28th Apr 2014 | Golf
Quail Hollow has undergone extensive renovations since the players were here 12 month ago. The bentgrass greens have been relayed with Bermuda grass whilst there have been tweaks to the 4th, 16th and 17th holes. What hasn’t changed is the demanding finish. The closing three holes, nicknamed the ‘Green Mile’, are still a daunting prospect.
Before players can even think about the finish, there is the rest of a 7,442-yard course to negotiate. Fairways are amongst the hardest to hit on tour, with Quail Hollow ranking third lowest for driving accuracy in 2012.
Recent trends at the Wells Fargo Championship are strong.
Top-70 on tour for driving distance
Quail Hollow is a bomber’s course. Lucas Glover was the shortest hitter to win in the last five years and he still ranked 63rd on tour for driving distance.
Top-70 on tour for scoring average
The par 5s provide good scoring opportunities but there are bogeys lurking everywhere else. You have to play well to win, four of the last five champions ranked inside the top-70 on tour for adjusted scoring average.
Top-70 on tour for total driving
Quail Hollow had the third hardest fairways to hit on tour in 2012; accuracy is as important as length off the tee.
Top-70 on tour for ball striking
The test at Quail Hollow is tee to green. Recent winners like Rickie Fowler, Rory McIlroy and Sean O’Hair all won despite ranking outside the top-100 on tour for strokes gained putting.
Top-70 on tour for all-around ranking
Four of the last five winners ranked inside the top-70 for the PGA Tour’s ‘all-around-ranking’ which collates numerous metrics such as adjusted scoring, putting, GIRs and driving.
Players that fit all five trends:
Rory McIlroy 8/1 BetVictor
Hunter Mahan 50/1 Ladbrokes
Gary Woodland 50/1 Skybet
Matt Jones 66/1 William Hill
Jason Kokrak 80/1 BetVictor
Brendan Steele 125/1 William Hill
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