While all of us have been waiting for May to arrive, Doc’s been waiting for us to arrive, and here he is with the results of this week’s Wells Fargo Championship.
Rory McIlroy tops the betting at 8/1 this week and loves Quail Hollow. Twice a winner on the track in 2010 and 2017, both times by a country mile, with four other top-10’s alongside. Winner of the Arnie, maybe a little disappointed with a T5 at The Masters, but undeniable favourite here. In the Win Only category, I like Rickie Fowler here at a generous 12/1. He is also a former winner here in 2012, was T5 at the 2017 PGA Championship and has the distance to handle the track.
Doc’s Top-5 Best Each-Way Bets
Hideki Matsuyama 22/1
It hasn’t been a good season so far by Hideki Matsuyama’s standards but he’s always on my shortlist for long tough tracks that require brain power (and so I’m giving him the nod over Paul Casey as first pick!). Case in point maybe is the fact that Hideki has improved his finish every time he’s visited the track from a T38 in 2014, to T20 in 2015, T11 in 2016 and T5 at the 2017 PGA Championship. Has shot a course best of 62 here. T19 at The Masters last time out.
Louis Oosthuizen 33/1
Simmering through the early season with top-30’s at the Honda, WGC Mexico and Valspar, the South African again fronted up with a T12 at Augusta and scored a 3rd last week along with bestie Charl Schwartzel at the Zurich Classic. Louis has unfinished business here after a T2 in last year’s PGA Championship and will surely have the confidence to contend here on his own.
Chesson Hadley 50/1
Chesson is too good to ignore at 50/1 this week given a run of four consecutive top-20 finishes including a T7 at Harbour Town and T4 last week in team play. Missed the cut on his first visit to Quail Hollow in 2014 but improved to a T20 and T11 since and given his current form and confidence will be looking to improve further.
Webb Simpson 40/1
Regular readers will know I’m tipping Webb Simpson a lot this season and hitting him on the right week is the trouble. What is jumping out at me during my research are Webb’s stats which match the best across the board just now. From a T5 at The Honda, to a T8 at The Valspar and T5 again at the RBC Heritage, you have to think he’ll get over the line soon. And where better to do it than at home; Webb lives pretty much on the first tee at Quail Hollow. His odds are generous at 40/1, a function of a missed cut here in 2016 and being very critical, and suffering on, the setup for the PGA Championship last year. Has a best of T2 in 2015 and my fiver each way says he’ll do well this year.
Kevin Kisner 45/1
Sometimes having a brutally long course forces the longer players to step up and slam it and “unforced errors” ruin them. If you agree with that philosophy, Kevin Kisner is available at a nice safe plodding 45/1 in the betting. Seems to have found something at Augusta (T28) and improved to a T7 at the RBC Heritage. Showed more form with Scott Brown in team play at the Zurich Classic before slipping late on. An any man that can engineer a T7 finish, at Quail Hollow, playing at its toughest, and longest, in a Major, as Kisner did here last year, has to be respected.
Long Odds Glory Shot
Byeong Hun An 80/1
Ben An is available at 80/1 and might be worth a long odds glory shot this week. He’s enjoyed some good finishes already this year, T5 Honda, T14 Arnie, T7 RBC Heritage and played the PGA Championship here last year (T28).