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Sony Open In Hawaii Tips & Predictions: Three picks against the field in Honolulu

Ryan Palmer features in our Sony Open In Hawaii tips and predictions.
Ryan Palmer features in our Sony Open In Hawaii tips and predictions.

The PGA Tour is back into full swing this week as the players head to Honolulu for the Sony Open In Hawaii, a long standing dish on the Tour schedule which gives us plenty of course form and a reasonable field including a major winner from last season who I like.

30 players have stayed in Hawaii following last week's Sentry Tournament of Champions which was won in the end by Harris English.

Of my three selections last week, Xander Schauffele would have returned a small each-way prize for finishing in a tie for fifth. I was happy to get the place in an event where the American never really got up with the pace.

After a slow first round -2, Dustin Johnson was always chasing, but I got excited momentarily when he hit seven birdies on his front nine on Sunday to get in contention. Albeit three drop shots on in the first four holes of the back nine ended his challenge whilst Hideki Matsuyama never got going, finishing with a lower score than just one player in the end.

Onto this week and its Webb Simpson who heads the betting at 12/1 with the majority of firms. William Hill have pushed him out to 14's tied at the top with my first pick Collin Morikawa, with explanation below.

It's pretty competitive at the top of the betting and it's a nice tournament to bet on given there's a heap of course form to go on.

English is a 16/1 chance to go back to back this week alongside Patrick Reed whilst Daniel Berger, who featured in my 'best of the rest' last week is around the 20/1 chance following a 10th place finish in Maui.

I've picked out three players in different price brackets this week that I hope will give us a run for our money.

Golf tips
Sony Open In Hawaii At A Glance
Sony Open In Hawaii
Thu
Tipped By
Collin Morikawa each-way (8 places)
  • T7 last week
  • Ranks well for GIR and shots gained around the green
  • Major winner in 2020 and course should suit
Odds correct as of 2021-01-11 18:50 Odds subject to change.

As I alluded to, Collin Morikawa is my first pick, fresh from a 7th place finish in the Tournament of Champions Last week.

The American was bang in contention following rounds of 69-65-65 before slumping to a level par 73 on Sunday and slip from 4th to 7th.

The course in Honolulu should suit Morikawa who isn't the longest but very accurate. The 23 year old winner of last year's USPGA Championship was dialled in on day one last week with a GIR of 94% and he also has the short game to fall back on if he does miss the green.

This season Morikawa ranks 10th in this week's field for greens in regulation whilst he's the 4th best in shots gained around the green.

His putting can be his achilles heel but I'm expecting the greens to play pretty slow this week which should help him and his 21st finish here last season is enough of a guide for me that he'll take to the course.

At 14/1 he's hovering around favouritism but I'm happy to have a play each-way with Paddy Power paying eight places.

Golf odds
Tipped By
Ryan Palmer each-way (8 places)
  • 4th last week
  • Winner here in 2010 and 4th in 2020
  • In the form of his life and looks a good price this week
Odds correct as of 2021-01-11 18:55 Odds subject to change.

Second up this week I like my namesake Ryan Palmer to go well again at a course where he's won and played well often.

Like Morikawa, Palmer played well last week in Maui finishing 4th, and although he only shot two under par on Sunday when finishing just two shots off the winning total, he'd lost complete momentum when double bogeying the 11th hole. What I liked though was that he birdied four of his last five holes which I'm hoping can carry over this week.

Palmer ranks 5th in the field this season for greens hit in regulation at 75% and he was dialling in numbers way higher than that last week.

Ranked 25 in the world, he's in the form of his life but I think the 44 year old is consistently under rated and represents some value here at 35/1.

He has three top tens at the course, included that win in 2010 and he finished fourth here 12 months ago.

Two top 5s in his last two starts on Tour, albeit a good few weeks between I'm hoping he'll go well again here.

Tipped By
Charles Howell III each-way (8 places)
  • Super consistent course form with seven top ten finishes in last 12 visits
  • Ranks 13th for putting this season on the PGA Tour
  • Three wins on the PGA can get the job done
Odds correct as of 2021-01-11 18:55 Odds subject to change.

My last pick this week goes in the shape of Charles Howell III, so good they named him three times.

The diminutive Georgian has amassed over $40m winning three times on the PGA Tour and rocks up at a course this week where he's played well before. 

In his last 12 visits to Waialae Country Club in this event, Howell has SEVEN top 10s, four in the top five and only finishing outside of the top 30 twice during that time.

The 41 year old has been consistent if unspectacular so far this season, but he ranks 13th for putting which is a big positive on a course where the scoring could be low (Justin Thomas won on a score of -27 in 2017).

He's a bit of a gamble but that's factored into the price of 50/1 and Paddy Power pay those eight places this week.

Best of the rest - Longshots & DFS

I've mentioned Daniel Berger above but I'd expect him to go well again this week, I'd have just hoped for a few points bigger at the prices (20/1). I think he's a good play in DFS at 10k, at the bottom of that top bracket of players.

Someone who is also on my radar but I'm not quite ready to pull the trigger is Marc Leishman who is a 66/1 shot this week. The Aussie had a wretched second half to 2020 but psychologically may have been able to hit the reset button for 2021 and although the sample is minute, his T24 last week showed glimpses of him regaining the kind of form which would put him in the top ten of the betting here in a 'normal' year.

Three 69's and a 71 from his four rounds where he was in the negative for shots gained putting all week have caught my interest and I'm likely to have a small play of him here at 66's whilst the $7,900 at Draft Kings looks a steal in DFS.

I'm also adding Leishman to my ante post portfolio on the BettingOdds.com golf tips page for the Masters in 2020. The Aussie loves the place with three top tens and despite his form last year he still managed to finish 13th, his best finish in the calendar year post COVID. He's 100/1 for the Masters at the time of writing and if we see a switch up in form over the next couple of months like he did at this time of last year (1st in the Farmers in January and 2nd in the Arnold Palmer in March), he'll be at least half that price come April when all eyes will be on Augusta.

One final player to keep an eye on this week who is dirt cheap in DFS is Doug Ghim. The American ranks 14th for both GIR and shots gained around the green in this week's field and he's a couple of top 20's in his last three starts. At $6,900 you may be able to fit both Morikawa and Berger into your lineups this week, whilst he's a 150/1 chance in the outright betting. 

As ever, good luck with your bets if you're following and please gamble responsibly. I'm going to keep showing my record post lockdown for a few weeks until we have some 2021 results to show.

Follow me at Twitter @rustyboy75.

Post-lockdown form:

Winners

  • Tyrrell Hatton - BMW PGA Championship - advised at 16/1
  • John Catlin - Irish Open - advised at 40/1
  • Jon Rahm - BMW Championship - advised at 14/1
  • Dustin Johnson - Northern Trust - advised at 20/1
  • Justin Thomas - WGC FedEx St Jude - advised at 12/1
  • Webb Simpson - RBC Heritage - advised at 30/1

Placed

  • Xander Schauffele - T5 Sentry Tournament of Champions - advised at 10/1
  • Laurie Canter - 2nd Italian Open - advised at 45/1
  • Kristoffer Ventura - T6 Sanderson Farms Championship - advised at 80/1
  • Xander Schauffele - 5th US Open - advised at 16/1
  • Kristoffer Ventura - T7 Safeway Open - advised at 80/1
  • Laurie Canter - 2nd Portugal Masters - advised at 66/1
  • Si Woo Kim - T3 Wyndham Championship - advised at 40/1
  • Jason Day - T4 USPGA Championship - advised at 40/1
  • Phil Mickelson - 2nd WGC FedEx St Jude - advised at 110/1
  • Viktor Hovland - 3rd Workday Charity Open - advised at 25/1
  • Kevin Streelman - T7 Workday Charity Open - advised at 60/1
  • Tyrrell Hatton - T4 Rocket Mortgage Classic - advised at 16/1
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