Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Italian Open & The Memorial Selections 2018

Two shortlists published this week for both The Italian open and The Memorial on the Europeantour and PGA respectively. The shortlists continue to narrow the field and find the winners. This season alone the European shortlists have found 7 winners from 14, the PGA 8 from 13. Whether the "value" has been got though is unclear but as the young guns of world golf begin to stamp their authority on the big tournaments, perhaps more focus is required towards the head of the markets in those events such as the Rolex Series, Majors and big OWGR(SOF-wise) tournaments.

I found it hard to look past the market leaders in both events. In Brescia, I think it could be between Tommy & Alex Noren whilst Francesco Molinari could do the unthinkable and win so soon after winning just week. Chris Wood would be idea of an e/w bet here if picking just one player. He has form on tree-lined courses and his schedule has been light following injury but has eased back into the tour of late with some decent showings and could spring a surprise here at a nice price.

At The Memorial, Matt Kuchar should get back on track but the field is awesome and any of the top players could prevail. Jordan Spieth needs a big week but I don't think he'll find a result here, he's only got eyes for Shinnecock in a couple of weeks anyway so he's sure to be trying things here. Kevin Tway is one of the outsiders I like here.

I'm doing the following this week in both events as per the table below. A total of 22 pts outlay (10 pts in Italy and 12 pts at Jack's Place). I think it also gives me some trading options.

A TOP-20 selection in each in the shape of Jens Danthorp and Chesson Hadley @ 6.00 & 4.00 respectively.

Meanwhile, I 'll be watching the Women's US Open hoping Lydia Ko has a good one as well as Olivia Mehaffey.

Both Draftkings and Playon have games for The Memorial this week whilst The Italian Open DFS games can be found at Draftkings. (PlayOn have advised me though that they are working towards new formats for the Europeantour and hope to have these available very shortly - you can open an account with them and use my code "B1RDIE" to get a free entry)

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

BMW PGA Championship - Wentworth GC, England

Often dubbed the Europeantour's "Flagship" event, this week's BMW PGA Championship kicks off the season's Rolex Series at Wentworth GC in Surrey, England. Its a quality field teeing it up and hopefully it signals the start of quality summer golf tournaments coming our way. It's certainly a good betting heat this week and any number of players can boast the right credentials to win here this week.

Alex Noren defends having blitzed the field twelve months ago with a final round 62 to grab the title from course specialist, Franceso Molinari. The Swede boasts a further 2 TOP-10s in his previous 9 starts here and he arrives here in much better form than in previous years having produced some eye-catching results of late on the PGA Tour. He will face tough competition from former course winners, Rory McIlroy, Paul Casey, Chris Wood, and Matteo Mannasero. Throw in course specialists i.e. those with multiple TOP-10s, Molinari (5 TOP-10s in last 6 visits), Branden Grace (3 TOP-11s in 5 visits), Ross Fisher (3 TOP-10s in 9 visits), Martin Kaymer (6 TOP-20s in 9 visits), Chris Wood ( a win and 2 other TOP-10s in 7 visits), Shane Lowry (4 TOP-10s in 8 visits plus another TOP-15) as well as Lee Westwood (3 TOP-10s & 3 TOP-15s in his 11 last visits), as well as the course form of Pablo Larrazabal, Joost Luiten, Nicholas Colsaerts, Soren Kjeldsen, Marc Warren, Thomas Aiken, James Morrison, Mikko Ilonen, Thomas Bjorn, and Peter Hanson. Ian Poulter has had some decent results here too. Pick your winner !

Ernie Els has been busy redesigning Wentworth over the past number of years and by all accounts, the course looks to be at it's best in 2018. Ball strikers with a decent short game should be the ones to look at for the week ahead and the shortlist published on Monday finalized on 17 players with 9 of those I deemed to be of value based on the chances of those skillsets mentioned as indicators to success. I've left out Rory based on price alone and same can be applied to the defending champ @ 14s. Tommy Fleetwood could have a good week here, but only one decent result to date at the Surrey venue isn't ideal for a player quoted at the same price as Noren. Given the weather forecast looks favourable too, I'm keen to play those in form of late and those with course experience. Ross Fisher is playing a lot better than results have shown, but back at his home course and with a bit of value in his price, he can't be dismissed lightly. 65.00 on the exchange may also give us some trading options and his playing partners in Rafa Cabrera Bello & Padraig Harrington make for a good threeball over the first two days. A good start early Thursday morning is vital. 50/1 with 7 places is also an option.

I was keen on Paul Dunne this week but his price continues to be far too short these days. I want Martin Kaymer to return to the winners enclosure very soon as I believe Shinnecock Hills next month will be to his liking for the US Open and he'll be looking for form here and next week in Italy before heading for New York. As alluded to already in this post, this week kick starts a summer campaign of quality tournaments and the German will need to capitalize soon if he is to have any chance of making the Ryder Cup team.He made my shortlist based on course ability but his recent form is a concern hence the price and he's one I may get on side in-play as he has an afternoon tee-time Thursday.

My staking plan though this week will include recent PGA Tour winner, Paul Casey who will be on the Ryder Cup team in September. Casey is a decent price @ 16.00 for this as I had him a good bit shorter towards the head of the market.Interestingly, he plays alongside Kaymer for the first two rounds. Casey saw off the challenge of Tiger Woods and Patrick Reed when winning the Valspar Championship in March and followed up with a 15th placing at Augusta and a TOP-5 at Quail Hollow last time out to reach the TOP-10 in the OWGR rankings. Refreshed and raring to go at a course he's won on before, Casey could be the form runner to keep an eye this week and I have to get on board.

I was very keen on Branden Grace last week in Dallas and I'm very keen again this week at a price that I'm surprised is holding firm all week @ 18.00. The South African was 3rd last week when finishing strongly at Trinity Forest GC and is a welcome addition to the field here at a course that he has form on from the past, with returns of 9-11-61-24-5 in his previous visits. His final round 73 here last year saw him finish 9th but that final round was one of the  highest scores of the leading TOP-20, but Grace is a much better player this time round and playing alongside compatriot Dylan Frittelli for the opening two rounds with afternoon/morning slots is seen as a positive. I don't envisage Grace being as low as 33 in the OWGR for much longer and its time to get him onside.

Pablo Larrazabal has 3 TOP-10s from his 9 strokeplay starts this season and is under the radar this week. 3 TOP-12 finishes here the past 5 years is encouraging and he can improve on recent finishes of 27-mc-21-4.

Aaron Rai may not have the required course from to weigh in on too much but there's no denying his recent form of 20-52-12-9 and I'm going to chance him here in the TOP-20 market @6.00 as English players have tended to perform well at this "flagship" event.

Mike Lorenzo-Vera was beaten in a playoff for the Sicilian Open last time out, thus providing this blog unfortunately with its 10th playoff defeat in 14. The Frenchman is worth considering for a TOP-20 spot on the back of that near-miss despite missing the cut the past two years here as too is George Coetzee who also missed the cut on his last two visits here but that may have helped his price this week. Big George has been in decent form of late, having won on his own course in Pretoria and followed that up in Madrid when finishing 4th behind local favourite Jon Rahm. He started well last time out in Swaziland before fading but 4 TOP-10s on the Europeantour this season from 9 starts is encouraging and he plays alongside two compatriots for the opening rounds which should provide enough incentive to score well but I'll stick with a final lineup as per below.

My Staking Plan (10 pts)

0.50 pts WIN R.Fisher @ 65.00
1.00 pts E/W R. Fisher @ 51.00 (7 places)
2.50 pts WIN P.Casey @ 16.00
2.25 pts WIN B.Grace @ 18.00
2.75 pts TOP20 A.Rai @ 6.00

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Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Selections - The Players Championship and The Rocco Forte Open 2018

Pressed for time again this week, but having provided shortlists for both The Players Championship at Sawgrass and the Rocco Forte Sicilian Open already this week, I wanted to get my selections for the P&L tracking finalized here before tee-time!

Both shortlists contain 15 players from which I deemed there be 10 of value in Florida with 8 in Sicily.

I'm backing all to win only this week as per below for a total outlay of 17.65 pts

Rocco Forte Sicilian Open (6.45 pts)

StakePlayerOddsTotal Cost of BetTerms
1.65Thorbjorn OLESEN20.001.65WIN
1.15Eddie PEPPERELL27.001.15WIN
1.10Andrea PAVAN28.001.10WIN
0.75Mike LORENZO-VERA41.000.75WIN
0.75Christiaan BEZUIDENHOUT41.000.75WIN
0.45Lorenzo GAGLI72.000.45WIN
0.35Matthew SOUTHGATE81.000.35WIN
0.25Alexander KNAPPE130.000.25WIN

The Players Championship (11.20 pts)

StakePlayerOddsTotal Cost of BetTerms
2.20Jason Day172.20WIN
2.20Rickie Fowler172.20WIN
1.15Patrick Reed311.15WIN
1.55Henrik Stenson231.55WIN
1.25Sergio Garcia291.25WIN
0.90Francesco Molinari41.000.90WIN
0.70Zach Johnson51.000.70WIN
0.60Daniel Berger61.000.60WIN
0.35Nick Watney101.000.35WIN
0.30Martin Kaymer126.000.30WIN