We finally leave Florida and make our first of four scheduled trips to Texas for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play. This event debuted in 1999 and will be played this year at the Austin Country Club, a course that seems to cater to the big hitters but does require some smart hitting as well due to the wind pickups. Last week was quite forgettable with three of our five golfers failing to make the cut, but Jon Rahm did finish in the top-10 and gave us a chance at a victory at +1100 odds.
Here are five golfers to consider throwing on your card this week.
Sergio Garcia, +4500 - Sergio Garcia doesn’t have a great history at this event, as he’s struggled to finish inside the top-10 most years. However, Garcia is money when it comes to Ryder Cups and it should only be a matter of time before his luck changes on this course given that it’s a home event with him living in Austin. I’ll ignore his poor showing last week at the Valspar Championship and back Garcia with these decent sized odds given how effective he usually is in these type of tournaments.
Rory McIlroy, +1000 - Rory McIlroy is coming off a win at the Players Championship and has finished no worse than sixth in each of his last six events. McIlroy is obviously no stranger to match play success, as he won this event in 2015 and finished runner-up in 2012. The last two years haven’t been kind to McIlroy, which includes finishing outside of the top-30 both times, but his current form makes these odds tough to pass up.
Justin Rose, +2000 - Justin Rose is coming off a strong showing at the Players Championship, and maybe that momentum is enough to finally lead to some success in Austin. It hasn’t been pretty for Rose at his event, finishing no better than 17th in each of the last eight years, but he’s one of those guys who thrives in these type of environments and has been a crucial piece in Ryder Cups over the years. Don’t give up on Rose just yet, even though the history hasn’t been kind to him.
Rafael Cabrera-Bello, +6600 - Rafael Cabrera-Bello has had a couple of shaky performances at the Players Championship and Valspar Championship, but before that he was competing for a title at Arnold Palmer and stringing together top-25 finishes in 10 of his last 11 events. Cabrera-Bello is no stranger to success in match play, as he finished third in Austin back in 2016 and won two of three in the group stages the year after. Cabrera-Bello is a nice dark horse this week, assuming he can build on what’s been a solid small sample size.
Louis Oosthuizen, +4000 - Louis Oosthuizen is coming off a runner-up finish last week at the Valspar Championship, and that’s a good sign when you consider his success in match play. Oosthuizen was runner-up in this event in 2016 and won his group last year before settling for a ninth place finish. Oosthuizen got back on track at the right time after a month of struggling, making him a strong dark horse this week given his ability to show up at this event.