WGC Accenture Match Play Championship Betting Feb 19th, 2008
By: Our Staff
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PGA Golf Betting Preview – WGC Accenture Match Play Championship
If Mike Weir proved anything last season, it’s that Tiger Woods is not invincible in Match Play. Woods enters this week’s WGC Accenture Match Play Championship as the top seed in a 64-man field that boasts the best that the PGA has to offer. Tiger is the obvious betting favorite to win (he always is), but can anyone topple the mighty Tiger in a head-to-head contest?
The Gallery at Dove Mountain in Tucson, Arizona will host this year’s prestigious event. Up for grabs will be 26.250 FedEx Cup points and a purse of $8 million. In stroke play, Tiger and Phil have proven that they are well ahead of the pack. But this event is unconventional. There is no guarantee that Phil and Tiger will reward their betting faithful in this unpredictable event.
Think of the Match Play Championship like the NCAA’s March Madness for basketball. The top-64 players, according to the Official World Golf Rankings, are seeded and play in a viscious and unforgiving tournament. The top seed boasts a record of 29-8, while the 14th seed can brag about an 18-8 record.
The fifth seed is your worst bet because it’s the only seed in the top-10 that burdens a losing record at 6-9. That does not bode well for Adam Scott, the Australian who is currently the fifth best player in the world.
Phil Mickelson is the obvious second seed in the tournament and is putting together a marvelous season. His recent victory at the Northern Trust Open last weekend gives him plenty of momentum heading in to the Match Play Championships. However, the second seed is only 11-9 at the tournament. I like Phil at the number-two spot because it means he can avoid Tiger and hope somebody takes him out down the stretch. Phil is an excellent match play competitor and should earn some of your consideration this weekend.
Ernie Els, who has never been able to succeed past the second round of Match Play, enters the tournament as the number four seed. If you don’t like his past history in these types of events, perhaps the fact that the fourth seed has a 15-10 record should calm your betting nerves. Those who like the South African swinger can bet on him in our sportsbook. His dominant success in Match Play in England has not translated to triumph on American soil.
Steve Stricker is still America’s favorite underdog because he continues to produce despite Tiger and Lefty stealing all the attention. He’ll get a crack at Daniel Chopra in the first round, setting up a rematch of the Mercedes-Benz Championship playoff where Chopra bested Stricker. Still, Stricker is a steady and pure golfer whose careful game will allow his opponents to force mistakes and lose holes. The number three seed holds a favorable 14-9 record. Chopra’s inexperience in this type of event will cause him to get frustrated early, handing Stricker an easy victory in the first round.
Perhaps the best betting trend to prove how unpredictable this even can be is that only two top-10 seeds have entered the final four in the past three PGA Tour seasons. Last year, the final four were the 9th, 11th, 12th and 34th seed. Henrik Stenson won that challenge and will defend his crown as the “unlucky” thirteenth seed.
As always, this is Tiger’s tournament to lose. But if you are going to get behind your favorite dark horse in any PGA event this season, this is the one to do it. My money is on the seventh seed, Justin Rose, who is looking for a breakout event to put himself on the PGA map.
Bet on all your favorite power swingers and underdogs in our sportsbook today to add some fun to the weekend. The WGC Accenture Match Play Championships is a great even to watch, if only because it’s a time where even the best in the world struggle. Get in on PGA’s version of Madness as the field guns after Tiger in this heated and entertaining betting opportunity.
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