Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: PGA Tour: Mayakoba Golf Classic Preview

PGA Tour: Mayakoba Golf Classic Preview

PGA Tour: Mayakoba Golf Classic Preview

Damien Kayat previews the PGA Tour's Mayakoba Classic taking place El Camaleon Golf Club in Mexico.

Image Copyright - Steve Haag Sports

Two women looking excitedly at cellphone

The Mayakoba Golf Classic made history in 2007, becoming the first US PGA Tour event hosted outside the United States or Canada. But it will forever be remembered as the weekend when Matt Kuchar forgot his wallet at home (he was roundly ridiculed for shorting a local caddy after his 2018 win). The tournament is hosted in Mexico and this will be the 14th renewal of the event. This event used to be an alternate event to the WGC Match Play Championship (formerly known as the OHL Classic). Since its move to a November slot it has gone from strength to strength. A decent field lines up for what is set to be the final PGA Tour event of 2020. 

Once again, this event will take place at the picturesque El Camaleon Golf Club. Designed by Greg Norman and opened in 2004, El Camaleon is an enticing hybrid that combines jungle, mangrove and oceanfront. It is a wind-affected coastal track with smaller than-average Sea Isle Paspalum greens. The three inaugural winners of this event tell you everything you need to know about El Camaleon. Fred Funk, Brian Gay and Mark Wilson indicate that this will favour the artists over the protein-shake guys. Finding the green in regulation is far more crucial to what you do from the tee. Corollary events such as the Bermuda Championship and Corales Puntecana can be useful in finding potential champions. 

It was fairly unfortunate that World Number One and recent Masters Champion Dustin Johnson had to pull out over the weekend. Still, the likes of Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka make this a captivating event that will be well worth the watch. Local hero Abraham Ancer had an excellent recent Masters and will be rueing the lack of fans at his home event. Daniel Berger has enjoyed an excellent season while Rickie Fowler has fairly trudged along. Tony Finau continues to mesmerize with his innate ability to not win tournaments. Also look out for short-course specialists such as Graeme McDowell and Russell Knox. Defending champion Brendon Todd also returns for the final event of a chaotic PGA year. 

Past Winners
2019: Brendon Todd (-20)
2018: Matt Kuchar (-22)
2017: Patton Kizzire (-19)
2016: Pat Perez (-21)
2015: Graeme McDowell (-18)

To Win Outright:
Justin Thomas 13/2 | Brooks Koepka 10/1 | Harris English 16/1 | Tony Finau 18/1 | Daniel Berger 20/1

Value Bets

Patton Kizzire: To Win 66/1 | To Place 14/1
This has been something of an autumn of underdogs, with the likes of Robert Streb, Martin Laird and Hudson Swafford tasting success. With that as inspiration, I’m opting for a name very much outside of the spotlight. Firstly, Kizzire won this title three years ago. That vibes well with the Laird and Streb victories (both of those players won at the sites of previous victories). He is coming here off the back of consecutive finishes of 10th and 11th, his highest pair of consecutive results since that last victory. He seems to be moving in the right direction and obviously loves this golf course. 

Adam Long: To Win 80/1 | To Place 17/1
Long will be eager to avenge his heart-breaking defeat here last year: he ultimately lost to Brendon Todd by one stroke. Long has also enjoyed a fairly good start to the season, highlighted by a tie for 13th at the US Open. Three top 20 finishes in his last seven events bode well, especially considering that this field is slightly lacking in true superstar names. He has gained in strokes in all areas of his games over his recent starts- putting aside. But I’m backing on him drawing on his positive memories from last year. 

The Man to Beat: Russell Henley: To Win 25/1 | To Place 11/2
Henley has visited El Camaleon twice without much success. His recent form has been extremely solid. He finished in a tie for 4th at the Zozo Championship and followed that with back-to-back top 30 finishes at the Houston Open and RSM Classic. The real reason I have opted for the reliable Henley is his statistical suitability for the course. He currently sits 10th on tour for both GIR and Driving Accuracy. He also sits 6th in scoring average. Additionally, any errant wind shouldn’t deter a former winner of both the Sony Open and Honda Classic. 

Written by Damien Kayat. 

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