The PGA Tour continues this week with The Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale, Arizona.
This event will be missing some big names who have decided to participate on The European Tour this week but the 132 field will still be a strong one with Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy and Xander Schauffele to name but a few, all competing for the $7.3million purse with a cool $1.314million to the winner.
This par 71 desert course will see Webb Simpson return to defend the title he won last year defeating Tony Finau at the first extra hole in a playoff.
The weather is forecast to be sunny with gentle breezes for all four days with temperatures ranging between a cool 8C in the mornings to much hotter conditions 21C in the afternoons.
The key attribute this week will be power and will suit an aggressive big hitter around this fairly straightforward layout.
Previous course winners taking part include Webb Simpson, Rickie Fowler, Hideki Matsuyama and Brooks Koepka.
With Dustin Johnson and Bryson De Chambeau absent due to European Tour commitments in the Middle East this week, I feel this opens the door for my first selection Jon Rahm 8/1 each-way at Betfair.
With both Justin Thomas and Rory McIlroy having also made trips to the Gulf recently, I feel Rahm who has remained in the States adjusting to his new Callaway clubs has a massive advantage.
He just seems to be striking the ball well and looks like a solid investment. The Spaniard who finished 7th at The Farmers Insurance and also 7th at The Sentry on the previous week, looks to have started the season in fine fettle.
He is also a local to these parts and currently resides here at Scottsdale which can only further enhance his chances.
He knows this course like the back of his hand and previous form figures read 5th-16th-11th-10th-9th.
Three top 10 finishes and all in the Top 20 suggest Rahm will be looking forward to this and will be a leading contender come Sunday evening.
For my next pick I’m going to look for some value and therefore include Will Zalatoris 45/1 each-way at bet365.
Last week the young American finished T7th at The Farmers Insurance playing some sublime golf and finishing with an impressive eagle on the final hole.
He is definitely not far away from his maiden title and will be a very popular winner on the PGA Tour when it happens.
Zalatoris will be much more suited to conditions here at Scottsdale rather than Torrey Pines. He finished 5th in The Nevada Desert at TPC Summerlin, a course similar to here.
At only 24-years old I feel the young talented Zalatoris is going to breakthrough on The PGA Tour in impressive style and it could all begin here this week at a very handsome price.
For my next suggestion I’m going to pick Sungjae Im at 40/1 each-way with Betfair.
A hot putter is certainly going to help matters on this straightforward layout and Im was ranked 2nd on putting strokes at the recent American Express.
The young 22 year old South Korean was in with every chance last week at Torrey Pines where he was on top of the leaderboard at the halfway stage. He then got to within one shot of Patrick Reed on the final round only to succumb to untimely bogeys on the 10th and 11th then a double bogey on the 12th that certainly ruled out any chance altogether.
If Sungjae can eradicate these errors then he can certainly go on to winning ways again soon.
He had a good season last year, winning The Genesis Championship and The Honda Classic while finishing 2nd at The Masters and also runner up at Sanderson Farms. If he can just find a little more consistency then this young golfer could easily be in amongst the leading contenders yet again on Sunday.
Jon Rahm vs Justin Thomas
For my final selection I’m going to choose a 72 hole match bet, Jon Rahm to beat Justin Thomas 10/11 Nap at Bet365