While most of the focus is on the sport’s superstars in all major tournaments, there is a new generation of players climbing the golf ladder. These budding golfers appear to be on their way to becoming stars in their own right. Golf’s popularity as a sport is also on the rise, increasing the interest in current and upcoming stars. Moreover, the popularity has seen the game featured as a theme in online casino games like video slots. So, who are the rising star golfers to keep an eye on?
Matteo Manassero possesses all the tools necessary to become a star on both sides of the Atlantic. Manassero earned his first championship at 17 when he won the Castellon Masters in Spain in 2010. Even though they are not considered favorites for the main events, these athletes must be recognized.
He also won the BMW PGA Championship in England, becoming the event’s youngest champion at age 20. Manassero’s goals extend beyond winning individual competitions.
Russell Henley comes into the 2013 PGA Tour season ready to make a name for himself. He won the Sony Open in January with an impressive 24-under par 256, earning him $1,008,000. Henley has three other top-10 performances, as well as five top-25 finishes. This season, Henley has earned more than $1.9 million.
The South African native made his presence known at the Masters, shooting an even-par 288 to tie for 18th in the year’s first major title. He also received $116,000. Grace has to improve his tee-to-ball precision. If Branden can develop in that area, he has the potential to compete on the PGA Tour and in Europe regularly.
Luke Guthrie set the tone for the Web.com Tour when he finished in the Top 10 in four of the ten events he entered in 2012. Guthrie made his PGA Tour debut this year and has won more than $973,000. His highest finish was third in the Honda Classic, which won him $408,000.
While Guthrie isn’t a strong hitter, he has a great short game. Guthrie ranks 15th on tour, hitting the green on 93.39 percent of his wedge shots from 75 yards or less. Guthrie also has the circuit’s 15th most birdies.
Guan Tianlang made a big impression in April when he not only qualified for the master’s but also made the cut and finished in 58th place with a 12-over-par total of 300. Guan is still learning the game, but he is terrific. He should be able to add distance to his repertoire as he becomes older and stronger.
Danny Lee, 23, is learning and has demonstrated genuine promise. He placed second in the Rex Hospital Open and finished in the top ten in two more events. The South Korean native relocated to Australia when he was eight years old, and he described his biggest delight as winning the Johnnie Walker Classic in Perth, Australia.
Lee is a powerful hitter who is also quite accurate. He can develop into a competent and consistent challenger as soon as he achieves some consistency.