Rory McIlroy (NI) and Scottie Scheffler (USA) look to be strong contenders to make it through to the final 16 today (Friday) in the $20 million WGC – DELL Technologies Matchplay in Austin Texas.
In their second round robin matches McIlroy beat Denny McCarthy (USA) by two holes in Group 3 and Scheffler beat Alex Noren (SWE) 5&4 in Group 1.
Today (Friday) sees the final round robin matches with all the Group winners progressing to the knockout matches over the weekend with the champion playing seven matches in total, a further two matches on both Saturday and Sunday.
Adrian Meronk (POL), after his day one victory over Kurt Kitayama (USA) lost 4&3 to Tony Finau (USA), the overall number 10 seed in the tournament, and has a tough task progressing, which is out of his hands as he plays Christiaan Bezuidenhout (RSA) in his final round robin match, who has lost both his matches to date.
Finau is a dangerous player in match play, which he showed on Thursday against first-timer Meronk. Finau was one up standing on the ninth tee, then reeled off five consecutive birdies. Included was a nice up-and-down from standing on the railroad sleepers at the 13th to go three up, and he added his seventh birdie of the day to end the match at 15. In four previous WGC-Dell Match Play starts, Finau never has made it out of his pool. Finau can advance with a win over Kurt Kitayama on Friday.
Plenty is at stake for most of the players still in with a chance of qualifying with favourites to progress being the double winners so far: Andrew Putnam (Group 7), Cam Young (Group 15), Taylor Montgomery (Group 12), Max Homa (Group 5), Sam Burns (Group 13), Patrick Cantlay (Group 4), Jason Day (Group 9), SW Kim (Group 8), JT. Poston (Group 16), JJ. Spaun (Group 11), Xander Schauffler (Group 6), Lucas Herbert (Group 14), as well as McIlroy and Scheffler.