Yet again another disappointing Sunday as Scotland came up shy in their semi-finals against Australia and 200/1 shot Zac Blair had a nightmare front 9 after starting his final round T8th and 3 shots back.
Scotland played better golf than anyone en route to the semis but they were quite flat against the Aussies. Despite that they had more than enough chances to beat Scott Hend and Sam Brazel as they were playing even worse than the Scots. But ultimately a bit of rust about Warren’s game and Ramsay’s putter going cold meant they lost it at the 6th and final hole.
Blair would have had his work cut out to win the event but it’s a shame that he didn’t manage to contend at all on the Sunday even after an opening birdie. It is refreshing to see such a positive Twitter feed from Blair at a time when the likes of Grayson Murray are making all the social media headlines for the wrong reasons. The preparation Blair put into the week helped him to play well and if he continues in that vein then we may well see him on more leaderboards throughout the year.
Total 2017 pts advised = 197pts
Total 2017 pts returned = 130.97pts
ROI = -33.5%
The Players Championship
I’ve done a preview again for Matchbook this week so please see that below. I’m not going to bother repeating too much so just the picks and the staking plan.
I like Justin Thomas. Jon Rahm, Russell Henley, Kevin Chappell and Matt Kuchar this week each way.
Also going to include Matt Kuchar as a Top 10 bet as he really seems to enjoy playing well but only finishing 6th-10th!
David Lingmerth looks over priced for a top 20 here given his fondness for Pete Dye courses. He finished 2nd on his debut at TPC Sawgrass and he has a 6th and a 3rd on Dye’s Valley course at Sawgrass. Lingmerth was also beaten in a play-off last February by Dufner at the CareerBuilder Challenge which is played on two different Pete Dye designs. The tougher it plays the more he will enjoy the test and with recent finishes of 14th and 18th a 3rd top 20 in a row looks more likely than the 8/1 suggests.
Open De Portugal
This looks as poor a betting heat as The Players looks a good one. A new course and a co-sanctioned event with the Challenge Tour gives us a very poor field. The course is Morgado Golf Course in the Algarve and from the little I can find it is said to be a links style course in a parkland setting. A google search of images would back that up and it looks a lot like Gleneagles which I always think of as the archetypical inland links course. With little to go on I have found two speculative punts.
Mark Foster won the Alfred Dunhill Links way back in 2003 and he lost in a play-off at Gleaneagles in 2011. He hasn’t done a great deal recently but this is the sort of tournament that is usually won by someone with a historical piece of class or a hungry young maiden. At 50/1 he looks worth a small interest.
Jens Fahbring probably couldn’t be considered young any more but he is still just finding his feet on the main Tour. He arrives in Portugal following two 13th place finishes and also managed 12th in Portugal in October in a far better field than this. He is a proven winner on the Challenge Tour with two wins, both at courses that are visually similar to Morgado. Also looks a fair price at 50/1.
Summary of Bets
Justin Thomas – 2pts ew @ 30/1
Jon Rahm – 2pts ew @ 22/1
Russell Henley – 0.5pt ew @ 80/1
Kevin Chappell – 0.5pt ew @ 50/1
Matt Kuchar – 0.5pt ew @ 60/1 & 2pts Top 10 @ 9/2
David Lingmerth – 1pt Top 20 @ 8/1
Open De Portugal
Mark Foster – 0.5pt ew @ 50/1
Jens Fahrbring – 0.5pt ew @ 50/1
Weekly pts advised = 16pts