I don’t want to say I told you so, but I told you so. After watching the Open Championship, I made a mental note to keep my eyes on Thomas Pieters. While he received headlines for his club throw and blow up hole, I observed that he played great golf, and could have been in the top 5 if it was not for that one crooked number. I am not a huge watcher of the European Tour, but I view it when I can, and started to see Pieters’s name start to pop up on lots of leaderboards. After the PGA Championship, I thought he was due for a real break out. I specifically said to watch out for Pieters at the Olympics, and formally predicted him to finish 4th. Sure enough that is where he placed, and could have contended for the Gold, if not for a disastrous Saturday. My eyes were still peeled to him as he placed 2nd in the Czech Masters, the week after he was in Rio. One week later, Pieters won the Made In Denmark tournament. At the time of my initial prediction for a break out, I was not too knowledgeable about Pieters’s game, but all I knew was that I kept on seeing his name on the leaderboard (2nd page mostly), and he seemed ready to explode. I have later found out that the 24 year old Belgian is a huge hitter that spent his college years at Illinois. Pieters is still very young (only 1 year older than Jordan Spieth!), mega talented and on fire (4th,2nd,1st in last 3 events). For a while, I have been pounding the table for Pieters to get a look for the European Ryder Cup Team. I think his game suits Hazeltine perfectly (long hitter) and appears to be an absolute baller. Very recently, people have started to join my bandwagon, and it was reported tonight that he indeed was one of the picks. That can not be taken as a guarantee, especially since Luke Donald was reported as a pick, earlier this morning. Regardless, it is time for America to recognize Thomas Pieters. He is an absolute stud that should be a consistent contender in majors, for many years to come.
PS: He is worth a follow on Twitter, seems like a good guy.