Steve Rawlings provides an in-depth preview of this week’s PGA Tour event at Torrey Pines – which starts on Wednesday – and explains why putting will be key…
Steve says: “If you’re betting in-running, the 18th is the toughest hole on the North Course (averaged 4.37 last year) but holes two, three and four are tough. Now known as The Undertow, that three-hole stretch averaged 0.7 strokes over-par in 2020 but it wasn’t quite so tricky last year, averaging just 0.19 over-par…
“It took California’s Xander Schauffele quite some time to show something at Torrey Pines as a pro. His first five visits produced figures reading MC-MC-MC-25-MC which was simply bizarre for the San Diego born superstar but things changed in this event last year after a slow start.
“Schauffele sat 48th after round one and 40th at halfway before he shot 68-69 over the weekend to finish tied for second behind Reed – ranking second for Scrambling – and he contended strongly here at the US Open in June before going on to finish seventh.
“We haven’t seen the Olympic champion since his steady 12th at the Sentry Tournament of Champions three weeks ago and he looks nicely primed.”
Steve’s bet: Back Xander Schauffele @ 23.022/1
Dave Tindall has three-each way tips for the action at Torrey Pines starting with an American who has previously performed well here.
Dave says: “Repeat winners are a theme in this event. Tiger Woods won an amazing seven times and also threw in a US Open on one leg for his eighth Torrey triumph. In more recent times, Brandt Snedeker and Jason Day have become two-time champions.
“Marc Leishman, the victor in 2020, had previously twice finished runner-up so Torrey Pines rates extremely highly in terms of past course form being an excellent pointer.
“With that in mind, my first pick is Tony Finau at 25/1.
“The man from Utah is a standing dish at Torrey. He first rocked up here in 2015, posting tied 25th, and it remains his worst finish at the Farmers!
“After tied 18th in 2016 he landed the each-way cash in four of the next five years with a run of 4-6-13-6-2.
“The only blemish is a missed cut at the US Open in 2021 but form in that June event in much firmer and faster conditions and this one doesn’t correlate very well at all unless you’re called Tiger Woods or Jon Rahm.”
Dave’s bet: Back Tony Finau each-way @ 26.025/1
With Steve taking a break from his quest to land a winner at monster odds this week Paul Krishnamurty returns to the 100 winner column and recommends three to back…
Paul says: “Christian Bezuidenhout has done fairly well over here so far, making 17 cuts out of 21. I think we’ll see him at his best on tough courses and his best result came on one – Bay Hill, where he was seventh in last year’s Arnold Palmer Invitational. But the most notable result for me was 31st in last year’s US Open at this course, in what was obviously a stronger field.
“Torrey Pines generally takes some learning so hopefully he’ll improve this time. It really should suit. Scrambling is really important here. Last year’s top-six finishers included four of the top-eight in that discipline. He ranks 11th among this field for scrambling over the past year and also 11th for putting average.”
Paul’s bet: Back Christiaan Bezuidenhout 1u @ 140.0139/1
Place order to lay 10u @ 10.09/1
Andy Swales provides the course info at Torrey Pines, the players’ form stats and picks four to watch…
Andy says: “Torrey Pines, situated around 16 miles north of downtown San Diego, is one of golf’s most iconic locations. It’s certainly a venue that requires golfers to battle and survive the often severe weather conditions, that usually blow in from the Pacific…
“The Farmers Insurance Open is an event where the Driving Accuracy percentages are generally low. In fact, of the 29 venues which qualified for a ranking in the table below, none had an overall tournament percentage (52.43%) as low as Torrey Pines…
“Will Zalatoris is one to watch. The big-hitting 25-year-old should have the perfect game to perform well over the South Course. He tied-seventh 12 months ago.”
Andy’s Player To Watch: Will Zalatoris @ 38.037/1
Steve previews this week’s DP World Tour event in Dubai and reveals which players he fancies in the betting…
Steve says: “Pre-tournament Rory McIlroy has led or co-led after the opening round in four of his last eight visits and he’ll make for a great back-to-lay vehicle.
“Looking a bit further down the list, I quite like South Africa’s Justin Harding who ticks a number of correlating form boxes. He won the Qatar Masters at Doha on the last occasion the tournament was played there in 2019 and he traded at long odds-on at the South African Open in December when he led by four with a round to go at the Gary Player Country Club before finishing a disappointing sixth.
“Harding has course form figures here reading 7-37-27 but that doesn’t really tell the whole story. He sat third and just two off the lead 12 months ago before finishing 27th and he might prove to be a lively outsider after a decent effort in Abu Dhabi last week.”
Steve’s bet: Back Justin Harding @ 160.00159/1
Matt Cooper has three selections for Dubai this week with the Betfair Sportsbook paying eight places…
Matt says: “Nicolai Hojgaard, is the first pick this week. A winner on the third tier Nordic Golf League when still an amateur 17-year-old, he was the first of the Hojgaards to contend on the first tier when second at the 2019 KLM Open, but then had to take a back seat as brother Rasmus beat him to the winner’s circle…
“A pair of top 20s in the immediate aftermath of the breakthrough were lucrative and strong, as were a near-miss tied second at the Portugal Masters and tied fourth in the DP World Tour Championship.
“All of that form is tempting enough, especially given he is a very fine, and long, driver of the ball, a factor that is often beneficial on the Majlis Course at the Emirates GC. But both those latter two results are also good indicators, especially the runner-up finish at Dom Pedro.”
Matt’s bet: Back Nicolai Hojgaard each-way @ 67.066/1
Andy Swales provides the course info for the Emirates Golf Club, the players’ form stats and picks four to watch…
Andy says: “Opened in 1988, the Majlis Course at Emirates is largely flat and laid out a few miles south of Dubai City centre.
“Designed by American architect Karl Litten, it was the first grass course to be opened in the Middle East. Water comes into play on eight holes, while the greens are reasonably tame and uncomplicated.
“The game’s longer hitters have generally thrived in the dry desert conditions at Emirates, although the stats illustrate that accuracy remains a vital ingredient from tee-to-green…
“Tyrrell Hatton, the world No 22, hasn’t won since January of last year, since when his ranking has dropped 17 spots. However, he tied-6th last week at Yas Links and has twice stood on the podium at Emirates.”
Andy’s Player To Watch: Tyrrell Hatton @ 19.5