Hyundai Tournament of Champions Betting Preview 2015

HTOC 2015 pic 1

Plantation Course, Kapalua, Hawaii
Par 73, 7,452 yards

The Course

Happy New Year! Let’s hope 2015 is a happy and profitable one! We kick off 2015 with The Hyundai Tournament of Champions, which starts this Friday. This tournament is only for previous winners and has a field of only 34.

The Plantation Course at Kapalua Resort is a par 73 measuring a lengthy 7,453 yards. It is quite open and runs along the slopes of the West Maui Mountains and is quite exposed to the elements. It generally suits the big hitters if they can keep it in the fairway with three of the four par 5’s reachable in two. The 18th is a 663 yard par 5 that plays a lot shorter, as it runs downhill and should be reachable by some of the longer hitters. It also has three par 3’s and 11 par 4’s.

Accuracy off the tee is not hugely important here as the fairways are quite wide and forgiving. The greens are also quite forgiving with some of the approaches having uphill and downhill slopes into the greens, which have some undulations. Good putters have done well here with the likes of Zach Johnson (2014), Dustin Johnson (2013) and Steve Stricker (2012, 2nd 2013) being past winners. With 11 par 4’s on this course, it is also worth considering par 4 scoring and GIR.

With the weather set to be calm and sunny with moderate winds, the scoring should be low with the winner averaging around the 20 under mark judging from previous years.

billy-horschel-pga-tour_r640

Billy Horchel 20/1
Billy had a superb end to last season finishing runner up in The Deutsche Bank, and then going on to win both The BMW Championship and The Tour Championship, taking home The FedExCup crown and a tasty 10 million bucks!

He had a good week at Tiger’s event recently, The Hero World Challenge finishing T8 shooting rounds of 73,72,67,67 on nine under par for the tournament. He also showed good signs the following week at The Franklin Templeton Shootout finishing T3 with Ian Poulter. Billy also played well here last year shooting rounds of 72,72,68,66 on his way to a respectable T6 finish.

Horchel ranks sixth in driving distance so far this season averaging an impressive 312 yards off the tee. Last season, he ranked fourth in GIR, 23rd in driving accuracy, 15th in par 5 scoring and second in putts from 5-10 feet. He is clearly showing some good form and could be one to watch here this week.

Jason Day 1

Jason Day 15/2
After an injury stricken 2014, Jason Day will be looking to start 2015 off with a bang finishing 2014 off with a win at The Franklin Templeton Shootout with Cameron Tringale. He also has a good week at The Hero World Challenge finishing solo 5th on 14 under par, which included an impressive final round 66.

After a win at The World Cup of Golf and The Accenture World Matchplay, Day also performed well in the last of the FedExCup playoffs at the end of October finishing T2 at The Barclays, T7 at The Deutsche Bank and T4 at The Tour Championship at East Lake. His last visit to Kapalua was in 2011 when he shot rounds of 73,66,69, 70 on his way to a T9th finish.

Last season, Day ranked 18th in driving distance, 20th in strokes gained putting, 29th in par 4 performance and first in putting from five feet. After two good performances in December, it appears Jason Day is back to full strength and could be a huge contender here.

Patrick Reed pic 2

Patrick Reed 22/1
Patrick Reed had a good start to the season with a respectable T26 at The CIMB Classic back in November. He then followed that with a T22 at The WGC HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

Most recently, Reed played well at The Hero World Challenge in Florida finishing T3, where he shot a 63 in round two and had another good performance the following week at The Franklin Templeton Shootout finishing T10 with partner Brandt Snedeker.

Reed played this event last year and carding rounds of 70, 72,67,73 on his way to a respectable T16, which is not bad for his first visit. He hasn’t missed a cut since The Open Championship last July and is becoming a very solid performer in big events. At 22/1 he seems to be good value for a player that has shown good recent form over the Christmas period.

First Round Leader Bets-

141st Open Championship - Round Three

Matt Kuchar 14/1
Kuchar has a good record at this event with four top 10’s in his last five appearances. He finished T6 last year, T9 in 2013, T6 in 2011 and solo 3rd in 2010. He started well in three of his last four appearances shooting an opening round 68 last year, 69 in 2011 and a 67 in 2010. Kuch also started well recently at The Hero World Challenge shooting an opening round 69 and has been as steady as they come in terms of consistency.

Ryan Moore pic 2

Ryan Moore 22/1
Moore is another player that has a good record around Kapalua finishing solo 10th last year and T6 in 2010. He has started strongly in two of his last three appearances shooting an opening round 67 last year and a 69 in 2010. Moore in another steady player and had a great start to his season winning the CIMB Classic for the second time, where he shot 68,69,67,67 finishing seventeen under par total for the tournament. After a few weeks off, he should be feeling fresh coming to a course he has played so well on in the past.

Final Selections –
Billy Horchel 1 pt EW 22/1
Jason Day 1 pt EW 15/2
Patrick Reed 1 pt EW 22/1

First Round Leader –
Matt Kuchar 1 pt EW 14/1
Ryan Moore 1 pt EW 22/1

Total staked = 10 pts

Good Luck and enjoy the golf,

Doublebogey6

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RBC Heritage Betting Preview

RBC Heritage Pic 2

Hilton Head, South Carolina
Par 71, 7,101 yards.

The Course
Hilton Head is a tight course with tree lined fairways and small greens so driving accuracy and greens in regulation will be two key stats to look at. With these greens being some of the smallest on tour, good scramblers and putters also tend to do well on this course. Hilton Head also tends to be quite windy so be on the lookout for good wind players.

The main stats to consider here are driving accuracy, GIR, par 4 scoring, scrambling and proximity to the hole. Unlike last week in Augusta National, you don’t need to be long on this course so a lot of the shorter more accurate players should come into the mix. Weather forecast is set for possible rain and thunder but the wind is predicted to be light, however there may be some weather delays.

Zach Johnson 20/1
Johnson seems to be a player that should really suit this course and ticks a lot of the statistical boxes. He comes into this week after missing the cut at The Masters but that wouldn’t hugely concern me here. Before the Masters, he had a good week at The Texas Open finishing in T6th on a total of five under par for the tournament. He was showing some very good form earlier in the season with a win at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions, T8 at The Sony in Hawaii and a T3rd at The Humana Challenge.

Zach finished second here in 2012 and sixth in 2007 so he has good previous form at Hilton Head. Statswise he ranks sixth in driving accuracy, 15th in GIR, 52nd in strokes gained putting, 13th I scrambling and seventh in par 4 performance. He also ranks third in putts from 25 feet which should be a big help around these small greens. He played well in Texas recently and should be a big contender here.

Luke Donald 18/1
Luke Donald is another player with a good history at Hilton Head. He finished third last year, 37th in 2012, second in 2011, third in 2010 and second gain in 2009. Luke’s form has been good lately playing well at The Valspar Championship a couple of weeks ago finishing T4th. He also played well at The Honda Classic at PGA National finishing in T8th.

Donald ranks seventh in strokes gained putting, third in scrambling, first in GIR from 100 yards and eighth in total putting. He is also a very accurate iron player which should be a huge advantage around this tight course. With great previous form here over the years, not to mention some good recent performances, Luke could be another big danger man here this week.

RBC Heritage LD Pic 1

Harris English 25/1
English is having a good season so far and has been in the winner’s circle already this year with a victory at The OHL Classic in El Cameleon in Mexico back in November. Hilton Head is a similar layout to El Cameloen in that both courses demand accuracy off the tee, good GIR stats, are similar in length (6,923 yard par 71) and are prone to windy conditions. This is a big reason why I think this man could go very well here.

He has also shown some good recent from with 9th at The Phoenix Open, T10th at The Northern Trust Open, T9th at The Accenture Matchplay, T16 at The Cadillac and most recently a T14 finish in Bay Hill. He has played well here in the past finishing eighth back in 2012. English also seems to tick the statistical boxes here ranking 30th in total driving, second in GIR, first in par 4 performance and second in par 5 performance. He is playing well at present and has proven that he can win on tight windy courses before, which makes him a big threat here this week.

Will MacKenzie 40/1
MacKenzie is a player right on the cusp of a win and it could be any day now. He has four top seven’s in his last seven starts and is a player bang in form at the moment. He played well at The Farmers in Torrey Pines finishing T7th, T6th at The Honda Classic, T4th at The Valspar Championship and most recently, he played well at The Texas Open finishing T2nd.

He ranks 34th in total driving, 32nd in GIR, 11th in strokes gained putting, 17th in par 4 performance, third in par 3 performance and 12th in par 5 performance. He also ranks 28th in total putting and 13th in birdie or better conversion percentage. All in all a very solid player so far this season and looks to be knocking on the door for the last few weeks.

Chris Stroud 33/1
Chris is playing well over the last few weeks with three top 12’s in his last five starts. He had a good week at The Honda finishing T12th and followed that with a T9th in Puerto Rico. Most recently, he finished T12th at The Houston Open shooting seven under par in total. Stroud also performed well earlier in the season with a T3 at The OHL Classic in El Cameleon, which as I mentioned above, is similar to Hilton Head. He also had a good performance here last year finishing sixth.

Statswise he ranks 45th in driving accuracy, 27th in GIR, sixth in par 3 performance and 13th in par 4 performance. Stroud also has good putting stats ranking 16th in total putting and fourth in scrambling, which will be a big help on these small, tricky greens.

Final selections:
Zach Johnson 2 pts/4 pts ew
Luke Donald 2 pts/4 pts ew
Harris English 1.5 pts/3 pts ew
Will MacKenzie 1 pt/2 pts ew
Chris Stroud 1 pt/2 pts ew
Total staked – 15 pts

Good luck and enjoy the golf,

DB

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The Masters Betting Preview

The Masters Betting Preview 2014
Augusta National Golf Club, Augusta, Georgia
Par 72, 7,435 yards

The Masters 2014 pc 1

The Course
Well it’s the first major of 2014 and in my opinion, one of the best. Augusta National is one of the most beautiful, eye catching courses on the planet and has seen so much emotion over the years. The course was opened in January 1933 and has undergone a lot of changes since then. It is a long demanding test with very tricky greens and lots of run off areas.

There is a big emphasis on length and accuracy here with this course measuring just under 7,500 yards so it will certainly favour the bombers but also the accurate players. Previous experience will also be import here ( Phil, Kuchar, Scott etc..) not to mention a very good putter. Many of the holes are dog legs so players that can shape the ball will have a big advantage. Greens in Regulation is another stat to consider here as the greens are big and slopey so hitting the ball in the right portion of the green with a high ball flight will be very important.

An ability to chip and putt well is also worth considering as Augusta has a lot of run off areas. Par 5 scoring will be a factor as most of them are reachable in two.

Phil Mickelson 14/1
Phil’s record at The Masters over the years is beyond impressive. He has won this tournament three times, 2004, 2006 and 2010. He has nine top ten’s in the last 11 years and comes off a very respectable finish in Houston last week coming in T12th. It looks to me that Phil seems to be over the worst with the back injury and seems to be fit and healthy again. He is a natural fader of the golf ball and with him being left handed, should suit here.

Mickelson’s superb short game will also be a huge advantage with a good touch being essential around these tricky greens. His putting stats are also quite good so far this year ranking seventh in putts from 5-10 feet, tenth in putts from 5-15 feet, 24th in scrambling from the rough and 17th in par 4 performance. His record here speaks for itself and with a good finish in Houston last week, I expect Phil to be a big contender here and could very well pick up his fourth green jacket.

Henrik Stenson 28/1
Stenson seems to be coming into some good form lately and played well in Bay Hill finishing fifth. He had a poor week last week in Houston finishing T54th but seemed to be striking the ball well. He has played well here at The Masters over the years with three top 20’s in his previous eight starts including a T18th last year. He was one of the most accurate players off the tee at The Arnold Palmer co leading fairways hit and hitting the most greens in regulation.

Last season, Stenson ranked third in total driving, sixth in par 5 birdie or better leaders, sixth in par 5 performance and first in GIR. With stats to suit this course and coming here after some fine tuning in Houston last week, Stenson is another player that has played well here in the past and could be a huge contender especially on the par 5’s.

Bubba Watson 28/1
The 2012 champion is having a great year so far with a victory already under his belt this season which came at The Northern Trust Open back in the middle of February. Bubba has a victory and five other top 10’s in his last eight starts which includes his withdrawal from Bay hill due to bad hay fever. He came very close to winning in Phoenix where he missed a tricky five foot putt and handed victory to Kevin Stadler. However he comes to Augusta off the back of a very good T2nd finish at The WGC Cadillac.

As I said in the course preview, length is a big factor here in Augusta which Bubba has in spades. He leads driving distance on the PGA Tour hitting it an average of 317 yards off the tee. He also ranks 39th in total driving, 16th in GIR, fourth in par 4 birdie or better leaders, 10th in par 4 performance and 11th in par 3 performance. His putting stats also look very favorable here ranking first in putts from 15-25 feet, fourth in putts from 15-20 feet and seventh in putts from inside 5 feet. Bubba comes to Augusta in great form and I can’t see any reason why it wouldn’t continue here, on a stage where he has performed so well on in the past.

The Masters 2014 pc 2

Zach Johnson 28/1
The 2007 winner comes to Augusta on the back of a recent T6 finish at The Valero Texas Open. Johnson is another player with a victory already in the bag this season with a win at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions back in January. He then followed that with a T8 at The Sony and a T3 at The Humana Challenge which included a superb final round of 62. His form then took a bit of dip for a couple of events with a couple of T33 finishes at The WGC Matchplay and The Honda Classic. However he seems to be back to himself and had a great performance in Texas.

Johnson ranks fourth in driving accuracy, 11th in GIR, eighth in birdie average, third in par 3 performance and seventh in par 4 performance. He also ranks 11th in scrambling, first in putts from 25+ feet and 11th in proximity to the hole. Despite Zach’s lack of length, his accurate driver and irons should do more than enough to make up for it here.

Matt Kuchar 20/1
What a huge disappointment it was for Matt Kuchar not to finish the job last week in Houston. A poor approach shot and a superb chip from Matt Jones shut the door on Kuch’s chances of victory. However, that was his eighth top 10 finish in his last 11 starts so he’s obviously doing something right. His record at Augusta National has been very good over the last couple of years finishing eighth last year and third in 2012.

Kuchar ranks eighth in scoring average, 15th in scrambling, fourth in par 4 performance and 16th in GIR from 200+ yards, which will be a big advantage on these par 5’s. He also has good putting stats ranking 12th in putts from 20-25 feet, 14th in putts from 15-25 feet and 13th in 3 putt avoidance. With great current form and a good history, Kuchar could be a big contender here in Augusta.

Charl Schwartzel 33/1
With a win here in 2011, Charl Schwartzel is another past champion in with a big shout here and looks to be playing well over the last few weeks. He has two top 10’s in his last four starts on the PGA Tour with a solo fifth at The Northern Trust Open, T9 at the WGC Cadillac and a top 20 last week in Houston finishing T19th. Charl has also been playing well on the European Tour this season with a win at The Alfred Dunhill in early December and followed that with a solo 6th at The Nedbank Challenge the following week.

Schwartzel ranks sixth in driving distance on the European Tour, first in putts per GIR and third in putts per round. Last year on the PGA Tour, he ranked 29th in driving distance, fifth in birdie average, third in birdie or better conversion percentage, fourth in par 5 birdie or better leaders and 12th in par 4 birdie or better leaders. Schwartzel is playing well at the moment and has a good history here at Augusta National.

OUTSIDERS –

Jimmy Walker 66/1
Jimmy walker has been one of the superstars of the PGA Tour this season with three victories under his belt already this season which came at The Frys.com Open in October, The Sony Open in January and the AT&T in Pebble Beach in February.

Despite this being his first visit, Walker also seems to have the stats to go well here, ranking 13th in driving distance, second in strokes gained putting and third in birdie or better conversion percentage. He also ranks second in par 4 performance and ninth in par 5 performance.

Patrick Reed 66/1
Patrick Reed is another player with two victories on tour this year which came at The Humana Challenge back in January and another at The WGC Cadillac at the start of March. He also had top 15 at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions and in Pebble beach. Coming here off a T52 at The Arnold Palmer and should be well rested after taking a break last week. Has said that he played here during his college days so he is no stranger to Augusta National.

Reed ranks 38th in driving distance, 22nd in strokes gained putting, 15th in par 4 birdie or better leaders, 22nd in par 5 birdie or better leaders and 14th in total putting.

Harris English 66/1
Another first timer here but also another winner on tour this year with a win at The OHL Classic back in November. He also has top 10’s at the Sony, Phoenix Open, WGC Matchplay and comes here off a T14th at The Arnold Palmer after taking the last couple of weeks off.

English ranks 22nd in driving distance, first in GIR, 11th in birdie or better conversion percentage, second in par 5 performance and first in par 4 performance. Had a hole in one here in practice on the 12th a couple of days ago and looks to be sharp.

Final selections –
Phil Mickelson 2pts/ 4pts EW
Henrik Stenson 1.5 pt/ 3 pts EW
Bubba Watson 2 pts/ 4 pts EW
Zach Johnson 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Matt Kuchar 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Charl Scwartzel 1 pt/ 2 pts EW

Long Shots –
Jimmy Walker 0.5 pts/ 1 pt EW
Patrick Reed 0.5 pts/ 1 pt EW
Harris English 0.5 pts/ 1 pt EW

Total staked – 20 pts

Good luck and enjoy the golf,

Doublebogey6

Shell Houston Open Betting Preview

Shell Houston Open Pic 1

Golf Club of Houston, Humble, Texas
7,441 yards, par 72

The Course
The Golf Club of Houston is a decent test measuring just short of 7,500 yards. The course is set up to replicate the Augusta for next week and has a particular emphasis on length. For example, the four par 5’s on this course all measure over 550 yards. The par 4’s will also require length with the 5th, 6th, 17th and 18th all measuring over 460 yards.

The main stats to consider here this week is obviously length, along with good par 3, par 4, par 5 scoring stats. The greens here are also quite tricky (like Augusta) with tight banks and plenty of run off areas so be on the lookout for guys with good greens in regulation stats. The greens here will be pretty quick measuring roughly 13 on the stimpmeter so strokes gained putting will be another stat to consider on this course.

Keegan Bradley 22/1
Watching Keegan playing the final stretch of 16, 17and 18 in Bay Hill was impressive. He birdied 16 and 17 handy enough and I honestly thought he would get that 30+ foot putt on 18 to force Matt Every to a playoff, but thankfully he didn’t. The reason being is I had Mr Every backed and wouldn’t have been too pleased if Keegan did make the putt. Having said that he did play well and ended up carding a final round 72 to finish in solo second.

In his last two trips to this tournament he has finished 10th in 2013 and fourth in 2012. Statswise he should suit this course ranking 22nd in driving distance hitting an average of 299 yards off the tee. He also ranks 11th in birdie average, 17th in par 5 birdie or better leaders, 11th birdie or better conversion percentage and 12th in par 3 performance. With a good track record on this course and good current form, Bradley looks like a huge contender here this week.

Henrik Stenson 18/1
The FedEx Cup champion is starting to show some form with a great performance at Bay Hill finishing in T5th. Despite a poor round of 73, he shot three rounds in the 60’s to finish on 9 under in total. Stenson is another player with good history at this event finishing in second last year and third in 2009. He was one of the most accurate players off the tee at The Arnold Palmer co leading fairways hit and hitting the most greens.

Last season Stenson ranked third in total driving, sixth in par 5 birdie or better leaders, sixth in par 5 performance and first in GIR. With stats to suit this course and coming here off a fifth at The Arnold Palmer, not to mention a good history on this course, Stenson is another huge contender here in Houston.

Shell Houston Open Pic 2

Graham DeLaet 33/1
DeLaet is having a super season so far with two top five’s at the beginning of February, which came at The Farmers at Torrey Pines finishing in T2nd and then followed that with another T2nd in Phoenix. He also played very well at The Valspar Championship despite shooting a disappointing first round 75 finishing inT8th and two under par in total.

DeLaet is one of the bigger hitters on tour ranking eighth in driving distance hitting an average of 308 yards off the tee, perfect for this sort of course. He also ranks fourth in GIR, 28th in par 5 birdie or better leaders, ninth in par 3 performance and fourth in GIR from 200+. He is also another player that has a good history on this course finishing third in 2010.

Jason Kokrak 50/1
I reckon this man should suit this track with his length. He came close at Bay Hill a couple of weeks ago and played superbly well throughout the week to finish solo fourth.

Kokrak started well last week in Texas but had a slight hiccup in the third round shooting a disappointing 77 and ended up finishing T31st. Along with his great performance at Bay Hill, Kokrak also played well at The Valspar finishing T14th, 15th in Phoenix and T19th at Pebble Beach earlier in February so he is showing signs of good form and consistency in his last seven events.

He is one of the biggest hitters on tour and has the ability to dominate these long par 5’s and tricky par 4’s. He ranks fifth in driving distance, 18th in par 4 birdie or better leaders, 11th in par 4 performance and second in approaches from 200 yards. He played well in 2010 finishing in third and comes here this week in decent form.

Charley Hoffman 66/1
Hoffman is another player with a good history at this event with a handful of top 25’s over the last few years including a sixth place finish in 2008. He also had a good week in Texas shooting three 70’s and a 75 on his way to a respectable T11th finish.

Hoffman has shown some good recent form playing well at The Northern Trust Open a couple of weeks ago finishing in T12th. He’s had some good performances so far this season with a T9th at The Humana Challenge and a T7th at The Farmers in Torrey Pines.

Statswise, Hoffman ranks 16th in driving distance, 20th in GIR, 12th in par 3 performance, 24th in par 4 performance and fifth in approaches from 175-200 yards. A very big price for a guy with a decent shout here.

Final Selections:
Keegan Bradley 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Henrik Stenson 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Graham DeLaet 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Jason Kokrak 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Charley Hoffman 1 pt/ 2 pts EW
Total staked = 10 pts

Good luck and enjoy the golf,

DB

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The guys over at Golf Betting System are running a Majors Competition again for 2014 and have a £150 or currency equivalent up for grabs from bet365. The competition is already up and running with only a few days left to enter!

All of the details on how you can enter the competition are here: http://www.golfbettingsystem.co.uk/golf-majors-competition-2014-rules.htm

Good luck!!