Charlotte’s own Davis Love III will embark on another journey into the captaincy of the United States when he leads his team into the Presidents Cup. The 58-year-old already successfully steered the United States to victory in the 2016 Ryder Cup, regaining the trophy from European hands after three-straight defeats for the Stars and Stripes.
The USA have won the last eight tournaments and looked primed for further success in 2022 due to the quality of their line-up along with the critical absences felt by the International team ahead of the competition. If you bet on golf online you will not find value on the USA to win the tournament at odds of 1/6 compared to the 6/1 found on the International side to triumph.
Captain Trevor Immelman faces a major challenge to inspire his team to victory considering that he is without his best player in the form of Cameron Smith. The Australian was not considered for selection after he resigned from the PGA Tour to play in the LIV Golf Series.
Joaquin Niemann is also not available for the same reason, leaving Immelman without two of the top four players that qualified for the Presidents Cup for the standard of performances on the tour. It leaves Hideki Matsuyama as one of the standout options along with Adam Scott. As a result, the International team faces a major battle to avoid a heavy defeat to the USA, who are stacked with talent even with their own absentees due to the LIV Series.
Love will enter the tournament without Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, and Bryson DeChambeau. Despite these setbacks, he still has Scottie Scheffler, Patrick Cantlay, Xander Schauffele, Justin Thomas, and Tony Finau among his six confirmed starters and that’s without the options of Will Zalatoris, Collin Morikawa, and Jordan Spieth.
Love will be determined to win in his hometown at the Quail Hollow Club, although the USA were not overly dominant in their last outing in the Presidents Cup. The 58-year-old has to keep his players focused on the task at hand, despite the other distractions that may threaten to overshadow events on the course. Then there is also a complacency factor. The USA are overwhelming favorites to win the tournament, and that will fire up their opponents. The International team still have a lot of solid golfers and will be desperate to produce and upset to stun the home side.
The US will also have to deal with potential burnout of their key men. Scheffler has been in action throughout the year competing for the major crowns. He won The Masters with an outstanding performance to close out his first major, but further titles eluded him during the rest of the campaign, including the Tour Championship that he allowed to slip away with a poor final round. Cantlay, Finau, Morikawa, Thomas, and Schauffele have all been through tough slogs and may just be looking towards the end of the season rather than having their complete focus on the tournament.
It will be up to Love to ensure that does not happen along with finding the right combinations in the four balls and foursomes to bring success in the early stages of the Presidents Cup before the individual talent takes over in the singles. Everything is seemingly in the favor of the USA, but golf does not always go by the form book.