Written by
Joy Chakravarty, LIV Golf Correspondent
Apr 04 2024
- 4 MIN
Crushers Miami Preview

In the build-up to LIV Golf Miami, Bryson DeChambeau may have his mind wandering ahead next week to the Masters, the first major championship of the year, but come game time on Friday, his focus will firmly be on winning his first LIV Golf title of the 2024 season.

That’s the mantra that seems to be working well for the Crushers – each team member aims for individual glory, and a good team score seems to be a natural by-product. Crushers may not have won any Individual titles this season, but they have been absolutely stunning in winning back-to-back team titles in Jeddah and Hong Kong.

At LIV Golf Jeddah, it was probably the best team championship of LIV Golf’s short history as Crushers tallied an incredible 20-under par in Sunday’s final round to make up for an 11-shot deficit and win by four shots. DeChambeau led the charge with a stunning 62, and with all four scores counting, Charles Howell III (64), Anirban Lahiri (65) and Paul Casey (69) added to the remarkable climax. It was the biggest comeback by a team in LIV Golf history.

Crushers continued in the same vein in Hong Kong. Seemingly out of the reckoning halfway through Sunday in rainy and cold conditions, Casey shot 4-under for his last six holes, while DeChambeau was 3-under. Lahiri, struggling with the flu, made two birdies in his last six holes and Howell did not drop a shot. That team show helped them come back from seven shots behind to beat Torque by two.

Such has been DeChambeau’s form since the middle of the last season that he seems to be threatening the 60 barrier every time he tees up. He already has two 62s and a 63 in four tournaments. No wonder everyone keeps asking him the Masters question.

“You want to make sure that you are focused and ready for the next week. Obviously, it’s a major. But I still want to win this week,” said DeChambeau.

“I’d like to control those emotions. I realize and respect what the Masters is, but focus on each day and on doing things the best you possibly can that day. Hopefully, it accumulates to playing really good golf over the next couple weeks. That’s the mindset I have.”

A three-peat has never been achieved in LIV Golf and that’s exactly what Crushers will aim to do.

“We are all trying to be a little selfish and push for individual wins,” said Casey, who came agonizingly close to winning his first title in Hong Kong before losing in a playoff to Abraham Ancer. “It’s just helping us play better as a team.”

It’s not just during the competition that the Crushers have relied on brothers-in-arms feeling.

“Our team has done pretty well this year and last year. From the team aspect, I just think it’s awesome how we can get together, come together and when people are struggling, when teammates are struggling, you can lift them up, pick them up,” said DeChambeau.

“That was a big thing last year. I was struggling pretty badly and Paul, Charles and Baan were like, ‘Dude, let’s figure this out. Let’s go. They even came to the driving range and helped me figure out my golf swing and whatnot.

“It’s cool to have that aspect and feels very much like college golf and that's what I like so much. It’s just being around a group of guys that you enjoy and can have a good time with on and off the golf course.”

The Trump National Doral has great memories for Crushers. On Sunday of the Team Championship last year, they were an unstoppable force and ran away from the chasing teams.

“It’s a tough golf course where you have got to make every shot count. There are courses where you can get away from a couple of loose shots here and there, but not at Doral,” said Lahiri, who shot a spectacular bogey-free 7-under 65 as Crushers reached 11-under and won by two in Tier I.

“So, we have had some very frustrating times (when they lost on Saturday of the 2022 Team Championship) and some great memories from last year. It’s a different time of the year and it’s a new tournament, but we can’t wait for the tournament to start and try to get that third straight win for the team.”