Written by Matt Cee for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!
The Arnold Palmer Invitational | 17 March - 20 March | Bay Hill Country Club
This week the PGA Tour remains in Florida, and this time around we have the historic Arnold Palmer Invitational to look forward to. Traditionally this has been a hotly contested affair and with some of the best golfers in the world competing and keeping in mind that the Masters is just around the corner, this should be one to watch.
Over the years, we've seen some of the biggest names in the game win here and whilst the longer hitters have done well on this par 72 7,419 yard layout, those who are shorter off the tee have done just as well. With that in mind, I’ll be ignoring driving distance and rather focus on accuracy, which will be vital if the field are going to keep out of the water and abundant bunkers. When the wind gets up this could prove even more tricky so don’t forget to keep in mind that those who can control the ball in the wind may be better off than those who struggle to do so. Last year the greens were difficult to read but apparently some serious renovations have been done, so putting shouldn’t prove to be much of an issue.
Overall, the winner here will need to be able to keep a cool head under pressure when he has the best in the game hot on his tail come Sunday. Let’s see if we can find out who that player will be.
To Win Outright
Rory McIlroy: 6/1 | Adam Scott: 8/1 | Henrik Stenson: 12/1 |Jason Day: 14/1 | Justin Rose: 16/1
Henrik Stenson (12/1 Win & 26/10 Place)
Henrik Stenson will arrive here with fond memories of his 2nd place finish last year, and he should be confident that his time around he can go one better and walk away the winner. He always seems to enjoy playing on this layout and also looks to have found a bit of form lately. Last year he struggled a bit on the greens and that was his undoing but this time, around the greens should be in far better shape so there is little standing in Stenson’s way. Each way is the bet for me.
Paul Casey (50/1 Win & 11/1 a place)
Paul Casey may have a bit of a tough time against a field of this calibre but he has a lot going for him this week and can’t be ignored. He isn’t the biggest hitter around but as mentioned previously, that’s not the end of the world as those who are accurate off the tee have traditionally done as well as the bombers. Casey is known for his ability to keep the ball on the fairway and in play and once on the green he can be deadly with his putter. If everything clicks there’s no reason he won’t finish near the top, each way is the bet for me.
Justin Rose (16/1 Win & 7/2 Place)
Backing Justin Rose this week is a huge risk because although he has done well in this event, he only has two top 5’s to his name in the last 4 years; he’s also managed to miss two cuts in his last five starts. Based on that, you can't be sure whether you’re in for a place payout or an early exit, but at this price, that’s a risk I’m willing to take. A 6th last time out proves he’s in decent form at the moment so each way is the bet for me.
Graeme McDowell (60/1 Win & 13/1 Place)
Gmac is one of those players who thoroughly enjoys this layout and in his last four starts here he has managed to finish inside the Top 10 twice, an accomplishment which can’t be ignored when you consider the calibre of golfer that generally participates here. He is known for his accuracy off the tee and with his irons so he should be able to avoid the bunkers and water and once on the green he shouldn’t have any issues with his putter. Last week he seemed out of sorts, let’s hope things change this time out. Each way is the bet for me.
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