Garcia poised at Tampa Bay Championship
BY Bruce Young | US PGA Tour | 2013 Tampa Bay Championship | Preview | 13 Mar 2013
The PGA Tour moves to the west coast of Florida for this week’s Tampa Bay Championship presented by Everbank with Luke Donald chasing the defence of a title he won after a playoff over Korean Sang Bae Moon, Jim Furyk and Robert Garrigus.
The event has undergone several name changes since first played in 2000 but it has always been played at the Innisbrook Resort’s Copperhead layout at Palm Harbor near Tampa.
Off the back of his great run of recent form Sergio Garcia appears to be the favourite ahead of the defending champion, the Spaniard only once outside of the top twenty anywhere in his last twelve starts. While Garcia’s record at this venue has hardly been spectacular it has been solid enough to suggest a continuation of his great recent form.
Not only has Luke Donald won this event he did also finish 6th in his only other start in 2010. he has played sparingly in 2013 but appears to be warming to his task and might be a danger once again.
Matt Kuchar is in fine form of late including his great victory at the Accenture WGC event. He has done well enough in events he has played in at this venue and given his amazing consistency he deserves to be amongst the first chose as likely winners.
Adam Scott is peaking at the right time it would seem with Augusta National less than a month away, his third place finish last week very impressive given his limited play this year. Scott’s only issue this week is that he does not enjoy a good record at this venue having a best of 28th in four starts.
Jim Furyk does have a good record in this event having won and been runner-up previously. Furyk is playing well enough at present for him again to do well over the Copperhead layout.
Webb Simpson enjoys a good record in this event and appears to be finding the form that saw him as the US Open Champion last year. Simpson has been 10th, 2nd 13th in his last three starts at Copperhead.
Australians in the field in addition to Adam Scott in alphabetical order are Jason Day, Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Aaron Baddeley, Steven Bowditch, Greg Chalmers, Scott Gardiner, Matt Jones, Marc Leishman, Geoff Ogilvy, Cameron Percy, Alistair Presnell and John Senden.