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Rory McIlroy is the favourite to win at Brookline this week after successfully defending his Canadian Open title at St. George’s last Sunday, but another European star looks the best bet to claim the third major championship of the season.
Rahm is the defending champion after he finished a shot clear of Louis Oosthuizen at Torrey Pines last year to win his first major, and the Spaniard can emulate former US Open champions Curtis Strange (1988, ‘89) and Brooks Koepka (2017, ‘18) by defending his title at the first attempt.
Despite a disappointing T48 at last month’s PGA Championship, Rahm has finished inside the top 10 in five of his last seven major starts, including top-five finishes at both the Masters and The Open in 2021.
The 27-year-old is coming off a T10 finish at the Memorial Tournament and is only two starts removed from a win at the Mexico Open at the start of May.
Currently ranked sixth in total shots gained, first off the tee and fourth tee-to-green on the PGA Tour this season, Rahm has been in formidable form and will be tough to beat at Brookline this week.
With two wins and three other finishes of eighth or better from his last nine major starts, Morikawa has proven himself as a consistent, steely contender in the biggest events, and he looks to have a big chance Brookline this week.
The American posted a career best T4 finish at last year’s US Open, battling back from an opening round of 75 to finish four shots behind winner Jon Rahm.
Morikawa has struggled for form of late, finishing outside of the top 20 in his last five starts, but he did finish fifth at the Masters in April and his record in the majors means he’s well worth a bet at this price.
Hitting the fairways is hugely important at Brookline, so the 25-year-old should be nicely suited to this track as he ranks 21st in driving accuracy on the PGA Tour this season.
Morikawa, Bryson DeChambeau, Hideki Matsuyama, Jon Rahm and Scottie Scheffler have all become first-time major winners in the past two years, and Homa could be the next player to make the breakthrough.
The 31-year-old is on a strong run of form, with five straight finishes of 23rd or better, including a win at the Wells Fargo Championship in May and a career-best major finish of T13 at the PGA Championship.
Homa is yet to make the cut in three US Open appearances, but he’s a two-time winner this season and has previously picked up victories at quality courses in Quail Hollow and Riviera.
Better results in the big events look imminent, and a T5 at the Memorial Tournament last time out suggests his form’s good enough to see a huge leap forward here.
Henley opened with a 67 at last year’s US Open at Torrey Pines and held a share of the lead for each of the first three rounds, but shot 76 on Sunday to slump to T13.
The American is poised for another fast start this year, having consistently performed on the first day throughout this PGA Tour season.
Henley ranks second in round one scoring average on the PGA Tour this season, having averaged under 68 on Thursdays. He also ranks inside the top 25 in driving accuracy, which suggests this course will suit him nicely, and second in approach to the green.
His best opening round to date this season was a 62 at the Sony Open back in January which left him T2 after Thursday’s play, and he looks well-equipped to go one better this week.