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PGA Championship 2018: 10 Possible Maiden Major Champions

This week the final major championship of the year takes place upon the fairways of Bellerive Country Club as the world's best golfers get ready to do battle at the 100th PGA Championship (or USPGA Championship if you would rather).

Each of the men teeing it up this week in Missouri is faced with one last opportunity in 2018 to etch their own name into the annals of golfing history by lifting the gargantuan 'Wanamaker Trophy'. Whoever emerges as the ultimate victor come Sunday evening will join a catalogue of golfing superstars in putting their name to a championship with over 100 years of golfing history.

After Francesco Molinari's stunning win at last month's Open Championship the golfing landscape seems ripe for another maiden major winner. Given this, and to help nudge you towards a possible champion, we thought we'd pull together a list of golfers who could make the 2018 PGA Championship their own maiden major title.

Here's what we've come up with...

Rickie Fowler

Until Rickie manages to get his first major title he will be right at the top of this list and you wouldn't get any arguments from us if you were to pick the talented world-number-nine as the 'best golfer without a major' as things stand in the golfing world.

Despite being without a win in 2018, Rickie has managed some impressive performances (not least a solo 2nd at The Masters) and we're seeing a more steady, controlled and, perhaps, under-the-radar player these days. If he can take the shackles off a little this week then there's every chance he could go one better than his showing at Augusta National back in April.

If he can harness his inner 458-yard driving self, he'll be on the right track...

Marc Leishman

A real standout 2017 has failed to carry over into this year's play but the big Aussie Mark Leishman has every attribute going to challenge for one of the major championships before too long.

He survived the 36-hole cut at each of the previous three majors of the year so far without ever truly threatening to take the win. A seasonal highlight thus far is no doubt the second round 67 at Augusta which was bettered only by eventual champion Patrick Reed.

Catch the stunning round highlights below...

Tommy Fleetwood

Would there be a more popular maiden major winner? Maybe Rickie (at a push) but Tommy Fleetwood is as likeable and impressive a golfer as exists on Tour at present - even the most passionate American fans have a soft spot for the lusciously-locked Englishman.

His level of play at present makes it almost guaranteed that he will feature in this week's PGA Championship; he's already managed a second-placed finish at Shinnecock Hills to go alongside a two-stroke victory in Abu Dhabi back in January.

There was a flawless 63 during Tommy's fourth round at the U.S. Open...

Jon Rahm

With five top-five finishes from this year's Masters forward, it's clear to see that Jon Rahm has most of the facets of his game right where he needs them to be at present.

More worryingly, back-to-back missed cuts at the two most recent majors have poured cold water on previous sky-high expectations for the prodigious Spaniard. With that said, anything is possible when Rahm is on song so watch this space.

He did manage to take his national open - the 2018 Open de Espana…

Tony Finau

Finau has been there or thereabouts on a few occasions already this season. He finished a highly respectable T-10 at Augusta National back in April before recording an even more impressive solo 5th at Shinnecock Hills back in June.

He's second only to world-number-one Dustin Johnson in Top-10 finishes this year on the PGA Tour and it's very possible that he could be threatening the upper reaches of the 2018 PGA Championship leaderboard.

Back on 'Masters Eve' the big American took a sickening fall. Catch a reminder below (if you dare)…

Paul Casey

Englishman Paul Casey has managed a top ten in each of the four majors in the men's game but is yet to get over the line in any tournament more prestigious than a World Golf Championship.

Having declared again for Europe, and given his intention to see out his European Tour obligations, we might see him at Le Golf National in September. We could also see him take one of the major championships in the not too distant future. Perhaps the 100th PGA Championship?

With a swing like this, anything's possible...

Alex Noren

Noren is one of the longest on Tour and has the game to be a feature in many major championships to come. Many view the Swede as a major-champion-in-waiting and he has shown form on both Tours this year with a win at the HNA Open de France and a third at the Honda Classic back in late February.

As well as his almost unrivalled length off the tee, Noren ranks fourth in strokes gained putting. This powerful combination is the very reason the world-number-13 has finished in a podium place on five separate occasions already in 2018.

Catch the final round highlights during his win at Le Golf National last month...

Xander Schauffele

If you didn't know much about this young Californian beforehand, it's very possible that his two wins in 2017 will have done much to bring him to your attention. It was certainly enough for the PGA Tour to name him as the 2017 Rookie of the Year.

Xander Schauffele is about as talented and in-form a golfer as you are likely to find on this list and he seems the man for the big occasion. In 2018 alone he has laid down impressive challenges at Carnoustie (T-2) and Shinnecock Hills (T-6) - while a T-2 at TPC Sawgrass at the season's 'unofficial fifth major' (The PLAYERS Championship) will not have gone unnoticed.

You can catch Xander's player profile below...

Kevin Kisner

Near misses at both the WGC Mexico Championship and last month's Open Championship has reminded us all of the undoubted talent Kisner possesses.

A number of missed cuts in between these impressive performances in higher-profile events suggests a lack of consistency, but it's clear to see that the two-time PGA Tour event champion needs only minor tweaks to his game to convert one of these tournament challenges before too long.

Here's a super slow-mo of KK's swing...

Luke List

Another player who won't be leaving much on the tee (ranks 4th in driving distance on PGA Tour), Luke List has several top-10s to his name in 2018 and has been focusing on his mental game to help bridge the gap to becoming a Tour winner.

That PGA Tour win still eludes the 33-year-old but there would be no better place to break your duck than at a major championship venue. Bellerive Country Club could be that very golf course.

Catch List discussing his newfound approach to his mental game...

Who do you think will be the next major maiden winner? Let us know below...

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