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PGA Tour: Five rookies to look out for

Original article published 31 August 2022

The PGA Tour season ended last Sunday, with Rory McIlroy's thrilling FedEx Cup success, and the new one starts on 15th September.

We pinpoint five rookies who may make an impact in the forthcoming campaign.

Taylor Montgomery

A powerhouse born and based in Las Vegas could be worth rolling the dice with when the PGA Tour season gets underway.

Taylor Montgomery has come agonisingly close to promotion to the PGA Tour in the past, narrowly failing to leave the Korn Ferry Tour behind, but the 27-year-old has finally got the gig.

Montgomery finished 26th in the Korn Ferry Tour standings at the end of 2021 - with the top 25 getting PGA Tour cards - so he showed great fortitude to knuckle down in the early months of this year and quickly gain redemption.

Montgomery has posted nine top-10 finishes on the Korn Ferry Tour this year, going into this week's Korn Ferry Tour Championship as one of the stars of the season. He was 11th in the Farmers Insurance Open in January on a rare PGA Tour start, proving he can mix it with the big boys.

Brandon Matthews

Cameron Champ made headlines when he arrived on the PGA Tour producing enormous drives of a distance not previously seen - and another power-packed American should be getting plenty of attention in the season to come.

Brandon Matthews, like Montgomery, wrapped up his PGA Tour card early this year with a burst of brilliance on the Korn Ferry Tour. Second place in the Panama Championship was followed by victory in the Astara Championship the following week.

Matthews is a giant blessed with immense natural power. Montgomery is relentlessly consistent, whereas Matthews can go from the sublime to the ridiculous.

When this attacking 28-year-old from Pennsylvania finds a groove, trophies are on his compass. The six-foot four-inch slugger was a prolific champion on the Latinoamerica circuit and could be about the showcase his talent on the main circuit.

Justin Suh

When Collin Morikawa, Viktor Hovland and Matthew Wolff burst on to the PGA Tour straight from their college days in 2019, there was another of their peers who was expected to make the same impact. Justin Suh.

For many reasons, including a niggling wrist injury which came at a terrible time for him, Suh failed on his opening forays on the PGA Tour. It must have been hellish for this great talent to see Morikawa, Hovland and Wolff enjoy immediate success on the world's elite circuit, while he struggled for pay cheques on lesser tours.

After a stumbling start, then, Suh seems ready to take his career to a new level at the age of 25. The Californian has posted 15 top-20s in his last 19 tournaments. He belongs on the PGA Tour and could make waves on the West Coast Swing early in the season.

Vincent Norrman

The name of Vincent Norrman will be familiar to DP World Tour fans. The musclebound Swede made an instant impact when he was given some opportunities on that circuit last year, finishing 12th in the Scandinavian Mixed, fifth in the BMW International, tenth in the Cazoo Open and 11th in the ISPS Handa World Invitational.

Norrman turned his attention Stateside and he has slowly but surely become a force to be reckoned with on the Korn Ferry Tour. A share of 12th place in The Bahamas in January settled him down nicely - the first of 11 top-30 finishes which have kickstarted his career.

Third place in the Simmons Bank Open and second in the Rex Hospital Open mean Norrman is heading for the big time. And he appears to have all the tools for success at the highest level.

Carl Yuan

Golf has never been a more global game, underlined by the fact a Chinese youngster has been the most dominant force on the Korn Ferry Tour this season. Yechun Yuan - or Carl Yuan as he prefers to be called - is on the brink of a place in the top 100 of the world rankings thanks to his Korn Ferry heroics.

One victory, three second places, one third and one fifth means Yuan has propelled himself on to the PGA Tour. The 25-year-old played college golf in Washington and bases himself in Florida, turning professional in 2018.

Yuan beat the much more experienced Peter Uihlein in a playoff for the Louisiana Open in March, bravely making a birdie at the first extra hole, and he appears to have star quality.

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