After a truly breathtaking Sunday in St. Louis, it's now off to Greensboro for the Wyndham Championship. The field this week probably won't help with your withdrawal symptoms after last week's final round, but there are a few big names that have made the trip to Sedgefield Country Club this week. Hideki Matsuyama, Henrik Stenson, Webb Simpson and Sergio Garcia are the big names in action this week trying to get their hands on the trophy. It's also the final opportunity for players to break into the top 125 of the FedEx Cup standings, and earn their place in the opening event of the playoffs.
Last year, Henrik Stenson captured the title after posting a total of 22 under par to defeat Ollie Schniederjans by one stroke.
Sedgefield Country Club is a golf course that is going to give up a plethora of birdies this week. The course measures just over 7,100 yards and with rough that is more than playable, the course has little to no defense. It's worth remembering that Henrik Stenson won here last year without hitting driver once, so longer hitters will not have a distinct advantage this week. Wedge play is going to be vitally important this week, as will putting, as players are going to have plenty of opportunities to put red numbers on their scorecard.
It's been a quiet year for Brandt Snedeker, but Sedgefield is a golf course that always seems to bring out the best in the American. Snedeker has four top-10 finishes at Sedgefield, and on his last appearance here in Greensboro he finished T-3. Snedeker's ability to make more than his share of putts is one of the main reasons I like his chances here this week. It took some time for him to get back to his best with the flat stick following his return from injury, but right now Snedeker is on fire on the greens. Over his previous 12 rounds, Snedeker is ranked fifth in this week's field for strokes gained putting, having gained an impressive 11.5 strokes over the field in this department.
The American has also shown signs as of late that he is ready to mount a challenge for a title recently. In his last seven outings, Snedeker has finished in the top 10 on three occasions. With Ryder Cup captain's picks still to play for also, Snedeker has plenty of motivation to perform well this week. On a golf course that he thrives on, combined with a red-hot putter, Brandt Snedeker leads off my picks this week.
Another man who has yet to hit the heights that many expected of him in 2018 is Daniel Berger. The Floridian who is looking for his third PGA Tour title in as many years has yet to truly put himself into contention this year, but there were signs last week in St. Louis that he may just be about to do so. At the PGA Championship, Berger began poorly with a round of 73, however, after that he produced some excellent golf. Berger shot three consecutive rounds in the 60's, two of which were 66 or better.
The most promising aspect of his performance last week came with his irons. Berger lead the field for strokes gained approaching the green last week, gaining 8.5 strokes over the field. The American has his iron play dialled in right now, and he should be licking his chops at the opportunities that Sedgefield is going to provide him to continue his deadly approach play. At 33/1, in a weakened field, Berger looks good value to go well in Greensboro this week.
My final outright pick this week is Billy Horschel. The American has been playing some excellent golf as of late, with his runner-up finish at the Barbasol being his best finish of the year. Last week, Horschel finished T35 at the PGA Championship, but just like Berger, he showed signs that better results are about to come. Last week, Horschel gained 6.5 strokes over the field for his approach play, and the American also lead the field in proximity to the hole.
Over his previous 12 rounds, Horschel sits fifth in this week's field for ball striking and he now arrives at a golf course that he has performed excellently on in the past. Horschel has made four of his last five cuts in Greensboro, with his best finish coming in 2016 when he finished T5. The 40/1 odds look too big a price for a player of Horschel's ability in this field, and he completes my outright lineup for the week.
It's not easy to make an argument for a man whose best finish since April is a T63. However, at 12/1 it seems worth taking a small shot on the mercurial Sean O'Hair this week. O'Hair is struggling mostly with his putting as of late, and that's an area which is often subject to fluctuation. The Texan finished runner-up at the Valero Texas Open and recorded a T12 finish at Valspar earlier this year when showing no form at all entering the events. At 12/1 this week to claim a top-20 finish, it's worth taking a small punt on a very capable player such as O'Hair producing another good performance from seemingly nowhere.
72 Hole Match Bets
Brendan Steele is struggling mightily at the moment, and this week looks to be a great opportunity to take the American on in a match bet. In his last five outings, Steele's best finish is a T47 and he has missed two of his last four cuts. Chris Kirk, on the other hand, is playing some excellent golf as of late. Kirk has made his last ten cuts on Tour, and over his previous 24 rounds, Kirk ranks fourth in this week's field for strokes gained approaching the green. Kirk is ranked 20th in strokes gained total over the same period, compared to Steele who ranks 96th, and at 5/6 he looks a great option in this market this week.
2018 Wyndham Championship recommended bets
- Outright Winner (All Each Way): Brandt Snedeker 25/1 (7 places, Coral), Daniel Berger 33/1 (8 places, Sky Bet), Billy Horschel 40/1 (7 places, Coral)
- Top 20: Sean O’Hair 12/1 (Ladbrokes)
- 72 Hole Match Bets: Chris Kirk over Brendan Steele 5/6 (SkyBet)