The Zurich Classic Preview

Written by @Matt_Cee for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!

The Zurich Classic | Thursday 25 April - Sunday 28 April | TPC Louisiana

The Zurich Classic, formerly known as the New Orleans Open, tees off this week at TPC Louisiana. The course itself is a relatively new one, having been opened in 2004. Set in the Mississippi Delta, this 7,500 yard course is long but is fairly unique in that the ability to blast it off the tee is not really a huge advantage. Rather, accuracy will be key because the course includes over a hundred bunkers and there are water hazards on eight of the holes. Players will know to avoid those because the pesky local alligators don’t take to kindly to visitors. So who has the game to dominate this challenging course? Let’s have a look.

To Win Outright
Justin Rose 12/1
Keegan Bradley 16/1
Bubba Watson 16/1
Jason Dufner 16/1
Rickie Fowler 20/1

Jason Dufner (16/1 a win, 4/1 a place)
I’m not really surprised to see that Dufner is one of the top players in the betting this week because he comes into this with more course form than most of the players in the field. A 9th in 2009, 7th in 2010, 3rd in 2011 and 1st last year make him look a worthy bet this week. Clearly he loves the course and although his season has not been great so far this year, he managed a top 20 in the Masters. 16/1 is a great price. Get on.

Rory Sabbatini (60/1 a win, 15/1 a place)
In an ideal world, Rory Sabbatini would just fade into obscurity. However, it would appear that the villain of the South African golf fraternity just refuses to give up. Having gone missing for the first three months of this season, he has slowly started coming back to life and his steady improvement reached a peak at Hilton Head. Here he finished in the top 10 and if his progression is anything to go by, he should go one better this week. 60/1 looks a really good price.

Billy Horschel (33/1 a win, 83/10 a place)
At this price, bookies are obviously a bit nervous about laying the in-form Horschel and rightly so. Although he has little course form he has been the height of consistency over the past few weeks with top 3’s in Houston and Texas and a T9 at Hilton Head last week. With his accuracy off the tee he should be able to keep away from the bunkers and numerous water hazards. Although I doubt he will win, 83/10 a place looks juicy.

TOP BET: Ernie Els (45/1 a win, 11/1 a place)
Ernie Els is my top bet for this week based on value alone because in this field, I don’t think that he should be available at anything greater than 25/1. He played well last year and narrowly missed out in a playoff and if his performance in the Masters is anything to go by, he should be able to handle the course once again this year. With his ability to make more eagles than most, there’s a big chance that could work to his advantage on a course where traditionally the par 5’s have provided opportunities to shave shots off. Each way is a great bet on Els this week.

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