The European Tour heads to Wentworth this week for their flagship event, the BMW PGA Championship. Find out how to watch, and who to back
An incredibly strong field heads to Wentworth this week for the European Tour’s flagship event of the season, the BMW PGA Championship.
Defending champion Francesco Molinari returns to the Rolex series event with last year’s runner-up and World No.2 Rory McIlroy, in addition to a host of American starts including Tony Finau, Patrick Reed and Billy Horschel.
Also making their debut this week is rising star Viktor Hovland, who tied the PGA Tour record for 17 consecutive rounds in the 60s at the The Greenbrier on Sunday, as well as Open Champion Shane Lowry and World top 20 players Justin Rose (4), Jon Rahm (6), Paul Casey (13) and Tommy Fleetood (16).
However, Justin Rose is a bit of an injury doubt for the tournament, having withdrawn from Wednesday’s Pro-AM with a knee injury.
“Last Thursday I slipped and jarred my knee,” said Rose. “Since then I have been getting treatment on the injury and have been working to ensure I am able to play in this week’s #BMWPGA. Unfortunately, I have to withdraw from Wednesday’s Pro-Am as a precaution.”
So who should you back? Find out below.
Course: Wentworth West Course, Par 72 (7,284 yards)
Prize Fund: $7,000,000
Race to Dubai Points: 7,000
Defending Champion: Francesco Molinari
Course Record: 62, Alex Noren (‘17)
HOW TO WATCH: BMW PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
• Wednesday: Live Golf, Sky Sports Main Event (16:00), Sky Sports Golf (16:00)
• Thursday: Sky Sports Golf (09:00), Sky Sports Main Event (10:30)
• Friday: Sky Sports Golf (10:00), Sky Sports Main Event (11:20), Sky Sports Main Event (15:20)
• Saturday: Sky Sports Golf (12:00)
• Sunday: Sky Sports Golf (12:00)
BETTING TIPS: BMW PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
Rory McIlroy: 5/1
McIlroy is making his 10th appearance at Wentworth and has mixed success here – although that does include victory in 2014 and a runner-up finish last year. The World No.2 won the FedEx Cup, and followed it up with a runner-up finish at the Omega European Masters. Leads the PGA Tour stats for scoring average, SG: Tee to green and SG: Off the tee, as well as 2nd for birdie average, 12th SG: Approach, 19th SG: Around the green and 24th SG: Putting.
Jon Rahm: 9/1
A T13 at the Tour Championship was Rahm’s worst finish in his last eight starts on either Tour, including victory at the Irish Open and five other top 10s. Making his debut here this week. Ranks 5th SG: Off the tee, 6th for both scoring average and birdie average on the PGA Tour, 10th SG: Tee to green, 20th driving accuracy and 29th for GIR.
Paul Casey: 12/1
Followed up his T3 at the Tour Championship with his 14th European Tour victory at the Porsche European Open. T20 here last year in his first start since 2013. Ranks inside the top 10 on the PGA Tour for GIR, scoring average, SG: Off the tee, SG: Tee to green and SG: Approach
Tommy Fleetwood: 18/1
T8 at the Omega European Masters, which was his third top 10 in his last six starts – and followed a T11 at the BMW Championship and T13 at East Lake. Fleetwood was T20 last year, with a best finish of T6 in 2015. Ranks 8th for scoring average, 12th SG: Off the tee, 13th SG: Tee to green and 15th SG: Around the green.
Henrik Stenson: 22/1
Comes to Wentworth after a T3 at the Scandinavian Invitation, and finished T4 in his last European Tour start at the Scottish Open. T3 the last time he played here in 2017. Ranks 1st SG: Approach, 5th driving accuracy, 18th scoring average and 22nd SG: Tee to green on the PGA Tour.
Tony Finau: 22/1
Back to back top 10s at the BMW Championship and Tour Championship before coming to play in his first BMW PGA Championship. He’s had five runner-up finishes in the past year, but hasn’t had a win since the PGA Tour’s Puerto Rico Open in 2016. Ranks 15th scoring average, 21st SG: Tee to green and 23rd for SG: Off the tee on the PGA Tour.
Francesco Molinari: 25/1
If you’re wanting a horse for the course, Molinari is your man. The defending champion defeated Rory McIlroy by two strokes last year, and was runner-up to Alex Noren in 2018 – proving he’s a big fan of the Wentworth redesign. Struggled in his final two events of the season on the PGA Tour after a T11 at The Open, and returns after taking a month off.
Matthew Fitzpatrick: 25/1
Fitzpatrick has played just twice since a T4 at the WGC Fed St Jude Invitational, finishing second at the Scandinavian Invitation before a T69 at the Omega European Masters. Has played well here over the past two years, finishing T8 here last year and T12 in 2017. Ranks 2nd scoring average, 11th driving accuracy and 19th for both SG: Tee to green and SG: Putting on the European Tour.
Patrick Reed: 30/1
Reed has had an incredibly consistent year, and hasn’t finished outside the top 36 in his last 12 starts, which includes a victory at The Northern Trust and two other top 10s. Finished T15 at the KLM Open last week. Ranks 14th SG: Around the green and 21st for scoring average on the PGA tour
Shane Lowry: 30/1
The Open Champion didn’t perform brilliantly at either the Northern Trust or BMW Championship but he does have a great record at Wentworth, finishing T15 last year and recording four top 10s. Ranks 3rd scoring average.
Viktor Hovland: 30/1
Hovland might be playing in this event for the first time, but he just tied the PGA Tour record of consecutive rounds in the 60s, recording his 17th with a final round 64 at The Greenbrier. The young star hasn’t finished worse than T16 in his last six starts, which includes a runner-up finish at the Korn Ferry Tour’s Albertsons Boise Open and T10 at the first event of the PGA Tour season. Ranks 10th Scoring average, 16th GIR, 17th SG: Approach, 21st birdies, 23rd SG: Putting, 25th SG: Tee to green on the PGA Tour.
Matthias Schwab: 50/1
In brilliant form heading in to this event after a T2 at the Porsche Europen Open, which was his third top 10 in a row on the European Tour. Making his Wentworth debut this week. Ranks 11th SG: Around the green, 19th GIR, 21st SG: Tee to green and 23rd scoring average on the European Tour.
Alexander Bjork: 80/1
Bjork heads to Wentworth following four top 30s in a row, his best being a T20 at the Scandinavian Invitation. Was T27 here last year and before that T14 on his debut in 2017. Ranks inside the top 30 on the PGA Tour for SG: Approach the green, Scrambling and SG: Around the green, as well as 37th for scoring average.