The Tour now makes it way to Shanghai, China for The WGC-HSBC Champions at Sheshan International Golf Club. (7,266 yards) Just like last week, this is another no cut event, that will be held on a Par 72 track. This event started in 2005 and it has taken place at Sheshan every year since, except 2012. Hideki Mastuyama is the defending champ, absolutely dominating the field last year winning by seven strokes, finishing the week up at -23. Finding the fairway isn’t a necessity at this course and I think it is better to have a little length off the tee. To shoot low numbers here, which is a must, you also need to be a strong approach player who can put well on Bent grass greens.
Over the last four seasons, the winners of this WGC stop have putt a low 25.6 average putts per round in their wins. Furthermore, Par five scoring will be key, as these four Par fives are some of the easiest holes at Sheshan. Two of the last four winners have led the field in par five scoring during their week, including Mastuyama who shot -12 on these Par fives just a year ago, making Par five scoring a significant stat this week. Also, I know I say this with every no cut event, but I think it also extremely important to target golfers who score well in DraftKings’ scoring system. Oh, and don’t forget as we are still in Asia, this week’s roster lock is early again at 6:00 PM Wednesday night, allowing us to get our winnings before NFL Sunday. @Hunta512.
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Paul Dunne: (7,600) If you have been following golf close over the last few years, you might remember Dunne’s name from the 2015 Open Championship, where he was tied for the lead heading into the final round as a 22-year-old amateur. Two years later and Dunne is one of the top money leaders on The European Tour. Over the last few months, he has been playing some of the best golf of his young career, making his last six cuts, including four top 30 finishes, and his first career win at The British Masters, where Dunne edged out Rory McIlroy by three strokes just a few weeks ago.
In these last six events, he has been finding 70% of greens in regulation, has a 295.6-yard average drive, has been putting 27.6 average putts per round, and is shooting -7.6 on par fives per tournament. It is inflated with a win in there, but during this stretch of golf, he has been averaging a great 96.3 DK points a tournament. This will be his first ever start at Sheshan, but I think the Irish player’s strong tee to green game and putting sets up very well for this track. I don’t think he will be a popular pick making him one of my favorite GPP targets of the week. (5-8% projected ownership via Fantasy Labs)
Alexander Noren: (7,800) At $7,800, Noren seems very underpriced even with some very big names in this field. Right now he is the #16 ranked player in the world and has made five of his last six cuts, including two top tens. His form isn’t perfect right now, but he has been putting up some solid stats, ranking 16th in strokes gained tee to green, 9th in strokes gained approaching the green, and 29th in strokes gained putting over his last 12 rounds. (via Fantasy National)
Also, he has had some high finishes here in the past, with two top 20s in four career starts at Sheshan Golf Club. It’s no surprise that he has had success at this track, as he is a terrific putter on Bentgrass type greens, gaining 4.070 strokes putting on Bentgrass in his last 19 starts on this type of surface, which is the highest average of any player in this field. (via Fantasy Golf Metrics) He has plenty of upside this week and is a golfer who also might be low owned with some chalky plays like Tony Finau and Matt Kuchar in the same price range. (9-12% projected ownership via Fantasy Labs)
Branden Grace: (7,600) Grace is coming off a nice T15 showing at The CJ Cup last week. In this start, he was on fire with his driver and irons, hitting 87.5% of the fairways, and sticking 80.6% of the greens at Nine Bridges, which ranked him T3 in greens hit for the week. The rest of his numbers haven’t been eye popping, but his game has been trending up, as he ranks 16th in DraftKings points, 17th in strokes gained tee to green, 26th in strokes gained approaching the green, 26th in strokes gained on Par fives, and 18th in birdies or better gained over his last three starts. (via Fantasy National)
He now heads back to Sheshan, where he has finished T30th and T5th in his last two trips to Shanghai. In his T5 finish in 2015, he played very well with his irons, averaging a 81% GIR rate, which is the exact part of his game that is coming together right now. At this price, I like taking my chances on Grace riding this form into another top 20 finish at this course that he is very familiar with.
Also Consider: Lucas Glover, Kyle Stanley (another top 25 last week and is playing on another Par 72, which is exactly his type of course, as I pointed out in last week’s post), Russell Henley, Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Chez Reavie (five top 20s in his last six starts), Adam Scott, Hao-Tong Li, and Talor Gooch.