SUNDAY was a great day when three of my four picks finished 1st, T2, T2 at the British Masters for a profit of 103pts and hopefully I can follow that up with another good weekend.
The Tour moves on to the Portugal Masters at Vilamoura and, believe it or not, the PGA Tour returns for a new season starting in California with the Fry’s.com.
Race to Dubai points are up for grabs in this week’s Portugal Masters and with two tournaments to go before the Final Series there will be a few players fighting to get into the top 110 or trying to keep their status.
Looking at his stats at the British Masters I’m going to give 6ft 6in Englishman Chris Wood another chance He didn’t do much wrong with four rounds under 70 (69 69 69 67), if you add his two 65s at St Andrews the week before that’s good scoring.
As I said last week he’s missed five cuts since winning the Lyoness Open but with a T4 at the Alfred Dunhill followed by last week’s T9 he looks to be back in the groove.
It’s taken me some time to finalise my other pick for the Portugal Masters but finally I’ve decided on Bernd Wiesberger. At the Dunhill Links he also looked back in form finishing a T4 with four solid rounds (70 68 69 64). His driving accuracy stats aren’t that great (53.9%) but makes up for that with his GIR stats (73.58%) and putts per round of 29.
Over at the Silverado Resort in Napa, California, GIR seems to be the important stat this weekend at the Frys.com. Hideki Matsuyama finished a T3 here last year in what was a good first half of season with eight top-10 finishes.
He dried up a bit in the middle of the year but managed to take part in the four FedEx Cup Playoffs, finishing T13, T25, T7 and T12. If we add in his half and two wins in the Presidents Cup I definitely think he can get a result here.
His driving accuracy is 65% (49th), GIR of 69% (21st) and strokes gained:tee-to-green 1.338 (8th) so all round looks in good nick.
Argentinian Emiliano Grillo did not have a bad season at all on the American circuit. He had two top-10 finishes from five on the PGATour and a win, second and ninth from four on the Web.com Tour (winning the Web.com Tour Championship in the process). The 23-year-old is my rookie to follow for 2016 and with stats of 64.4% in driving accuracy and GIR of 71.6% a place finish isn’t out of the question.
As a final pick I’m looking at the San Antonio Championship on the Champions Tour and can’t see past Jeff Maggert. The American is just 39 points behind Colin Montgomerie in the Schwab Cup and has won three times in the last eight outings.
Chris Wood 1pt ew (20-1, Ladbrokes, William Hill)
Bernd Wiesberger 2pts ew (12-1, Ladbrokes, William Hill)
Hideki Matsuyama 2pts ew (18-1, 888sport, Unibet)
Emiliano Grillo 1pt ew (50-1, BetVictor, bet365)
Jeff Maggert 2.5pts ew (16-1, Betfred)