Tuesday, 5 February 2013

AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am - 2013

On the PGA circuit this week we are faced with the second pro-am of the year to be held over three courses at  Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and the Monterey Penisula. The pros will play with their celebrity partners over 54 holes on each of the three courses before the cut is made and the final round is played on Pebble Beach. Again, as with the Humana a few weeks ago, some pros will love this format and others will hate it. And there will be some who simply love playing these courses as 4-time winner and twice winner, Phil Mickelson & Dustin Johnson respectively have shown. No surprise then as to who leads the betting market, but at 15/2 generally, you would need to be very confident that either are ready to win for the second time in 2013 already. Well, obviously with a win under their belt, they are ready, but can they ? Lefty was awesome last week in his wire to wire and will be brimming with confidence. Its a quality field assembled here and its made even more fascinating with a lot of the young talent that is evident on tour also playing. So how do we pick a likely winner?
Course form and players suited to both the pro-am format and the conditions really need to be factored in this week, and, try as I could, I could not delete my fellow Dubliner, Padraig Harrington from my shortlist. A proven links player, a proven wind player and a proven scrambler are vital ingredients for this week. And as for the Pro-Am format? Winner of the European equivalent, the Dunhill, complemented with an excellent record in the AT&T, you can be assured he and and his amateur partner, businessman and top race owner, JP McManus will be out to complete the double. Harrington is playing very well the past 6 months and I for one am delighted to see a fairly busy schedule being undertaken by the Stackstown man and I cannot pass on him this week at 25/1 as I feel that schedule will reap the rewards.
My second pick is Hunter Mahan with the risk of you, the reader, beginning to question my wisdom of sticking with him for three straight weeks. Tied 15th & T16th the past two weeks shows solid form and inevitably he will convert his good iron play into some success. He always strives in the bigger tournaments and this one will suit his temperament. He is included on the back of decent outings the past two weeks and at 28/1 its a definite pick.He also has a good record here the past couple of seasons.
Third up is Ricky Barnes @ 150/1. Ricky is always a player suited to these conditions with the flight of his ball ideal for wind. He has not been in great form recently, but Stephen Gallacher's win in Dubai last week does prove that certain courses bring out the best in players and this event could be the catalyst for a good season ahead.
I am putting up a fourth selection in the shape of Scott Langley who ran Russell Henley so close in Hawaii in January. 175/1 is too big for this rookie who almost won last month and his comments that week in Maui that the stronger the wind the better has not ben forgotten and hence a small investment is taken to see just how good he likes the wind......let's hope I get some wind then ! Time will tell whether Langley will be a regular on the leaderboards but for this week I think its worth having a small interest.

TIP 1 : 1 pt e/w Padraig Harrington @ 25/1 Betpack(money back offer if beaten in a playoff)

TIP 2: 1 pt e/w Hunter Mahan @ 28/1 Paddypower

TIP 3: 0.5 pts e/w R.Barnes @ 150/1 Betpack(money back offer if beaten in a playoff)



TIP 4:  0.5 pts e/w Scott Langley @ 175/1 Betpack(money back offer if beaten in a playoff)