Written by Matt Cee for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!
The WGC Cadillac Open | 03 March - 06 March | Blue Monster at Doral
The Florida swing is well underway and this week the WGC Cadillac tees off at the Blue Monster at Doral - one of the more difficult courses that will be played this year. The course has hosted this event since 2007 and over the years, it has undergone significant changes, the most recent of which was in 2013.
The new layout is proving to be even more difficult than the previous design and the course now measures a gigantic 7,600 yards, so the first stat to keep an eye on is driving distance. Previously the bunkers were placed strategically and the short hitters were at a distinct disadvantage. And although they have been moved, and those lacking distance off the tee will have it a bit easier, the ability to bomb it down the fairway will go a long way in making those rare birdies. Another stat to keep an eye out for is the ability to play out the sand. Bunkers litter the course and more often than not prove challenging to get out of. Being able to get up and down when in the bunker will be crucial for anyone who will win here.
This tournament has attracted one of the strongest fields we've seen this year and promises to be hotly contested, let’s see if we can find ourselves a winner.
To Win Outright
Rory McIlroy: 7/1 | Jordan Spieth: 8/1 | Jason Day: 12/1
Bubba Watson (14/1 a win & 31/10 a place)
This week Watson will arrive at Doral in great form and confident that he has what it takes to win on a course he has done well on in the past. A 2nd place finish in 2014 was followed up by a 3rd last year and if we know one thing, it’s that the big hitters have a distinct advantage on this layout. Sure, the bunkers have been repositioned and the shorter hitters should have it a bit easier this year but be that as it may, Watson could take some beating if he comes out and plays anything like he has been over the past few weeks. I’ll be backing Watson each way this week, you should too.
Justin Rose (25/1 a win & 11/2 a place)
Justin Rose has been keeping a low profile lately but he always steps up to the plate when the going gets tough and based on the price available it would appear that the bookies know something that we don’t. We all know that the big hitters are the ones to keep an eye on this week and whilst Rose may not hit it as long as the likes of Johnson and Watson, he’s certainly no slouch off the tee. If he shows up he’ll finish near the top. Each way on Rose is the bet for me.
Henrik Stenson (28/1 a win & 62/10 a place)
Henrik Stenson played some great golf during the Desert Swing and although this week he will be playing against far stiffer competition than he faced there, he is still one to keep an eye on here. He has the ability to hit the ball far off the tee but his main strength is off the fairway, where he has his long irons and 3 wood completely under control. That will allow him to hit more greens in regulation than most and will hopefully give him the advantage he needs to walk away the winner here. Each way is the bet for me.
Louis Oosthuizen (40/1 a win & 88/10 a place)
Last week in Perth Louis Oosthuizen didn’t give an inch on his way to what turned out to be an easy win and he’ll arrive at Doral confident and ready to get his Masters preparation underway. Although he has been relatively quiet prior to his win last week he has been playing consistently and always seems to enjoy these longer more difficult layouts. Sure, this field is far stronger than the one he faced last week, but he’s fared well here in the past and can't be ignored at this price.
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