PGA: Golf Glance: Viktor Hovland seeks rare 3-peat at Mayakoba
Field Level Media’s Golf Glance provides weekly news and storylines from each of the major North American golf tours.
LAST TOURNAMENT: Butterfield Bermuda Championship (Seamus Power)
THIS WEEK: World Wide Technologies Championship at Mayakoba, Riviera Maya, Mexico, Nov. 3-6
Course: El Camaleon Golf Course at Mayakoba (Par 71, 7,034 yards)
Purse: $8.2M (Winner: $1.476M)
Defending Champion: Victor Hovland
FedEx Cup leader: Keegan Bradley
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Thursday-Saturday, 3-6 p.m. ET; Sunday, 2-5 p.m. (All times Golf Channel)
NOTES: Hovland is seeking to become the first player to win the same PGA Tour event in three consecutive years since Steve Stricker at the John Deere Classic from 2009-11. He set the tournament scoring record of 261 in last year’s win. … The winning score at Mayakoba has averaged 20 under since 2013. … Two of the par-3s at El Camaleon Golf Course ranked among the five easiest on Tour last season, and the last three times a player has made a hole-in-one on the first hole of a tournament have come on No. 10. … The four players from Mexico in the field are each competing on a sponsors invite: Isidro Benitez, Armando Favela, Jose de Jesus Rodriguez and Sebastian Vazquez. … Other sponsors exemptions include Harry Higgs and University of Texas star Travis Vick, who is sixth in the PGA tour University Ranking. Vick, who finished T43 at this year’s U.S. Open, will also tee it up at next week’s Houston Open.
BEST BETS: World No. 2 Scottie Scheffler (+900 at BetMGM) would regain the No. 1 ranking with a win or solo second place this week. … Hovland (+1100) has won all three of his PGA Tour titles outside of the United States, with his other coming at the 2020 Puerto Rico Open, and also won last year’s Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas. He has finished T5 and T21 in two previous starts this season. … Collin Morikawa (+1600) is making his tournament debut and third start of the season. He said this week that “he came here to win” and that “the game’s feeling good.” … Tony Finau (+1800) is making his season debut. He’s coming off a length break but has two wins and four top-10s in his past five starts. … Emiliano Grillo (+3300) will make his eighth consecutive event start and has three previous top-10s. He also has a pair of top 10s in five starts this season. … Tour rookie Thomas Detry (+4000) is coming off a solo second place in Bermuda and is No. 7 in the FedEx Cup standings…. Power (+5000) captured his first PGA Tour title last week.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Houston Open, Nov. 10-13
LAST TOURNAMENT: BMW Ladies Championship (Lydia Ko)
THIS WEEK: Toto Japan Classic, Shiga, Japan, Nov. 3-6
Course: Seta Fold Course, Shiga, Japan
Defending Champion: Ai Suzuki (2019)
Race to the CME Globe leader: Ko
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Wednesday-Thursday, 11 p.m.-2 a.m. ET; Friday, 11:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m.; Saturday, 11 p.m-2 a.m. (All times Golf Channel)
Streaming: Wednesday-Thursday, 10 p.m.-2 a.m.; Friday, 10:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m.; Saturday, 10 p.m.-2 a.m. (All times NBCSports.com and NBC Sports App).
NOTES: This is the 49th edition of the event and the 13th playing at the Seta Golf Course. The tournament is co-sanctioned with the JLPGA at a 72-hole event for the first time, with the 78-player field including 78 LPGA Tour players and 36 JLPGA players. The event was contested the past two years as a JLPGA event due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. … The purse has been increased by $500,000 from 2019. … Atthaya Thitikul is in the field after taking over the No. 1 ranking from Jin Young Ko, who is continuing to recover from a wrist injury. … Nasa Hataoka, the 2018 winner, is one of four LPGA Tour players teeing it up in their home country along with Hinako Shibuno, Yuka Saso and Ayaka Furue, who won the event last year.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Pelican Women’s Championship, Belleair, Fla., Nov. 10-13
LAST TOURNAMENT: Dominion Energy Classic (Steven Alker)
THIS WEEK: Timber Tech Championship, Boca Raton, Fla., Nov. 4-6
Course: Royal Palm Yacht & Country Club (Par 72, 7,015 yards)
Purse: $2.2M (Winner: $350,000)
Defending Champion: Alker
Charles Schwab Cup leader: Alker
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Friday-Saturday, 6:30-9:30 p.m. ET; Sunday, 6-9 p.m. (All times tape delayed on Golf Channel)
NOTES: This is the second leg of the three event playoffs and the first time it will be held at the Royal Palm Yacht & Country Club. The 54-player field will compete in a 54-hole event, with the top 36 after this week qualifying for the Charles Schwab Cup Championship. … Alker, who holes a 749,960-point advantage over Padraig Harrington, has a mathematical chance to become only the third player to clinch the championship before the final event.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Charles Schwab Cup Championship, Phoenix, Nov. 7-13
–Field Level Media