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Paul Casey Top Dog After 1st Round of Match Play

Paul Casey Top Dog After 1st Round of Match Play


Paul Casey went to overtime defeating Richard Green on the 19th hole to win his opening round match at the Accenture Match Play Championship and yet is still the betting favourite after Tiger Woods tumbled out of the tournament losing on the 19th to Thomas Bjorn.

Casey now goes out at (9-1) ahead of Rory Mcilroy and Martin Kaymer and he’ll take on Australian Jason Day in the second round.

Casey was solid enough on Wednesday, but it seems a bit mystifying that he’s now the favourite as he managed only a single birdie in his first round match.  Furthermore, he now takes on Day who had four birdies and two eagles in a dominating 3 and 2 win over Kyung-Tae Kim.

McIlroy, who will carry (11-1) into his second round match, easily closed out a temperamental Jonathan Byrd 4 and 2 in a round that was punctuated with an eagle two on the par-4 4th hole.

He has no easy assignment in round two as he now faces Ben Crane who looked very good in his win over Adam Scott.  Crane isn’t a top player, but he only let the world class Scott win a single on Wednesday.

Crane has every chance to take down McIlroy, especially after his great opening match, and as usual match play goes to the hottest player on a given day.  McIlroy should avoid giving the American too many openings or he could be in trouble.

Also at (11-1) is world number two Martin Kaymer.  If anyone looks like a real favourite after the opening round matches, it’s Kaymer who flat out dominated Seung-Yul Noh to send home the young Korean after just 12 holes winning 7 and 6.

It’s a win that should send notice the rest of the field that Kaymer is out for blood and will punish his opponents for any untimely mistakes, as he did to Noh time after time on Wednesday.

He’ll now face a stiffer test in Englishman Justin Rose in round two.  Rose could provide some resistance after a solid opening win over Zach Johnson, but he shouldn’t derail the German if he continues to throw away holes as he did on Wednesday.

From the land of long odds.  YE Yang, the 2009 PGA Champion, is at (66-1) and now has a second round date with another major champion, Stewart Cink.  Yang showed tremendous fortitude against Alvaro Quiros in a comeback win that was capped with a birdie on the 20th hole.


Stroke play is a better test of golf, but match play is a better test of character   - Billy Casper 

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