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Young Players Under 25 Contending at WGC-Accenture Match Play

Fred AltvaterContributor IISeptember 15, 2016

Young Players Under 25 Contending at WGC-Accenture Match Play

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    Jordan Spieth made it to the Final 16 at the WGC-Accenture Match Play
    Jordan Spieth made it to the Final 16 at the WGC-Accenture Match PlayLenny Ignelzi/Associated Press

    Ernie Els (44) and Jim Furyk (43) are the oldest players who are remaining in the sweet 16 at the WGC-Accenture Match Play.

    Hideki Matsuyama is just 21 years old and nearly made it into the final 16. Graeme McDowell never led in their match and took 19 holes to close out Matsuyama.

    He is someone to be reckoned with in the future on the PGA Tour. He has five wins in Japan and was a member of the 2013 International Presidents Cup team. 

    Other young players who made it past the first round but were eliminated in the second were Rory McIlroy (24), Matteo Manassero (20) and Patrick Reed (23).

    Jordan Spieth, Harris English, Rickie Fowler and Victor Dubuisson are four very talented young players under the age of 25 who did make it to the third round and have a chance of winning this week.  

Victor Dubuisson

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    Victor Dubuisson is into the round of 16 at the WGC-Accenture Match Play.
    Victor Dubuisson is into the round of 16 at the WGC-Accenture Match Play.Hassan Ammar/Associated Press/Associated Press

    Victor Dubuisson is from Cannes, France and is just 23 years old.

    He joined the European Tour in 2011 via the 2010 Q-School and got his first win last fall in the Turkish Airlines Open.

    He has risen to No. 30 in the Official World Golf Rankings and finished 2013 at No. 6 on the Race to Dubai rankings.

    The match play is his fourth start in the 2013-14 PGA Tour season. He has made every cut, and this is his second top-25 finish.

    Dubuisson beat Kevin Streelman in the first round and Peter Hanson in the second and will now meet Bubba Watson in the round of 16.

Rickie Fowler

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    Rickie Fowler beat Ian Poulter in the first round.
    Rickie Fowler beat Ian Poulter in the first round.Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images

    Rickie Fowler just turned 25 years old in December, but this is his sixth year on the PGA Tour.

    He only has one win but has never finished the year lower than No. 42 in the FedEx Cup standings and has earned more than $10 million.

    Even though he is a very consistent performer, he has sought instruction from Butch Harmon and is working to improve his swing.

    He was impressive in beating match play wizard,Ian Poulter in the first round and the world's hottest golfer Jimmy Walker in the second round.

    He will have his work cut out for him against Sergio Garcia in the third round.

    Fowler has fallen to No. 56 in the world.

    A signature win here would validate the new swing changes and give him added confidence heading into the majors this year.

Harris English

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    Harris English eliminated Rory McIlroy.
    Harris English eliminated Rory McIlroy.Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

    Harris English first gained prominence when he won the 2011 Nationwide Children's Invitational on the Web.com Tour while still an amateur and a member of the University of Georgia golf team.

    He has continued to impress with a win at the FedEx St. Jude Classic last year and a win already this season in Mexico.

    English (24), Rory McIlroy and Patrick Reed are the only golfers under the age of 25 to have won two PGA Tour events.  

    In addition to his win in Mexico, he has five top-10 finishes in nine starts thus far in 2013-14.

    He beat two former world No. 1-ranked players in the first two rounds, Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy.

    Many prognosticators were picking McIlroy to win this event. Does that make English the favorite now?

Jordan Spieth

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    Jordan Spieth beat Thomas Bjorn in the second round.
    Jordan Spieth beat Thomas Bjorn in the second round.Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

    Jordan Spieth had a magical season in 2013. He won the John Deere Classic, jumped into the top 50 in the world and was picked for the U.S. Presidents Cup team.

    He has continued his strong play this season with one runner-up and two top-10 finishes in his six starts.

    He beat Pablo Larrazabal in the first round and took out Thomas Bjorn 5 and 4 on Thursday.

    Spieth will now face defending champion Matt Kuchar, who loves this event and feels he has something to prove after missing the cut last week at Riviera.

    No easy matches are remaining at the WGC-Accenture Match Play, but Spieth has been rolling through his opponents thus far.

    If he can get by Kuchar, he may be the favorite to win this event, although he is only 20 years old.

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