Shinnecock Hills Golf Course plays host this week to the 118th edition of the United States Open Championship. Last year, Brooks Keopka’s -16 total was good enough for a 4 stroke win over Brian Harman and Hideki Matsuyama.
As is the case with all major golf championships, the U.S. Open boasts one of the toughest fields in golf, and one of the most difficult tournaments to enter. A vast majority of the field gains entry via Local and Sectional qualifying.
Phil's Window is Shrinking
The last time the U.S. Open was played at Shinnecock was in 2004, where Retief Goosen captured his second U.S. Open title over runner-up Phil Mickelson, who had just won his first major championship at the Masters earlier that Spring. This time around, lefty is still chasing the elusive title along with the Career Grand Slam. After missing last year's Open for his daughter's graduation, all eyes will be on the aging Mickelson, who turns 48 on Saturday.
Rickie Still Seeking First Major
With fields as deep as they are nowadays, just about anyone can win this week, and there are still several notable players vying for their first major championship trophy. At the top of the list is Rickie Fowler, who led after the first round in last year's U.S. Open. The five-time PGA Tour winner has come close in majors before. Can this be the week he finds the magic and earns major glory?
Third Australian U.S. Open Champion Possibilities
It's hard to believe that despite the strong presence of Australian golf at the highest level for generations, there have only been two Australians who have won America's national championship: David Graham in 1981 and Geoff Ogilvy in 2006. There are four Australians in the top 100 in the Official World Golf Rankings; two of them have won a major (Jason Day and Adam Scott) and the other two have won on the PGA Tour (Mark Leishman and Cameron Smith). There's no doubt any of these four players have what it takes to win at Shinnecock Hills, and the week could be a big one for Australian golf.
About the Course
Shinnecock Hills Golf Course is a links-style course located on Long Island, east of New York City. This is the fourth U.S. Open it has hosted, along with a Walker Cup and the U.S. Men's and Women's Amateur. An extremely challenging course, anything around even par is going to have a chance to win.