Philip Reid’s lowdown: Genesis Invitational

There are eight players from the world’s top-10 competing including Rory McIlroy

Neither Jack Nicklaus nor Tiger Woods ever managed to win at Riviera. File photograph: Getty Images

Neither Jack Nicklaus nor Tiger Woods ever managed to win at Riviera. File photograph: Getty Images

 

Purse: €7.75 million (€1.4m to the winner)
Where: Los Angeles, California
The course: Riviera Country Club - 7,322 yards Par 71 - is a classic course originally designed by George C Thomas Jnr and William P Bell, although Ben Crenshaw and design partner Bill Coore conducted upgrading in the 1990s. Located in the Santa Monica Canyon, and a short distance away from Sunset Boulevard, the iconic course has an association with the PGA Tour dating back to its first staging of the LA Open in 1929 and Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson and Sam Snead are among the roll of honour of winners. The fourth hole was reckoned by none other than Hogan to be the “best Par 3 in America.”

The field: A stellar field at the invitational tournament, which is headed by world number one Dustin Johnson. In fact, there are eight players from the world’s top-10 competing including current Major champions: Johnson (Masters), DeChambeau (US Open), Morikawa (US PGA). The depth of the field is reflected in an official world rankings strength of 613 (68 points to the winner). Adam Scott is the defending champion.

Quirky fact: For all of their dominance in different generations, Jack Nicklaus never managed to win at Riviera (his best finish as runner-up in 1978) while Tiger Woods, the tournament host but not playing this year as he recovers from surgery, has also failed to win at the venue (with a best finish of runner-up in 1999).

Quote-Unquote: “The course is, for the setup and just having no real OB or hazards anywhere on the property, really difficult. I think all of us appreciate the challenge” - Xander Schauffele, the world number four, who has gone 5-2-2 in his three outings on tour so far this year.

Irish in the field: Rory McIlroy is in a group with US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau and Cameron Champ (off the first, 7.43pm Irish time); Pádraig Harrington tees off from the 10th alongside Brian Stuard and Russell Henley (8.38pm Irish time).

Betting: Dustin Johnson, a winner in 2017, is the market leader but, even allowing for his love of the course, seems a bit tight at 11/2. Xander Schauffele has struggled to close the deal in his last two tournaments but two runner-up finishes indicate his form and he looks well priced at 14/1, while Joaquin Niemann, who also has two runner-up finishes so far this year, is a tempting each-way at 35/1.

On TV: Live on Sky Sports from 7pm (Featured groups from 2.45pm).

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.