Rory McIlroy, the world’s greatest golfer and favorite to topple Jack Nicklaus’s record of 19 majors, begins his 2015 this week in Abu Dhabi. He’ll then tee it up two weeks later at the Dubai Desert Classic.
This week’s field in Abu Dhabi is loaded. Besides Rory, there is Henrik Stenson, the world’s second-best player. World #6 Justin Rose will also be in the field, along with U.S. Open title holder Martin Kaymer.
Oh, and world #10 Rickie Fowler will be there. Like I said the field is packed. If this event were in the U.S, it would be getting a lot of coverage from the American media. Wait, no it wouldn’t. The American golf is too busy covering the Phoenix Open three or four weeks away because Tiger Woods is playing. He’s no. 34 in the world and hasn’t won a major in six years, so, yeah, of course he’s the only story for the American golf media.
Two English youngsters I can’t wait to see play are 23-year-old Eddie Pepperell and 20-year-old Matthew Fitzpatrick. You will recall Fitzpatrick was low amateur at last year’s U.S. Open, and the year before at the British Open.
I’ll also be keeping an eye on Alexander Levy, whom you will recall from last year’s second-best tournament. Tommy Fleetwood is also in the field; he has been playing solid golf and has very quietly worked his way up to world no. 52. It seems like he’s been around forever, but he’s only 23 years old. American Peter Uihlein is also playing.
There are many other rising and name players in the field, but, again, don’t expect to hear much about it from the American golf media. Just be sure to tune into the broadcasts come Wednesday night/Thursday morning and the following three days. Remember, the broadcast will have British announcers not American, and that is always a huge plus.