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20.06.2018 11:41
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Could we see a British or Irish winner at The Open this week? Ben Coley looks at the home contenders in action at Royal Troon Rory McIlroyTwo years ago McIlroy produced a measured final-round display to win The Open at Hoylake, undermining concerns that he would never get to grips with a kind of golf which doesnt necessarily play to his strengths. Diego Costa Jersey . Rory set for Bubba test Rory McIlroy will play alongside Bubba Watson and Hideki Matsuyama at The Open By his own admission, Rory is at his best when courses are longer and softer than is typically the case on the Scottish coast, but there is little doubt that his brilliance means he can win any time, any place. Here are all the ways to watch The Open with Sky Sports Having been forced to miss last years Open due to an injury, McIlroy will be eager to make up for lost time and his preparation has been solid, third place in the Open de France demonstrating that his missed cut in the US Open was a mere blip.If the weather plays fair and McIlroy gets off to a good start he could well be a factor, but his advantage over the rest is negated when the wind blows, which would have to be the primary concern for his backers. Get a Sky Sports Pass Dont miss The Open. Watch live on NOW TV for £10.99. No contract. Justin RoseIts incredible to think that we are nearly 20 years on from a fresh-faced Rose bursting onto the scene with a top-five finish in The Open as an amateur.What is even more incredible is that Rose has played in this championship 13 times since without yet matching that tie for fourth at Birkdale and part of the reason is that his high ball-flight isnt particularly suited to links golf, while his occasional short-game woes are also problematic when it comes to chipping from the tight lies we will see at Troon. Justin Rose missed the US Open through injury Still, this is a major champion were talking about and Rose did produce his best effort since Birkdale when sixth at St Andrews last year.Since then he has generally continued to play the consistent, competitive golf weve grown used to but a back injury sustained in the spring has resulted in a low-key preparation. Open on Sky Ways to watch the Open live on Sky Lee WestwoodOne of the greatest players in the game never to have won a major, perhaps Westwood will feel that The Open still offers him his best chance of changing that. Lee Westwood has already impressed in the opening two majors of the year It was at this tournament in 2013 that he led with nine holes to play, after all, and just down the coast at Turnberry where he narrowly missed out in 2009. Certainly, a bit of experience and Westwoods trademark accuracy goes a long way on a links course like Troon, where he was fourth in 2004.It is also worth noting that Westwoods close friend Darren Clarke was 42 when he finally landed his first major title in this event five years ago, so the 43-year-old need not look far for inspiration.Having contended in both the Masters and the US Open this year, Westwood appears to have every chance of being in the mix once more come the weekend.Danny WillettThe reigning Masters champion is a big price at 50/1 if you consider that hes ranked ninth in the world, ahead of every UK player bar McIlroy, and contended at St Andrews last year. Danny Willett has struggled for form since his Augusta victory But like so many before him, Willett appears to be struggling to adjust to his new, elevated status as a major winner, with missed cuts in France and Germany providing a less-than-ideal preparation for the seasons third major.Willett did play reasonably well in the US Open to finish 37th and was third at Wentworth before that, so its been an up-and-down few months which has involved plenty of off-course commitments, but its rare for a player to miss two cuts in the run-up to The Open and go on to win.Shane LowryThe man who so easily could have won the US Open but for a disappointing final round, Lowry has understandably struggled to shake off events at Oakmont in his two starts since. Shane Lowry suffered an early exit in his last start The Irishman finished 36th in the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, a no-cut, small-field event which hed won the year before, and then missed the cut in the Scottish Open last week on a course which he should have suited nicely.On the plus side, this is a player who burst onto the scene with a win when still an amateur in miserable conditions at the Irish Open, while he was ninth in this event in 2014 and has become a regular feature towards the top of major leaderboards.Troon will suit and perhaps Lowry will be all the more eager to prove a point after a near-miss in the US Open.Russell KnoxThe pick of the Scottish challenge, Knox arrives at Troon on the back of a solid week in the Scottish Open at Castle Stuart, which represented a homecoming for the Inverness man.Although he missed the cut on his Open debut last year, Knox has since come a long way, winning a World Golf Championship and contending on a regular basis in the US.Keen to force his way into the Ryder Cup picture, Knox needs a big week here if hes to do so and his tidy game, which shows few weaknesses, means he could just manage it.Best of the rest...Matthew Fitzpatrick Matthew Fitzpatrick is hoping to boost his Ryder Cup qualification hopes this week Without doubt one of the brightest young talents in world golf, Fitzpatrick will be keen to return to the form which saw him register a top-10 finish in the Masters before winning in Sweden.Chris WoodTwo top-five finishes in The Open and a win earlier this year in the BMW PGA Championship mark Chris Wood out as one to watch at a big price.Andrew Johnston Andrew Johnston missed the cut in his last appearance in 2011 The man they call Beef has enjoyed a fantastic season, breaking through for his first European Tour win, and that came in difficult conditions. Johnston will relish this opportunity and his stellar ball-striking could take him a long way.Callum ShinkwinA former English Amateur champion, Shinkwin is really finding his feet on the European Tour and qualified for The Open with a fine performance in France. A huge talent to watch for the future - even if this is too much, too soon. Richie RamsayA last-minute qualifier courtesy of a brilliant final-round in the Scottish Open, Ramsay is a known links lover who goes well in tough conditions - as long as hes not too hard on himself. Accurate and tough, he could spring a surprise.Colin Montgomerie Colin Montgomerie makes his first Open appearance since 2010 It was here at Troon that Montgomerie played a lot of golf as a youngster, when his dad was club secretary, and hes been given the honour of getting the tournament under way. His course knowledge will be a huge help.Paul DunneTied for the lead with 18 holes to play at St Andrews, Dunne had a chance to win The Open as an amateur last year. Unsurprisingly it was too much but this talented youngster has since earned a European Tour card and is one to watch. Matthew SouthgateThere wont be a dry eye in the house if Southgate manages to contend on Sunday, almost a year to the day since he was diagnosed with cancer. Matthew Southgate posted a career-best finish in Ireland in May Its been an incredible return to the European Tour for the Southend man, who got healthy, got his card back and played his way into form before finishing in the top five in Ireland two months ago.Watch The Open throughout the week live on Sky Sports - your new home of The Open - or from £10.99 on NOW TV, no contract. Also See: Ways to watch The Open Rory set for Bubba test The Open latest news Golf live on Sky Sports Sergio Busquets Jersey . Raymond, 31, started 15 regular-season games for the Stamps in 2013, racking up 51 tackles. He also returned two kickoffs for 79 yards including a 61-yarder. Dani Carvajal Jersey .Former NBA forward Morris Peterson has been added to TSNs Toronto Raptors broadcast team. . TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie tweeted that its believed the Flames are working towards a new contract with the (@WheelerTSN) As far as first impressions go, new-look Toronto FC delivered with rave reviews against the rave green of the Sounders in Seattle Saturday. A 2-1 victory in a tough venue against a difficult opponent eases potential early season tension. There was nervous energy among many Toronto FC staffers and front office making the trip west how their considerable investment would come together from the get-go. Its just one victory and theres a marathon ahead, but this one impressive, combative victory has kept the narrative positive. A disappointing performance/loss would have brought out same old TFC critics. Its one thing to make headlines; its another to keep them. The buzz is real. Theres a whole lot to like re-visiting Torontos season opening win. Here are five thoughts on the victory. 1) Defoe MLS Player of the Week – A dream debut brace by Jermain Defoe earned MLS Player of the Week honours, global headlines and most importantly three points. This is what Major League Soccer wants from their star, big money designated players: results and instant eye balls. TSN did big numbers on television and radio boding well for this weekends home opener against DC United (TSN 1050 Radio/TSN). Defoe did what top goal scorers do – three meaningful touches and two goals in the first 24 minutes set the tone. He didnt have to be a big part of the proceedings to leave his mark. The Sounders dominated possession to the tune of 68%. Defoe was a factor every time he was on and around the ball. Unlike ever before, TFC can be a danger on the counter with a proven difference maker in front of goal. Superior possession will come for Toronto. There were six new players in the starting XI and the difficulty playing on turf against a quality side cannot be understated. A consistent effort keeping the ball on the deck will be essential for Defoe to become an absolute force. His movement off the ball is slick and his ability to play off the back shoulder of a defender was key on the first goal. Based on initial returns, its not too much to expect upwards of 20 goals on the season from Defoe. Forget the long, high ball – give Defoe the service and reap the rewards. 2) Bradley Man of the Match – Defoe may have won Player of the Week, and its understandable, but we on the radio side crowned centre-midfielder Michael Bradley Man of the Match. Thats not to downplay Defoes contributions. Goal scorers get the glory. Bradley set the tone. Bradleys performance was all action, all over the field and of the highest quality. Bradley fell deep in defence in the early stages, recognizing the need to help his back-line as the three Sounders attacking midfielders were finding themselves in dangerous positions finding space between TFCs back and midfield four. After the first ten minutes and with the shape solidified, Bradley started flying about the pitch, putting all kinds of high pressure on the ball. He was winning tackles, forcing mistakes and maintaining a high tempo. Bradley, alongside Jonathan Osorio won the battle in the middle of the park and allowed the two TFC strikers to remain high and a constant nuisance on the counter. The American International is strong and quick, and not to be overlooked, his distribution was outstanding at CenturyLink Field. His deadball striking, whether on corners or free kicks, was spot on. Nothing was wasted. Many MLS analysts were quick to say Toronto over-spent bringing Bradley back to North America and chastised the club for paying so much for a central midfielder. For TFC, its about winning football matches. With Bradley dictating the tone, they are in good stead. A standout performance, through and through from Torontos number four. 3) Nelsen Adjustments – The superior work-rate of his players was the bright spot in an otherwise frustrating first year for head coach Ryan Nelsen. Theres no question Nelsen is a natural leader and his players willl play for him. Pepe Reina Spain Jersey. The tactical side is where many raise questions about his approach. Game one of season two was a very astutely coached match by the manager, pulling the proper strings throughout. Nelsens team will sink or swim in a 4-4-2 formation. Other than a hectic spell towards the end of the first half, Nelsen kept both strikers in high, trusting his team shape. It worked. Nelsen switched Alvaro Rey from left to right wing with Jackson moving to the other side 10 minutes into the match to find proper balance and match-ups. It was an important change both defensively and attack-wise. The shifty Spaniard Rey exposed the inexperience of young left-back Dylan Remick finding space down the flank. Jackson proved a better match as well against the talented DeAndre Yedlin, who didnt get down the wing nearly as much as Remick. The move stabilized the midfield, particularly in attack. A wide-open Jackson down the left served as a decoy on the 1-0 goal, and Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei denied Rey after running wild down the right flank. Nelsen got his substitutions bang on as well. Fresh legs of Andrew Wiedeman came on in the 63 for Dwayne De Rosario, not sacrificing or changing the shape in the team. The Sounders continued to press down their left flank, so a fatigued Rey (who was on a caution) made way for right-back Bradley Orr in the 65 minute, shifting Jackson back to the left, and Mark Bloom into the midfield. Bloom and Orr struggled with the constant Sounders attack, but it was the right call to make. And Ashtone Morgan as a late change killed the clock and was a no-brainer. Nelsens formation relies on a strong spine, and the players down the middle of the park shined for their manager. It is just one game, but a criticism-free match for the Nelsen is well deserved. These are important games in the early stages, as much for the players as the manager to reinforce confidence and develop proper role definition in the team. 4) Canadian Quality – 20-year old Canadian centre-back Doniel Henry played his 50th game in MLS and was absolutely solid. Henry continues to grow into his footballing body and has every quality necessary to excel at this level and beyond. Henry showed superior patience to last season and was consistently in good positions of support, winning critical balls in dangerous areas. His partnership with captain Steven Caldwell is all-important to sustained success. Previously mentioned centre-midfielder Osorio was likewise influential alongside Bradley. There is a smoothness and confidence to the 21-year old. Multiple times he was seen barking instructions to more experienced players, understanding the responsibility in the position he plays. The service on Defoes opener was superb, looking off Yedlin before sliding a perfectly weighted ball through to Defoe. Jackson was the easy pass, Defoe was the right one. Osorio playing at this level softens the blow of losing Matias Laba through trade to Vancouver. 5) Depth Discussion – Gilberto (hip flexor) and Jeremy Hall (hamstring) didnt make the trip to Seattle, but its concerning how little proven depth TFC has at present time. Bloom looked out of sorts in the midfield. Canadian midfielder Issey Nakajima-Farran is set to join the team and may add some quality down the wing, that remains to be seen. If he cant, TFC is paper-thin at the outside midfield positions. Where to play De Rosario is another question. When Gilberto returns, does De Rosario serve as a third striker? Or does he move back into the midfield? For all the effort Wiedeman brings, its unclear whether he can be a consistent scoring threat. General Manager Tim Bezbatchenko insists the team has flexibility against the cap. If so, the team will be on the lookout for help in midfield and attack. Toronto FCs Home Opener from BMO Field airs this Saturday on TSN and TSN 1050 Radio. Television - 4pm pre-match/430pm kick-off. Radio - 330pm pre-match. China Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap Wholesale NFL T-shirts Cheap Jerseys Free Shipping Wholesale Black NFL Jerseys Stitched NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys China ' ' '

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