BRANDT SNEDEKER gave Ace his first win of the year last week – a nice 36pts profit for anyone who did the advised 2pts at 18-1.
It was a miraculous win really with the American out to 40-1 inplay before storms hit the Farmers Insurance Open to see all the leaders go backwards. In the end Snedeker won without hitting a shot as he set the clubhouse target on Sunday and watched as the leaders went back out on the Monday and again went backwards.
Ace said: “It’s good to get off the mark even if the win came out of the blue. Sneds was tied second after his final round when the tournament was suspended and I didn’t expect him to finish anywhere near the top.
“I’m off and running snd here’s hoping for another fruitful week.vAfter the rain and winds at Torrey Pines last week the weather forecast for Scottsdale is dry and winds won’t be that strong.
“In his last four outings Kevin Kisner has four top-10 finishes, including a win and a runners-up spot. I tipped him when he won the RSM Classic and I think he can pull it off again in Scottsdale.
“With a driving accuracy of 72.94% (5th), GIR of 74.77% (34th) and putting average of 1.656 (4th) he’s not top of the FedEx rankings for nothing.
“With two seconds and two thirds from six outings this season Kevin Na has had a solid beginning to the season. He’s not won since the Shriners in 2011 although he has gone close this season when losing in a play-off at the Frys and finishing second in the Shriners in November. Driving accuracy of 64.58% (56%), GIR of 75% (24th) and putting average of 1.685 (10th) should put him in near the top of the leaderboard.
“After missing the cut at the Shriners Brooks Koepka came back strongly with a seventh and T3rd in his next two tournaments. I’ve backed him for all the Majors this year but he won the Phoenix Open last year and comes back to make his first career defence.
“His driving accuracy is 54.86% (178th) which is not great but GIR of 75% (24th) and putting average of 1.69 (17th) should help him here. In his final round last year he hit a tournament low of 63 and wouldn’t be surprised if he shoots low again this year.
“The final tournament in the Desert Swing is in Dubai for the Omega Dubai Desert Classic where Rory McIlroy returns to defend his title.
“With four top fives and a top 10 from his last six European outings Byeong-hun An is certainly worth looking at. He won his first tournament on the European Tour at the BMW PGA Championship last year and he will lift another title soon. His driving accuracy is only 50%, GIR 70.83% and average ppr of 28.25 but when he gets going he’s hard to beat. Well worth a bet here.
“The last time Andy Sullivan was in Dubai in November he had four great rounds of 66 66 68 68 to finish second in the DP World Tour Championship behind this week’s defending champion Rory McIlroy. Since that result Sullivan has had a mediocre three tournaments with only one top-20 finish.
“Long hitters, not necessarily accurate, could be the key here and the Englishman is certainly long (296.4 average yards) and with GIR of 68.3% and putts per round of 28.7 he could be challenging on Sunday.
“Belgian Joost Luiten has had a good Desert Swing and I expect him to continue that form. With a T5 and T13 finish in Abu Dhabi and Qatar he had seven steady rounds with only one over par. He’s another long hitter (296.3 yards) and accuracy of 62.5%. He is 21st in GIR (75%) but putts per round (29.6) will have to improve.