World Golf Championship matches we can’t wait to watch

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Three days of round-robin matchplay kick off in San Francisco on today as the new home of Harding Park hosts the year’s second World Golf Championship. 

Players from 16 groups will square off at Harding Park on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (96 matches in total), vying for a spot in Saturday’s 16.

Here’s a glimpse at some of today’s most interesting matches:

McIlroy vs. Dufner. While Dufner’s play this year has been largely pedestrian, the Northern Irishman’s record in the WGC-Match Play is not exactly dominant, with just two trips to the weekend in six starts.  

Jordan Spieth vs. Mikko Ilonen. Ilonen, the 68th player in the world who was a last-minute replacement for Phil Mickelson, faces one of the day’s toughest matches. 

Adam Scott vs. Francesco Molinari. Though Scott still seems stuck between putters (to anchor, or not to anchor), Molinari has been on the DL since injuring his wrist earlier this season and just started hitting golf balls again last Friday. 

Henrik Stenson vs. John Senden. Stenson hasn’t picked up a club since the Masters and still appears under the weather after a bout with the flu. Could it be a big upset? 

Bubba Watson vs. Miguel Angel Jimenez. One is a fifty-something, cigar-smoking wine connoisseur and the other is a bomber. Jimenez was born for match play.

Rickie Fowler vs. Harris English. Rickie will be the crowd favorite, always is, but English seems poised for a big week following a stellar run last year in his first WGC-Match Play when he beat Lee Westwood in Round 1 and McIlroy on Day 2. 

Graeme McDowell vs. Shane Lowry. Two years ago Lowry stunned McIlroy in Round 1 and was eventually dispatched by McDowell in the third round. These two are good pals.  

Ian Poulter vs. Webb Simpson. A rematch of last year’s Ryder Cup Sunday singles duel which ended in a tie.  

Victor Dubuisson vs. Charl Schwartzel. Though his play since last year’s WGC-Match Play final has not been as electrifying, Dubuisson was a finalist last year, making those ridiculous up and downs from the cactus. 

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