Memorial Tournament 2013: Players Who Need Strong Weekend to Build Confidence

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIJune 1, 2013

DUBLIN, OH - MAY 30:  Rickie Fowler hits his second shot on the par 5 15th hole during the first round of the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance at Muirfield Village Golf Club on May 30, 2013 in Dublin, Ohio.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Two days of play at the 2013 Memorial Tournament have been completed and contenders for the weekend have fallen into place.

While those players will be gunning for the $1,116,000 prize and the 500 FedEx Cup points awarded to the winner, they and other players will be looking to at least finish strong heading into June.

With the U.S Open quickly approaching, players would prefer to be playing their best leading up to the year's second major. Some players need a strong finish more than others.

Every player on the PGA Tour is physically talented, but their confidence levels can fluctuate from time to time. The following players need to have a strong weekend to feel better about their play as summer kicks into high gear. 


Rickie Fowler

Through the first two rounds at Muirfield Village GC in Dublin, Oh., Fowler has been ordinary. He bogeyed five holes on Thursday, but he did play better on Friday to somewhat offset his opening-round 72.

Fowler shot a one-under 71 to make it to Saturday at one under for the tournament.

Ever since he finished tied for third at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in late March, Fowler hasn't finished better than 32nd place in a tournament.

Even if Fowler can't get back into serious contention at the Memorial, he'd at least like to build some momentum heading into the FedEx St. Jude Classic and then the U.S Open.


Keegan Bradley

Picking up where he left off in the fourth round of the HP Byron Nelson Championship, Bradley was erratic on Day 1 of the Memorial with an even-par 72.

Friday's play was a bit worse for the soon to be 27-year-old. He finished second-round play with a two-over 72 to narrowly make the cut. Bradley's talent has never been questioned, but his inconsistency and ability to close are still concerns.

The inexplicable two-over 72 he produced on the final day at Lord Byron's tournament cost him the championship after he shot a 10-under 60 in the opening round. 

Bradley needs a good showing this weekend to prove to himself he can still play well on the final two days.


Matt Kuchar

Kuchar has had more recent success than any other player in this piece. He was four under par on Thursday and remained steady on Friday. When he finished play, he was trailing leader Bill Haas by three strokes at six under par.

He should remain in the hunt this weekend.

At 34 years old, Kuchar has a scale that is a little different than Bradley and Fowler's. He's headed for the stage of his career where contending less often is expected.

He has two top-five finishes this season, including a second-place finish at the Crowne Plaza Invitational on May 26. It's time for Kuchar to maximize every opportunity to win.

Winning at the Memorial would be huge.


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