WGC-Cadillac Championship Preview

By: Doc's Sports     Date: Mar 2, 2016

Adam Scott held off Sergio Garcia and the rest of the field to capture his 12th career PGA Tour title at the Honda Classic. The tour continues on the Florida swing, heading to Doral this week for the WGC-Cadillac Championship. This is the second straight event that features a star-studded field with close to the entire top 50 in the world playing. With the Match Play again playing later than it used to be, this is the first World Golf Championship event in 2016.

The Doral-Blue Monster Course is an interesting one. It has the reputation of causing havoc and on occasion, it does that to some but a lot of that is due to the intimidating finishing hole. Two years ago, the whole course took a new look as Gil Hanse oversaw a complete redesign. Doral seemed to get progressively easier over the years and the easy greens were part of that but we have seen the difference. Two years ago it averaged +1.85 strokes to par and last year averaged +1.24 strokes to par.

This is the 12th year that the WGC event has been played here but Doral has been a host course since 1962 which is one of the longest runs on tour. There are only 67 players in the field this week which means there is no cut on the weekend and players are more likely to take chances they would not normally do. Weather should not be a factor this week as sunshine is in the forecast but the wind, which is one of the equalizers at this track, will have to be tamed.

Of the field of 67, 38 players from last year are back while there are 19 players taking their maiden voyage at Doral. What does that mean? Considering Patrick Reed won two years ago in his first time here, we can't blindly count out first timers although experience here is a huge deal. Another big factor is distance off the tee because of the toughness of the course, shortening it as much as possible is ideal. Three of the top five in driving distance have been in the top four of the leaderboard the last two years.

We are seeing a very top heavy betting field this week as six players are listed at +1,200 or less. Rory McIlroy is the favorite at +825 while Bubba Watson, Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Adam Scott and Jason Day are all priced between +1,000 and +1,200. With this many low priced favorites, we are getting some excellent value elsewhere with many top players in the world getting bigger than expected odds.

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