Power Rankings: World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba

Brooks Koepka Justin ThomasPower Rankings Mayakoba
Brooks Koepka reacts to his shot from the 11th tee as Justin Thomas looks on during the first round of THE CJ CUP at Shadow Creek GC on Oct 15, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Keyur Khamar / PGA TOUR via Getty Images)

For the third consecutive week, the PGA Tour will be teeing it up outside the U.S., going from Japan to Bermuda, and now to Playa del Carmen in Southern Mexico for the World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba.

The field is demonstrably more stout than it was in the previous two international outings, with seven players ranked higher in the OWGR than No. 22 Patrick Reed, who was the highest ranked player at last week’s Bermuda Championship.

The Mayakoba has been consistently thrilling since graduating as an opposite-field event in 2013 with six of the last seven editions finishing with either a playoff or a one-stroke victory.

Defending champion Viktor Hovland returns to the site of his second career PGA Tour win. Where does he stack up with this year’s field?

Here are the top 19 players (and Hovland) that we see making his back-to-back quest most difficult:

15. Keith Mitchell

Keith Mitchell CJ Cup
Keith Mitchell on from the 13th green during the second round of THE CJ CUP at The Summit Club on Oct 15, 2021 in Las Vegas, NV. (Photo by Alex Goodlett via Getty Images for CJ Cup @ Summit)

70th, CUT, 65th, 68th: those are Mitchell’s results at El Camaleon in four attempts, occurring in each of the past four seasons.

So, why the vote of confidence? The 29-year-old University of Georgia product has three top 10s in his last seven starts, and we were encouraged by what he did in his last start, bouncing back from blowing a five-stroke Saturday lead to finish T3 at last month’s The CJ CUP @ Sherwood.

Despite the poor finishes at the Mayakoba, he has shot three rounds of 66 or better. If he can avoid that one really bad round, there is no reason he cannot get himself into the mix here.

World Rank: 96th
Odds To Win: 100-1
Odds/Field Rank: T43

14. Rory Sabbatini

Rory Sabbatini
Rory Sabbatini talks with his caddie on the 16th green during the final round of the BMW Championship at Medinah CC No. 3 on Aug 18, 2019 in Medinah, IL. Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images

The 45-year-old with dual citizenship in South Africa and Slovakia has been shockingly relevant in recent months. An absurd Sunday 61 won him the silver medal at The Olympic Games in August, and among his six starts worldwide since is a T10 at the Wyndham Championship and a T3 in his most recent start at the Shriners Children’s Open.

Sabbatini has not been spectacular in recent years at El Cameleon, but with 10 career starts, he knows the course well, and did post a T3 at this event in 2014.

World Rank: 98th
Odds To Win: 125-1
Odds/Field Rank: T65

13. Cameron Tringale

Cameron Tringale Leads 3M Open
Cameron Tringale watched his shot from the 18th tee during the Third Round of the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities on July 24, 2021 in Blaine, Minn. (Photo by David Berding via Getty Images)

With more than 300 starts under his belt, Tringale’s first PGA Tour win is so close he can taste it. In his most recent start, he finished T2 at the ZOZO Championship in Japan to Japan’s native son Hideki Matsuyama.

It was the seventh time in his last ten starts that he has finished T26 or better. One word of caution, though: this has not been his event. After missing the cut in his first three attempts, he has posted finishes of T46, T25, T66 in his last three attempts.

Tringale is currently eighth in the FedExCup standings.

World Rank: 53rd
Odds To Win: 33-1
Odds/Field Rank: T9

12. Emiliano Grillo

Emiliano Grillo 149th Open Championship Royal St Georges
Emiliano Grillo plays his shot from the 3rd tee with his caddie during the third round of The 149th British Open Golf Championship at Royal St George’s in Sandwich, England on July 17, 2021. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS for AFP via Getty Images)

The Argentinian had a difficult Sunday a year ago, as he failed to protect his 54-hole lead, but the T8 was still his fourth finish of T15 or better in just five El Camaleon starts, including three top-10s.

The highlight of Grillo’s current season was a closing 11-under 61 three weeks ago at The CJ CUP @ Sherwood. That T18 is his only 2021-22 season finish of better than T39 in five starts however.

He finished last season ranked third on Tour in greens in regulation.

World Rank: 77th
Odds To Win: 80-1
Odds/Field Rank: T37

11. Brooks Koepka

Brooks Koepka 149th Open Championship Royal St Georges
Brooks Koepka putts on the 11th green as caddie Ricky Elliott looks on during Day Three of The 149th Open at Royal St George’s Golf Club on July 17, 2021 in Sandwich, England. (Photo by Warren Little for R&A via Getty Images)

The four-time major champion finds himself in a recent drought, with nothing better than a T22 in five starts since he finished T6 at The Open Championship. That funk also coincides with a poor history at the Mayakoba, where he has missed the cut in both of his starts and has yet to shoot a round under par.

Still, Koepka can never be counted out, and taking the past three weeks off could be what he needed. He is a player who seems to perform better coming off of rest.

World Rank: 13th
Odds To Win: 28-1
Odds/Field Rank: T5

10. Carlos Ortiz

Carlos Ortiz Wins Houston Open
Carlos Ortiz of Mexico celebrates after winning the Houston Open at Memorial Park Golf Course on November 08, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

The Mexico native nearly became the most popular winner in the Mayakoba’s 13-year history when he finished T2 at the 2019 edition, just one stroke behind winner Brendon Todd.

The 30-year-old followed up that remarkable effort with a T8 in this event a year ago, the week after notching his first career victory at the Vivant Houston Open.

The world No. 78 has failed to record a top 10 since, but is too strong at this course and will have too much crowd support to ignore. His short game will need to be MUCH better than it has in four starts in the new season though; he ranks 193rd in stroke gained: around-the-green and 180th in strokes gained: putting.

World Rank: 78th
Odds To Win: 66-1
Odds/Field Rank: T29

9. Matthew Wolff

Matthew Wolff
Matthew Wolff reacts as he walks up the 15th fairway during the second round of the 2021 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines GC (South) on June 18, 2021 in San Diego, CA. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey via Getty Images)

One of the most difficult players on Tour to predict, the 22-year-old is a gambler’s nightmare. Sometimes he appears on the cusp of superstardom, while other times, his game is a complete mess and he looks like he needs a sabbatical.

After two early runner-ups last season, with one of those being at the U.S. Open, Wolff went just one day short of a full calendar year without a top-10 before finishing as the solo runner-up at last month’s Shriners Children’s Open, his most recent start.

Making his Mayakoba debut, Wolff is a disaster off the tees, but does everything else at a plus level. We would not be surprised by anything with him this week.

World Rank: 31st
Odds To Win: 40-1
Odds/Field Rank: T13

8. Scottie Scheffler

Team USA's Scottie Scheffler 2021 Ryder Cup
Team USA’s Scottie Scheffler plays his shot from the 12th tee as Europe’s Jon Rahm looks on during Sunday Singles Matches of the 43rd Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits on Sept 26, 2021 in Kohler, WI. (Photo by Patrick Smith via Getty Images)

There is nobody in the golf world more due for their first PGA Tour win than Scheffler, a 25-year-old who has accumulated 15 top-10s over the past two seasons, and has consistently shown well in bigger events.

The Texan has not been quite as immaculate as usual since a T8 at The Open Championship in July, but his highlight in the months since was a whopper: he took down the seemingly unbeatable world No. 1 Jon Rahm in Sunday Singles at the Ryder Cup, providing an expected final day point for the winning American side.

Scheffler finished T18 two years ago in his sole attempt at El Camaleon.

World Rank: 24th
Odds To Win: 28-1
Odds/Field Rank: T5

7. Tyrrell Hatton

Tyrrell Hatton
Tyrrell Hatton plays a shot from a bunker on the 16th hole during the second round of the 2021 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines South Course on June 18, 2021 in San Diego, CA. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey via Getty Images)

The man who turned 30 in round 1 of his last start has been the epitome of boom-or-bust as of late. In his last nine starts worldwide, he has five finishes of T18 or better, including two runner-ups, but missed the cut in each of those other four starts.

Now an underwhelming 18th in the OWGR, the former top 10 mainstay will be looking to rebound from a PGA Tour season where he managed just four top 10s in 19 starts.

Hatton needs to play much better on Sunday, if he makes the cut in his Mayakoba debut; in his last three Tour starts, he has contended through three rounds just to falter in round 4.

World Rank: 18th
Odds To Win: 28-1
Odds/Field Rank: T5

6. Billy Horschel

Billy Horschel
Billy Horschel during day one of the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth Golf Club, Surrey. (Photo by Tess Derry/PA Images via Getty Images)

The world No. 20 is choosing the Mayakoba for his 2021-22 season debut. The winner of March’s WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play has rested for a month after a sizzling end to his last season, following a top 10 at the Tour Championship with a victory at the BMW PGA Championship, the European Tour’s flagship event.

Horschel has been a horse for the course at El Camaleon with three consecutive finishes of T21 or better, including a T8 in 2019 and a T5 a year ago.

World Rank: 20th
Odds To Win: 28-1
Odds/Field Rank: T5

5. Justin Thomas

Team USA's Justin Thomas 43rd Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits
Team USA’s Justin Thomas raises his arms and putter as he celebrates making an eagle putt on the 16th hole green during Friday Afternoon Four-ball Matches of the 43rd Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits on Sept 24, 2021 in Sheboygan, WI. (Photo by Keyur Khamar / PGA TOUR via Getty Images)

The lone member of the OWGR’s top 10 to make the trek to Playa del Carmen is the 14-time Tour winner Thomas, who currently sits at No. 7.

JT got off to a rough start at last year’s event, but rebounded with a third-round 62 that allowed him to finish T12. He still has not fully emerged from the uncharacteristic funk he has been in since winning THE PLAYERS last March, but his results have been improving, with two T4s in his last four starts.

Even with the lack of high-end finishes in the 2021 season, he still ranked third in strokes gained: tee-to-green and had the Tour’s sixth best scoring average.

A relatively weak strength of field provides him an excellent opportunity to contend, something that has not been happening at the frequency he is used to.

World Rank: 7th
Odds To Win: 12-1
Odds/Field Rank: 1st

4. Aaron Wise

Aaron Wise Leads Honda Classic
Aaron Wise reacts to his birdie on the 9th green during the second round of The Honda Classic at PGA National Champion course on Mar 19, 2021 in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

The 25-year-old nearly netted his second career Tour victory at this event a year ago, rallying from a five-stroke 54-hole deficit with a bogey-free 8-under 63 to finish solo-second, just one stroke back of Hovland. He also shot a 63 in the third round of the 2019 edition, where he finished T10.

In addition to great recent course history, Wise has quietly been one of the best players in the world, with five straight finishes of T26 or better, including top 10s in his last two starts.

In three starts of the new season, he ranks 12th or better in three of the six strokes gained categories. This has the feeling of a true breakout year for him, and we expect him to greatly eclipse his previous high of four top-10s in a season.

World Rank: 68th
Odds To Win: 33-1
Odds/Field Rank: T9

3. Viktor Hovland

Viktor Hovland
Viktor Hovland watches his drive on the 12th tee box during the second round of the WGC-Workday Championship at The Concession on Feb 26, 2021 in Bradenton, FL. (Photo by Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images)

The defending champion took this event a year ago with an incredible 63-65 weekend to overtake 54-hole leader Emiliano Grillo and finish one stroke clear of a charging Aaron Wise.

Back-to-back winners have been rare in the PGA Tour’s recent history, but we like the 24-year-old to at least make things interesting, coming off a season where he had five finishes inside the top 3.

Hovland finished the 2021 season ranked 15th or better in four of the six strokes gained: categories and sported the Tour’s ninth best scoring average.

His future looks among the brightest of any player in golf.

World Rank: 17th
Odds To Win: 18-1
Odds/Field Rank: 2nd

2. Tony Finau

Tony Finau Wins The 2021 Northern Trust
Tony Finau reacts after making a putt on the 18th green during the final round of THE NORTHERN TRUST at Liberty National Golf Club on Aug 23, 2021 in Jersey City, NJ. (Photo by Sarah Stier via Getty Images)

In his last 11 starts Finau has just a single top-10, which is unlike him, although that top 10 was a breakthrough victory at THE NORTHERN TRUST in August.

A T45 last month at The CJ CUP @ Summit was not the start to the 2021-22 season that he envisioned, but a final-round 65 might at least give him some momentum heading into his second season start.

A year ago, he birdied five of his first eight holes on Sunday to get into the mix before fizzling out on the back nine and settling for a still-strong T8.

Finau dropped out of the top 10 of the OWGR last week despite not playing, with the player who passed him (Jordan Spieth) not playing either. We expect his absence to be short-lived.

World Rank: 11th
Odds To Win: 25-1
Odds/Field Rank: 4th

1. Abraham Ancer

Abraham Ancer Albatross Double Eagle CJ Cup
Abraham Ancer celebrates with his caddie Benji Thompson after holing out from the 14th fairway for a double eagle (albatross) during the second round of THE CJ CUP at The Summit Club on Oct 15, 2021 in Las Vegas, NV. (Photo by Christian Petersen via Getty Images)

The world’s best player from Mexico returns to El Camaleon for the first time as a Tour winner, having taken the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational three months ago.

Six of Ancer’s last nine Tour starts have resulted in a finish inside the top 15, and he has finished 21st or better four consecutive years in this event, including two top 10s.

A year ago, he finished T12 off the strength of a 65-66 weekend. He will undoubtedly be the most popular player to the fans on site this week; can he ride those good vibes to win No. 2, becoming the first Mexico citizen to take this Mexico event?

His precision puts him squarely among the favorites. We think it happens.
World Rank: 14th
Odds To Win: 20-1
Odds/Field Rank: 3rd

Next Five: Lucas Herbert, Shane Lowry, Brendon Todd, Patrick Reed, Mito Pereira


Please enter your name here