Welcome back to Golf News Net's weekly fantasy golf picks. Each week of the European Tour season, we'll present our top picks for that week's tournament and make recommendations for DraftKings' one-week fantasy leagues.
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The European Tour finally gets going again with the D+D Real Czech Masters. The Tour has been co-sanctioning majors and the Olympics in the last month or so, but we're finally back with Tour-specific events in Prague. It's the third year for this event.
Each week, we'll provide our picks and analysis, with our GNN Plus subscribers getting access to our searchable database of PGA Tour results from 2011-present, our top-15 finish chart and season-long trends on DraftKings valuations. They'll be available at your disposal as part of a growing set of tools to help in your research.
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Here are our top 10 picks:
1. Thomas Pieters - Pieters is the defending champion in this event, and he had a showing to be proud of in Rio. He's getting closer to becoming an elite player.
2. Andy Sullivan - Sullivan has been on a mini-tear of late, playing well in both the French and Scottish Open, with top-12s in both.
3. Lee Westwood - Westwood is making a late charge in the year to perhaps pick up some key Ryder Cup points. He should be on the team.
4. Matt Fitzpatrick - The Nordea Masters winner did well in the Paul Lawrie Match Play, getting to the Round of 16 before losing. A modest showing in the PGA Championship on a course too long for him.
5. Jamie Donaldson - Donaldson won the first year of this event in 2014. However, he's been on a slide since the middle of the year. Tough to pick at a high salary.
6. Richard Sterne - Sterne has been on a great run since May, with three top-13 finishes in five starts. Well worth a look this week.
7. Matthew Southgate - Great results in three of the Englishman's last four starts, including a spectacular T-12 at the Open Championship.
8. Nino Bertasio - The Olympian has been strong on the European Tour since a T-5 in Morocco. Only missed cut in his last seven events was at the French Open.
9. Robert Dinwiddie - Dinwiddie has cashed in six of his last seven European Tour events, although he was busted out in the first round of the Paul Lawrie.
10. Tommy Fleetwood - This is a feel play above all else. His summer has been erratic at best.
My DraftKings team for this week:
1. Richard Sterne - $9,800
2. Tommy Fleetwood - $8,600
3. Robert Dinwiddie - $8,200
4. Nino Bertasio - $8,000
5. Chris Paisley - $7,700
6. Craig Lee - $7,400
We start by looking at the recent past, back at players who have finished inside the top 15 in the last five European Tour events. Here are the players in this week's field with the most top-15 finishes in the last five European Tour events:
- Andy Sullivan - 2 - T-5 French Open, T-6 Scottish Open
- Chris Paisley - 2 - T-10 Lyoness Open, T-13 Scottish Open
- Lee Westwood - 2 - T-8 Nordea Masters, T-11 French Open
- Richard Sterne - 2 - T-11 French Open, T-13 Scottish Open
- Robert Dinwiddie - 2 - T-10 Lyoness Open, T-9 BMW International Open
- Tjaart Van der Walt - 2 - T-10 Nordea Masters, T-10 Lyoness Open
We're also interested in the players in the field that have finished in the top 15 at the Czech Masters multiple times in its first two years:
Ideally, we want to find players who are both playing well now and have a history of playing well at this championship. However, since it's so young, we don't have that this week.
DraftKings salaries change from week to week, depending on field strength and size, as well a player's recent record and their history on a course. It's in looking at how a salary changes over time that we might get some clues as to players that could be a little overrated or underrated.
We're looking here at the players who are salaried at $1,500 or more than their season average:
- Anders Hansen
- Robert Karlsson
- Matthew Fitzpatrick
- David Howell
- Mark Foster
- Callum Shinkwin
- Bradley Dredge
- Craig Lee
- Graeme Storm
- Tommy Fleetwood
- Maximilian Kieffer
- Jamie Donaldson
- Pelle Edberg
- Chris Paisley
- Robert Dinwiddie
- Richard Sterne
- Matthew Southgate
- Andy Sullivan
- Thomas Pieters
Here are players who have multiple top 15s in the last five European Tour (specific) events who are playing below their average salary this week.
Lee Westwood - $667 ABOVE
Tjaart Van der Walt - $150 BELOW