The PGA Tour travels to Massachusetts this week for the Deutsche Bank Championship and the second leg of the lucrative FedEx Cup playoffs. Rory McIlroy defends the title at TPC Boston.

Played over Labor Day weekend, the tournament finishes on Monday. Labor Day is a holiday celebrated by most Americans as the symbolic end of the summer.

This tournament began life back in 2003 when last week’s winner of The Barclays Adam Scott took the title. Since then, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh and Steve Stricker have all been victorious in this event. Last year, Rory McIlroy took a memorable win. The young Northern Irishman finished one clear of South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen.

Three former champions will be paired together in a thrilling three-ball this week. Currently placed 1st, 2nd and 3rd on the FedEx Cup standings, Tiger Woods, Adam Scott and Phil Mickelson will play together in the first two rounds.

The TPC Boston opened for play in June 2002, it’s a private members’ course designed by Arnold Palmer course design. It tends to play as one of the easiest courses on the PGA Tour schedule so expect to see low scoring this week.

With good weather forecast, there should be nothing to prevent low numbers being posted. Watch for the man with a red-hot putter to come out on top.

Venue: TPC Boston, Norton, Massachusetts
Date: Aug 30 – Sep 2
Course stats: par 71, 7,216 yards
Purse: $8,000,000 Winner: $1,440,000
Defending Champion: Rory McIlroy (-20)

TV Coverage:

Friday 30 – Sky Sports Xtra from 8pm
Saturday 31 – Sky Sports 3 from 7pm
Sunday 1 – Sky Sports 4 from 6pm
Monday 2 – Sky Sports 3 from 4.30pm

Player Watch:
Webb Simpson – Champion here in 2011, Simpson was in contention at The Barclays at the halfway point. Although he faded somewhat, he’s clearly on form and returns to a course he knows well and has great memories from.

Keegan Bradley – He’s the home favourite and will look to improve on a tied 13th place in this event last year. If he can get his game-face on he could be a contender this week.

Bill Haas – Has never missed the cut at TPC Boston. He was a little off-form last week but led the field in scrambling. If he can find a few more greens at TPC Boston, he could feature.

Key hole:
18th. Traditionally one of the most straightforward holes on the course, this par 5 was altered slightly for 2012. It’s still reachable in two for most of the players but the green has been moved, lifted and reduced in size. Tricky run-off areas have been created around the playing surface, placing a premium on the short-game. Expect some excitement if a player needs to get up and down for the title.

Where next?
European Tour –
ISPS Handa Wales Open preview