Sahith Theegala: Houston Open ‘home game’ presents breakthrough opportunity

Sahith Theegala is eying his second PGA Tour victory this week at the Texas Children’s Houston Open.

This will be his third start at the Houston Open, and now that he has the 2023 Fortinet Championship win under his belt, he is even more excited about the opportunity to win this title.

While originally from California, he moved to Houston, making this a home game for him.

“It’s always a nice thing when you’re sleeping in your bed for the week,” Theegala said. It does feel like a third home game — third year in a row doing that. I’m excited. I’m really happy the schedule is how it is now with Houston being in the spring.”

There is a big change for this event in 2024. The tournament no longer happens in November but ahead of the Valero Open, giving Texas back-to-back events before the first major championship at Augusta National.

Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

“I think it makes a lot of sense with the Florida swing right before,” he said. “It already feels more low-key in a sense. I woke up this morning; my girlfriend made me breakfast; I did my morning coffee routine and drove up here. Those little things feel nice this week. I’m very excited to be here. I know a lot of my friends and family will be out, so that’s exciting, too.

The 26-year-old’s best finish came last year when he was T22. He fired off a 64 on Sunday and called it one of his best professional rounds of golf.

“I think I started the round in 60th and shot 6-under and found myself in 22nd at 4-under. It’s a tough course, and I know corresponding scores are not going to be super low,” Theegala said.

Memorial Golf Course is a challenging track for these players, but Theegala loves it. His favorite kind of golf happens on these difficult courses.

“I don’t know if my track record’s necessarily better on hard golf courses, but I just feel like I love hard golf courses because par is much more important,” Theegala said. “It’s nice starting the week knowing you don’t have to shoot 22 or 25 under to win the tournament. You plot your way around the golf course, shoot a couple under per nine, and you could be right there come Sunday.”

With him being within driving distance, this could be the week Theegala wins that illustrious second PGA Tour victory. Winning one is hard enough, but winning the second is even more challenging.

In 2024, Theegala has one runner-up finish at The Sentry, four top-10s and five top-25s in his eight starts. His last start came at The Players Championship, where he recorded a T9. He was coming off a T6 finish at Bay Hill for the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Could this be the week for Theegala to do something special?

Savannah Leigh Richardson is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. For more golf coverage, be sure to follow us @_PlayingThrough on all major social platforms. You can also follow her on Twitter @SportsGirlSL and Instagram @savannah_leigh_sports.

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