2022 PGA Championship Preview, Picks and Tee Times
Here at Hole19 HQ, we're buzzing for the season's second major as the 2022 PGA Championship is set to get underway at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
After Scottie Scheffler's faultless performance at last month's Masters Tournament, the world's best golfers arrive at the scene of Tiger Woods' 13th major title back in 2007 and are primed to do battle for the right to hoist the Wanamaker Trophy come Sunday.
We're all hoping for another great spectacle and to help whet your appetite even further, check out our preview, picks and a list of selected tee times below.
Venue: Southern Hills
Length: 7,365 yards
Southern Hills has hosted the PGA Championship on four other occasions - 1970, 1982, 1994 and 2007 and the course is now around 350 yards longer than the test the field faced 15 years ago.
A renovation in 2019 by Gill Hanse led to the removal of numerous trees, the rebuilding of all 18 greens, every bunker was reconstructed, fairway bunkers were repositioned, and numerous holes were lengthened. Accuracy is absolutely essential, with water in play on all but three holes.
Solid iron play will be a must with quite a few of the greens being elevated and heavily protected by greenside bunkers. Any golfers who manage to avoid the nasty sandtraps could easily find one of the many collection areas which lie in wait to snag any errant golf shots.
2021 Champion - Phil Mickelson
At the 2021 PGA Championship, Phil Mickelson did the unthinkable by rolling back the years and becoming the oldest major champion in the game.
Ranked 115th in the world and without a top 10 in his last 16 starts, Mickelson arrived at Kiawah Island with little more than a puncher's chance but finished the week by hoisting the Wanamaker Trophy for the second time in his illustrious career.
Main talking points
Every which way you turn, there's another possible storyline brewing ahead of the 104th PGA Championship.
Due to the ongoing controversy surrounding Phil Mickelson, he has decided to give the 104th PGA Championship a miss. In doing so, he becomes just the third PGA champion not to defend his title - after Tiger Woods in 2008 and Ben Hogan in 1949.
On a more positive note, Tiger will be returning to take another shot at major glory in his first appearance since The Masters back in April. It remains to be seen how he will fare, but the 15-time major champion has told the world's media that "everything is feeling better" than at Augusta.
All eyes will be also on Scottie Scheffler to see if he can follow up on his impressive 2022 Masters win and consolidate his position at the summit of the Official World Golf Rankings.
And then there's another tilt at the career grand slam for Jordan Spieth.
Almost five years have passed since he claimed the Claret Jug at the 2017 Open Championship at Royal Birkdale and now after a previous period of un-Spieth-like golf, the Texan is back inside the world's top ten, and will look to go one better than his runner-up spot back in 2015.
Other questions to be answered: Will this be the week Rory McIlroy recaptures his major form? Could Collin Morikawa contend at a course seemingly tailor-made for impressive iron players? And what about Jon Rahm? We haven't even discussed his credentials yet. Many expect a massive week for the former world number one.
And although we've been talking up the chances of the main high-ranking players, could we get a champion straight out of left field?
We can't wait to find out!
Our players to watch
As far as possible winners go, here are three players we think could go very close this week.
With the PGA coming hot on the heels of the current world number 1's impressive showing at Augusta National - still his last outing - it would be remiss of us not to select Scheffler as our first pick.
It beggars belief that he won four in a span of six tournaments in the space of just 57 days, and there's no apparent reason he won't continue that streak this week.
Scheffler's PGA Championship record is pretty strong, too. He came fourth on debut in 2020 at Harding Park and followed up with a top-10 finish last year at Kiawah Island.
With rumours circulating that he played Southern Hills recently and shot a six-under 64, everything points towards another strong showing and the chance of two major titles in little over a month.
While Viktor Hovland's form has tailed off a little over recent weeks, let's not forget he finished 2021 like a man possessed - and started this year in much the same vein.
In a little over a month, the young Norweigan managed a win in the Dubai Desert Classic, a T-4 in the Genesis Invitational, a T-2 in Arnold Palmer Invitational, and a top 10 in The Players at Sawgrass. That form demands attention.
If he can have a good week around the greens, there's every chance Hovland could be bang in the mix late on Sunday.
The super-consistent Shane Lowry seems to be gradually getting to grips with the PGA Championship. After finishing 12th in 2018, eighth in 2019 and fourth last year, the trend has been set for a serious challenge from the Irishman at Southern Hills.
After an impressive showing at Augusta National back in April (T-3), Lowry has since consolidated that form by finishing just one stroke behind Patrick Cantlay and the eventual playoff victor, Jordan Spieth, at the RBC Heritage.
Technique and imagination around the greens could be a real difference maker, and few golfers have a better short game than the 2019 Open Champion.
R1 Tee Times
Thursday’s selected tee times (all times BST)
1338 Xander Schauffele, Hideki Matsuyama, Tony Finau
1411 Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth
1500 Viktor Hovland, Will Zalatoris, Cameron Smith
1903 Shane Lowry, Brooks Koepka, Adam Scott
1914 Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay
1936 Collin Morikawa, Jon Rahm, Scottie Scheffler
You can get a full list of R1 tee times here.