This week the top 64 players in the World Rankings tee it up in Texas for the yearly matchplay event. This is the fifth season in succession that the Austin Country Club has played host to the unique event. The course is a typical Pete Dye design constantly asking questions with uncomfortable carries foist upon the players. Bermuda green specialists have a slight advantage especially if they have a strong short iron game at an undulating parkland course.
Dell Technologies Matchplay
March 24th to 28th, 2021 – Austin Country Club
Par 71 – 7082 yards
Differences Between Diet of Stroke Play and Matchplay
Undoubtedly, the matchplay format frees up the mind slightly given the competitors don’t have to worry about one bad double or triple bogey ruining their tournament. In theory, players can be more attacking, but of course, that needs to be tempered by a sixth sense of when to be conservative. The great, Seve Ballesteros was a great exponent of the format in the World Matchplay hosted on the European Tour and the Ryder Cup with his ultra attacking brand of golf. He was always susceptible to the odd double or triple bogey and thus Matchplay suited him perfectly with his tenacious style and massive will to win.
Tyrrell Hatton to Carry On Tradition
The Matchplay is a difficult event for our best bets. However, an overlooked player this year is Tyrrell Hatton, who looked in solid form prior to the Players Championship. In recent years at this event he has been regularly winning matches at the Austin Country Club and building his course experience. His climb to the top of golf has been rapid during the last twelve months and he is a proven winner over in America. A decade ago, three Englishman, Paul Casey, Ian Poulter and Luke Donald dominated the Matchplay and another winner from England looks overdue. Tyrrell Hatton is the sort to fill that void.
Can Jason Day Win a Third WGC Dell Technologies Matchplay?
Jason Day won his second Matchplay title the first time the Austin Country Club played host to the WGC Dell Technologies Matchplay in 2016. His very best form appears to be simmering under the surface of some consistent recent efforts. Perhaps the matchplay format can free his mind up a little. Matchplay is an art of its own as I explained above. There must be a sense of frustration building in Day, given his lack of recent wins, despite being a model of consistency on the PGA Tour in 2020/2021. To add a little weight to the theory that this will be easier to win for Day than a strokeplay event. Kevin Kisner’s 2019 win in the event was his only win since the 2017 Dean & Deluca on the PGA Tour.
Golf Betting Pick: Jason Day to win at +5000 with BetOnline
An American, a South African and Two Englishmen
Throughout the years we have seen several players ideally suited by the demands of Matchplay golf. One of them is Kevin Kisner, who built on the runner up finish to Bubba Watson in 2018 by winning in 2019. Despite what appears a lottery 18-hole Matchplay format, the same players have often excelled. Further proof of that was 2019 runner up Matt Kuchar, who was champion in 2013. Jason Day, we discussed previously but Rory McIlroy has twice made the final while Tiger Woods won three times and Geoff Ogilvy had two wins and a runner up spot to illustrate the theory. Kisner has been consistent in 2021 without hitting any great heights, but undoubtedly his combative style of play will be a match for all.
- Paul Casey has been in strong form in 2021 with an early win on the European Tour in the Dubai Desert Classic and a strong Players Championship performance in fifth. As we mentioned earlier, Casey has a proven pedigree and ability to go deep in this event.
- Ian Poulter has struggled to win PGA Tour events but has been very proficient over the years in The World Matchplay, winning in 2011 and reaching the quarter-final stage on seven occasions in fourteen attempts. Recent weeks have been a struggle for the veteran Englishman, but his record demands respect this week.
- Louis Oosthuizen has a similar profile and despite many high place finishes in major championships the 2010 Open Champion has yet to win an American PGA event. The closest he came was here in 2016 when he was runner up to Jason Day. Like Poulter, he has a similar level of consistency in this format and in better current form on the PGA Tour.
In conclusion, Louis Oosthuizen and Kevin Kisner are drawn in the same group as recent Players Championship winner, Justin Thomas, so I will avoid them in the outright market. However, with Poulter they are worth a second glance in match markets. For another outright selection, I will trust the ultra-consistent Paul Casey to go deep.
As always, keep an eye out for our Golf odds and add Top 4 finish for all three selections once firms price.
Golf Betting Pick: Paul Casey to win at +2500 with BetOnline
*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.