GOLF analyst Lewis Blain (@LewisBlainSport) shares his betting thoughts ahead of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open | 8th-11th October 2020 | Sky Sports
The PGA Tour rolls into Las Vegas for its regular stop, the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
TPC Summerlin plays host as it has done since 2008. It's typically an easy desert track, measuring over 7,200 yards as a par 71. Typically, you'll need a score in excess of -20 to win around here this week.
It's why we've seen a mix of winners here in the past, ranging from major winners Tiger Woods, Bryson DeChambeau and Webb Simpson to younger breakthrough types like Patrick Cantlay, Smylie Kaufman and Martin Laird.
Indeed, the recent US Open champion tees it up for the first time since that triumph and unsurprisingly, he heads the betting as do Simpson and Cantlay, a trio of former winners.
Scottie Scheffler (30/1 William Hill)
I tipped Scottie Scheffler here last year, claiming that he's “surely one of the next to win on the PGA Tour” but in return, we got a DFL T74. Although he did open with a pair of 67s before fading away.
He's still yet to win which is perhaps quite the surprise given the form he's been in this year. He's made seven straight cuts, which includes a T15 at the WGC, T4 at the PGA Championship, T4 at the Northern Trust and a runner-up place at the season-ending Tour Championship. He teed it up for the first time since missing the US Open with COVID-19 and was quick to shake off the rust with a respectable finish.
He was 4th on the PGA Tour for par-4 birdie or better leaders as well as 9th for overall birdies, and has been inside the top five for SG: T2G in three of those starts as mentioned above. Scheffler is my favourite bet this week.
Joaquin Niemann (50/1 Betfair)
Another name that piques my interest is Joaquin Niemann, who often shows up on course which feature Bentgrass greens as he's a winner at the Greenbrier Classic.
He's recently cracked the OWGR Top 50 after some top performances this year, including a T3 at the BMW Championship. Niemann was one of the only ones that could get close to Jon Rahm and Dustin Johnson.
Whilst a 10th here, a 6th at Murfield Village and a 9th at Colonial in 2018 as well as fifth-place finishes in Detroit and at River Highlands last year emphasise his eye for these sorts of greens.
Denny McCarthy (70/1 Betfair)
Someone looking for their first win on Tour is Denny McCarthy and he makes serious appeal this week having enjoyed a T6 at last week's birdiefest. The young talent excels on the greens (1st for SG: Putting last two years), so he could really make the most of this week's test if the rest of his game falls into place.
McCarthy has gone T15-T9 here in the past two years and in fact, he scored more birdies than eventual winner Kevin Na here last time. These odds could prove to be a gift come Sunday.
Doc Redman (70/1 Betfair)
In very much a similar mould to those already mentioned, Doc Redman joins the staking plan as the final bet of the week. He was a popular pick last week but could only finish in a tie for 28th. His ball-striking is all there with the putting letting him down frequently but perhaps a return to Bentgrass could help as he sits around the mean average in this field.
Redman has also recorded a pair of T3s at the Wyndham and more recently, the Safeway Open. He also has a runner-up at another birdiefest, the Rocket Mortgage.
I have also thrown a few darts on a pair of long-shots in Tyler McCumber (175/1) and Justin Suh (200/1). Whilst these don't make my ‘official' staking plan, you're welcome to follow me in.
Given the nature of this week's test, we could see someone from deep get a good run at contending. Suh is a local resident who came through with the likes of Collin Morikawa, Victor Hovland and Matthew Wolff whilst McCumber is riding a hot streak at the minute, going 2nd-T6 in the last two weeks. He's won on other tours, so it's not like it's completely overawed by the prospect of winning.
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – Scottie Scheffler (30/1 each-way William Hill)
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – Joaquin Niemann (50/1 each-way Betfair)
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – Denny McCarthy (70/1 each-way Betfair)
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – Doc Redman (70/1 each-way Betfair)
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – Tyler McCumber (175/1 each-way Betfair)
Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – Justin Suh (200/1 each-way Betfair)