, to come back and win a Major again after all these years is just incredible. It shows that if someone keeps working, no matter what happens, or what anyone says, they can come back and they can do it.

Tom Nicholson – Operations Manager, The Els Club

My pick to win at Augusta this year is Viktor Hovland, Following on from his impressive win at the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic and his recent form on the PGA tour, it’s hard to look past Viktor for this year’s Masters. The fact he is yet to win a Major may hinder his chances slightly, but let’s not forget that it wouldn’t be the first time a reigning Dubai Desert Classic Champion goes on to win the Masters in the same season!

Min Woo Lee is my ‘one to watch. This will be Min Woo’s first Masters Tournament having broken into the world’s top 50 following an incredible season on the DP World Tour last season. Winning the tournament may be a stretch too far at the first attempt, but he will certainly be one to watch given his distance off the tee and the confidence he will have taken from his dramatic play-off win at last season’s Scottish Open.

Stuart McMurdo – Director of Golf, JA The Resort Golf Course

With so many players in form early in the season, l’m sure the Masters is going to be worth the late-night viewing once again. With three consecutive top tens at Augusta l think Jon Rahm has all the tools to win this year. It looks unlikely we’ll see a certain big cat returning, but let’s hope we get another thrilling finish. I will certainly be staying up to watch it unfold.

Jenny Hennessy – Founder Chicks With Sticks

I think (and hope!) Rory McIlroy will win the Masters and finally get the career Grand Slam. I’m a huge Rory fan, seeing him come so close to getting another win at this year’s Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic was honestly heart-wrenching, I feel confident that he has another big win coming his way very soon.

Danny Jakubowski – Group Director of Instruction, Troon Golf Abu Dhabi

Whilst my heart says Adam Scott and my head says Dustin Johnson I am going to predict a first time Major winner at this year’s Masters Tournament. Xander Schauffele is going to be this year’s Masters champion and I will tell you why. 1) He has had a modest and quiet start to the year but the last five tournaments have shown solid if unspectacular results. 2) He has come close several times in Majors notably second place to Tiger Woods in the 2019 Masters tournament and undoubtedly has the game to win. 3) The current reigning Gold Medallist from the 2020 Olympics hasn’t had much fanfare or spotlight. As the current no 8 ranked golfer in the world, Xander must be fancying his chances to get some more hardware and also some more recognition.

Karl Goodwin – PGA Professional, The Track, Meydan

My favourite for this year’s Masters is Bryson DeChambeau. He’s managed to change the game of golf for the better in my opinion and, although he hasn’t had his best form at Augusta, I think he might figure it out this year. He’s been quiet enough all year, going about his business, but I think this is the one he wants. If the putter heats up and he starts holing from distance I think he will have a great chance combining that with his length off the tee.  If I had to choose one more it would be Jordan Speith. He’s slowly coming into much better form with the putter which is the most important club to have hot for that week.

Alistair Brown – Head Professional, Emirates Golf Club

Jon Rahm for me.  He’s the best player by far right now. My favourite Masters memory? Watching Tiger win in 2019 at Emirates Golf Club after our Gorica Masters Championship was one of the best nights of the year!

Stuart Taylor –General Manager – Golf, Prosports International

This year I think Jordan Spieth will conquer again being a former Masters winner and coming into a run of form – no-one knows the course better. My outsider is Adam Scott after seeing him at the Slync.io Dubai Desert Classic. If he can get putter going he will for sure be a contender.

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