January 8th, 2019

Sony Open in Hawaii Golf Preview

What a Start to the Golf last week with X Schauffele shooting a course record equalling 11 under par 62 to win the Sentry Tournament of Champions. There were Five US players in the first Seven places there. Will we see the same this week?

Sony Open

The defending champion is Patton Kizzire, who won after a play-off victory over James Hahn. Both players make the field which also includes, Thomas, DeChambeau, Woodland, Spieth and Reed.

The Course

The Tournament is being played at WAIALAE CC . The course has a set up that will be particularly tough for the opening 8 holes. The 9th par 5 and 10th par 4 are traditionally easy playing holes. The 13th par 4 was originally a par 5 and many will be glad to escape with a par. Hole 18 to finish is a par 5 and we can expect someone to win here with a birdie rather than lose it with a dropped shot. Recent winners have scored well so expect a score of -18 to -23 to win. 2018: Patton Kizzire (-17); 2017: Justin Thomas (-27); 2016: Fabian Gomez (-20); 2015: Jimmy Walker (-23); 2014: Jimmy Walker (-17)

Bunker play may be crucial or avoiding them the key. Stats that may help are Greens in Regulation (GIR) and Sand Save, although as always putting and Birdie average are a necessity.

The Candidates

Justin Thomas rightly heads the betting market. Currently, the 6/1 on Toals.com looks a bit short, though he will be in contention. C Howell & G Woodland have traditionally played well in Hawaii. At current prices of 28/1 and 12/1 respectively they are worth an each-way shout. Marc Leishman is around 16/1 and defending Champion Patton Kizzire is currently 33/1.

Most Likely

Justin Thomas heads the market and there are numerous reasons for that. in 2017 when winning here he led from start to finish. He saidI know this course, if you drive it well, you can play it really well.” His distance gets him into positions other players can’t reach giving him more opportunities to score. If his putter lights up he will win. Thomas is the highest ranked golfer in this tournament, currently sitting at number 4 in the owgr.

Justin Thomas heads the Field

Worth an Interest

We mentioned a few potential winners earlier. Two that would be high up on our list for this week are C Howell & M Leishman. C Howell knows the course extremely well, playing here regularly. He has 9 Top 10 finishes here out of 17 appearances. Leishman can also be in contention again this week. Finishing 4th last week means his confidence will be high. Definitely a streaky and confidence player, he has the chance to add to his 4 career pga tournament wins. Chris Kirk is our real Wild Card selection. Joint leader with Z Johnson after the 1st round last year. He has previously had 3 Top 10 finishes here including 2 Top 5. He likes the course and is a more endearin 66/1 @ Toals.com

Bet on Golf Toals.com