Mythical Match Play championship: Round of 16, Quarterfinal results; Semifinals set
March 28, 2020
By Staff, PGATOUR.COM
- March 28, 2020
Top-10 shots from Austin Country Club at WGC – Dell Match Play
Voting has now been completed for the Round of 16 and quarterfinals of our Mythical Match Play Championship. That means we’re down to the final four players from the original field of 64, leaving us with these two semifinal matches:
• Rory McIlroy vs. Xander Schauffele
• Jon Rahm vs. Sungjae Im
Our fans helped to break three ties in the Round of 16 matches. With our 10 expert voters deadlocked at 5-5 for matches involving Schauffele vs. Hideki Matsuyama, Im vs. Collin Morikawa and Rahm vs. Marc Leishman, we enlisted the help of fans via the Twitter account of the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play. Schauffele, Im and Rahm earned the nods, and now they’ve each won another match to joine the world’s No. 1 player as the four survivors after clear-cut voting from the experts in the quarterfinals.
Our Mythical event is the just-for-fun exercise we’re conducting this week in lieu of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, which was among the canceled events by the PGA TOUR in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The TOUR conducted a draw to produce a bracket, and now our 10 experts are voting for the winner of each match. We released the Round 1 results on Wednesday (click here), the Round 2 results on Thursday (click here) and the Round 3 results on Friday (click here) that determined the 16 survivors advancing to the single-elimination phase. We’ll crown the Mythical Match Play champion on Sunday.
What would have this year's bracket looked like, you ask?— WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play (@DellMatchPlay) March 23, 2020
Here you go. pic.twitter.com/kJHmlUxJUZ
The voting rules are simple: Each expert was asked to pick a match winner, and the golfer with the majority of votes is the match winner. Our 10 expert voters include: GolfBet’s Jason Sobel from The Action Network; GolfTV’s Jamie Kennedy; Tom Alter and Jim McCabe from PGA TOUR Communications; Fantasy Insider Rob Bolton; PGATOUR.COM writers Ben Everill, Sean Martin, Mike McAllister and Cameron Morfit; and a combined vote from the TOUR’s ShotLink team.
The results of all quarterfinals and Round of 16 matches are below (player seeds in parentheses).
Rory McIlroy (1) vs. Webb Simpson (9): 7 votes for McIlroy, 3 votes for Simpson. McILROY wins.
Why I picked McIlroy: "I was surprised to see the injured Oosthuizen advance -- I had him going 0-3-0 in his pool -- so not only is McIlroy in better form than everyone else, he's also more rested to face anyone later in the same day, much less Simpson, who grinded past Patrick Cantlay in the Round of 16." - Rob Bolton
Justin Thomas (4) vs. Xander Schauffele (12): 6 votes for Schauffele, 4 votes for Thomas. SCHAUFFELE wins.
Why I picked Schauffele: “Statistically, these two are so close. In five of the six Strokes Gained categories, they are within 6 ranking positions of each other. Ultimately, I based my decision on Sunday Singles at the Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne. Schauffele knocked off the biggest homegrown star in Adam Scott, while JT lost to young Aussie Cameron Smith.” – Mike McAllister
Jon Rahm (2) vs. Patrick Reed (7): 6 votes for Rahm, 4 votes for Reed. RAHM wins.
Why I picked Rahm: “While Reed is incredibly tough in match play, so, too, is this Spanish star who has previously been threatening to win it all at Austin CC. A 30-foot birdie on 18 seals a 1-up win.” – Ben Everill
Adam Scott (6) vs. Sungjae Im (23): 6 votes for Im, 4 votes for Scott. IM wins.
Why I picked Im: “I’ll take golfing machine Im over Scott, whose putting admittedly deserts him at times.” – Cameron Morfit
Matches in World Golf Championships - Dell Technologies Match Play
ROUND OF 16 RESULTS
Rory McIlroy (1) vs. Louis Oosthuizen (19): 9 votes for McIlroy, 1 vote for Oosthuizen. MCILROY wins.
Why I picked McIlroy: “Oosthuizen is terrific at match play, but he can’t match the No. 1 player in the world. Rory rolls into the quarterfinals.” – Tom Alter
Patrick Cantlay (8) vs. Webb Simpson (9): 7 votes for Simpson, 3 votes for Cantlay. SIMPSON wins.
Why I picked Simpson: “Simpson simply looks like he knows every putt is going in.” – Jim McCabe
Justin Thomas (4) vs. Ian Poulter (58): 8 votes for Thomas, 2 votes for Poulter. THOMAS wins.
Why I picked Thomas: “Even though Poulter is the guy with the long-term reputation for stepping it up in match play events, Thomas is a sneaky 10-3-2 over the last three years of Ryder/Presidents Cup competitions, proving his skills translate well to this format.” – Jason Sobel
Xander Schauffele (12) vs. Hideki Matsuyama (22): 5 votes for Schauffele, 5 votes for Matsuyama. Fan voting: 61% for Schauffele, 39% for Matsuyama. SCHAUFFELE wins.
Why I picked Schauffele: “Xander is a pit-bull who waits for the slightest scrap and attacks. The first missed putt from Hideki would provide Schauffele a lead he would never relinquish.” – Ben Everill
Jon Rahm (2) vs. Marc Leishman (15): 5 votes for Rahm, 5 votes for Leishman. Fan voting: 75% for Rahm, 25% for Leishman. RAHM wins.
Why I picked Rahm: “Leishman is a tough match play guy with two trips to the round of 16 in the last three years, but 2017 runner-up Rahm is so comfy in Austin, he looks destined to win this tournament someday.” – Cameron Morfit
Patrick Reed (7) vs. Tommy Fleetwood (10): 6 votes for Reed, 4 votes for Fleetwood. REED wins.
Why we picked Reed: “Both players are really similar in Strokes Gained: Approach-the-Green ranking T-38 (Reed) and 34th (Fleetwood). However, Reed has a huge edge on and around the greens, ranking 38th in SG: Around-the-Green & third in SG: Putting to Fleetwood’s 176th SG: Around-the-Green & 96th in SG: Putting. Reed has Fleetwood by over a stroke on and around the greens per round this season on TOUR.” – ShotLink team
Sungjae Im (23) vs. Collin Morikawa (44): 5 votes for Im, 5 votes for Morikawa. Fan voting: 56% for Im, 44% for Morikawa. IM wins.
Why I picked Im: “Quite the battle among two of the PGA TOUR’s biggest and brightest young stars. This one comes down to putting – Im ranks 36th in Strokes Gained: Putting this season while Morikawa ranks 174th.” – Mike McAllister
Adam Scott (6) vs. Tiger Woods (11): 9 votes for Scott, 1 vote for Woods. SCOTT wins.
Why I picked Scott: “Having not played a lot in recent weeks, a fourth straight match for Tiger could catch up with him. Scott's putting has improved drastically in the last 18 months and that helps him knock off the Masters champ.” – Jamie Kennedy