Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club (West Course), Malaysia
Par 72, 6,985 yards
The PGA Tour travels to Malaysia this week for the CIMB Classic. This is the second time Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club is hosting the event and has also played host to the Malaysian Open on The European Tour for the last few years.
The event took place for the first time back in 2010 at The Mines Resort and Country Club in Selangor, which is located just outside Kuala Lumpur where Ben Crane was crowned the winner on 18 under par. Last year however, the scoring wasn’t quite as low with this course proving a little more difficult when Ryan Moore was the winner on 14 under.
The course is a par 71 measuring a short 6,985 yards and has four par 5’s, four par 3’s and 12 par 4’s. The fairways are fairly forgiving so accuracy won’t be too much of an issue however length will be a big advantage especially on the four par 5’s. The greens here are large and guarded by lots of bunkers so good GIR stats are worth mentioning. There are a lot of water hazards present on this course with some holes offering some risk reward shots especially on the par 5’s and some of the short par 4’s.
The main areas of focus for me here are current form and previous form, GIR, GIR tee to green and driving distance.
Hideki Matsuyama 14/1
Matsuyama has started the season well with two top 10’s in his opening two events on The PGA Tour. He finished T3 at The Frys.com Open at Silverado on 12 under par and followed that with another good performance at The Shriners Open in Vegas finishing on 13 under par in total, which included a final round 66. He started well here last year shooting an opening round of 70 and played better in round two shooting a 68. However in round three and four he shot 72,74 to finish in a respectable T25 on four under par but comes here this week in much better form.
Statswise he ranks 23rd in driving distance hitting it an average of 306 yards off the tee. He also ranks 11th in GIR, 10th in strokes gained tee to green, ninth in par 3 performance and ninth in par 4 performance. With a solid start to the season and a respectable previous performance, Matsuyama looks like a worthy second favourite and well worth backing.
Graham DeLaet 28/1
With only one start under his belt this season, Graham DeLaet comes to Malaysia this week rested after a respectable T39 at The Frys. He had a good finish to the season with a T15 at The PGA Championship and a solo 11th at The BMW Championship. Graham had a good week here last year shooting rounds of 72,67,68,71 to finish T7. He then went on to finish in the top 10 in his next four events including The HSBC Champions in Shanghai and The Farmers Insurance Open.
DeLaet ticks a lot of boxes statswise ranking 14th in driving distance last year hitting it an average of 303 yards off the tee. He also ranked third in GIR, 10th in strokes gained tee to green, 33rd in par 3 performance and 24th in par 4 performance. With a strong finish to the season and a good performance here last year, DeLaet could be one to watch here.
Paul Casey 28/1
After struggling for a long time with various injuries, it’s good to see Paul Casey back playing good golf. He has played well this season on both the European Tour and PGA Tour recording his first win of the year at The KLM Open in Holland a few weeks ago. He played well at the end of The FedEx cup Playoffs finishing a respectable T18 at The Wyndham and T22 at The Barclays. Most recently, he had a good week at The Volvo World Matchplay finishing in T9th.
He has performed well in Asia over the last number of years recording a T8th at The Volvo China Open in 2013, 10th at The Singapore Open in 2011 and a 6th at The 2010 BMW Masters at Sheshan International in Shanghai.
On the European Tour, he ranks 35th in driving distance hitting it an average of 293 yards and seventh in GIR. With such a good record in Asia and good current form, Casey could be another danger man here this week.
Seung Yul Noh 33/1
Noh comes here after a solid performance at The Kolon Korea Open last week finishing second to Seung Hyuk Kim. Noh had a good season on The PGA Tour recording his first win, which came at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans back in March. He also finished well with a T23 at The BMW Championship and a T9 at The Deutsche Bank.
Noh has won here at Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club before winning the 2010 Malaysian Open beating KJ Choi by one stroke to finish on 14 under for the tournament. Last season he ranked 40th in driving distance, 38th in GIR and 39th in par 5 performance. He also ranked third in GIR from 100-125 and first in GIR from 125 yards, which are two good stats for approaches into these short par 4’s.
Angelo Que 125/1
Que has been playing solid for the last few weeks on The Asian Tour with three top 10’s in his last six starts. His good form started a few weeks ago at The Yeangder TPC in Taiwan where he finished 8th after a disappointing third round 76. He then went on to have another good week at The Mercuries Taiwan Masters finishing 9th after a disappointing opening round 75. Que then put together four rounds in the sixties shooting 65,69,67,66 to finish second at The Hong Kong Open, so his current form is good.
He has played well on this course in the past finishing T10 on eight under par at The Malaysian Open in 2010. He ranks 34th in driving distance on The Asian Tour averaging 296 off the tee. With good current form and a good performance here in the past, Angelo Que is certainly worth a small each way wager.
Hideki Matsuyama 1.5 pts EW at 14/1
Graham DeLaet 1.5 pts EW at 28/1
Paul Casey 1.5 pts EW at 28/1
Seung Yul Noh 1.5 pts EW at 33/1
Angelo Que 1 pt EW at 125/1
Total staked = 14 pts
Good luck and enjoy the golf,
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