UA-33754892-1 Archives for 30 November 2014 | Jason Kelly Golf

Jason Kelly Golf

Golf Betting Tips

Hero World Challenge, Nedbank Golf Challenge and Nippon Series JT Cup

This week we have three decent events to look at. Two with very strong fields and an event in Japan which has some strength at the top of the market and an interesting runner I want to back, despite his recent form.

Lets have a look at Tiger’s event first, the Hero World Challenge now played at Isleworth Golf and Country Club. The venue is pretty key this week with a number of the players living here, having lived here or living close by. For example, Bubba Watson bought Tiger’s house here a few years back. But this course is well known by a number of these players and is also used as part of the Tavistock Cup rotation. I played the course a couple of years ago and it is a good test. From the very back tees it is a pretty long track with a number of raised, severely contoured greens. With no wind the scoring should be fairly strong, but if it gets breezy then there could be some big numbers out there, especially from the more rested players.

Length is a good advantage at Isleworth but one will need good touch too. I am sure they will get these greens as quick as they can in this limited field. That will no doubt suit the more recently active players who have played in Dubai and Australia on fast greens. They will be tuned in and their touch more instinctive and trusted. But this is a seriously competitive market and will take a lot of winning. If one of these players is bang on he can extend from the field, they all have that quality, but it is tough to pick a player here that is the most likely.

We know Stenson and Spieth have been red hot in their last two starts. Stenson cruising to victory in Dubai despite never really making much and Spieth, who talked about feeling like he was close to peaking the whole week, before blowing the field away with a Sunday 63 in Australia. That was one of the greatest rounds I have seen, If either of them maintain their form they will surely win. Hence they are 7/1 and 10/1 respectively. 7/1 Stenson in this line up seems short enough as he as only won once this year. 10/1 Spieth has more appeal out of the two. Rose at 15/2 is an awful price. Fowler at 11/1 and McDowell at 16/1 should put in their showing, but again, they aren’t prolific winners and are hard to back at the prices. Bubba Watson lives here, is obviously long and can handle the wind. I wouldn’t put anyone off the 8/1 but like I said, picking a winner is very difficult here and I want the each way on my side this week.

The three players that look worth investigating at the prices are Matsuyama, Woods and Reed. Matsuyama beat Spieth in Japan at the Dunlop Phoenix. He has all the attributes required here but lacks the course knowledge that some of the others enjoy. He has won 7 times in the professional ranks, including The Memorial on the PGA Tour last year and the former world amateur number one has no fear. He looks a decent each way proposition at 16/1.

Trying to come up with an honest assessment of Tiger Woods’ chances this week is very difficult. Is he fit? Is his golf game in good order? Is he ready? All questions almost impossible to answer by anyone apart from him. He says he is fully fit and has been able to practice as he wants to for the first time in years. If this is truly the case then he has to have a good chance, a much better chance than his odds would suggest. But I have concerns. I hear murmurs that he is out of love with the game and practicing and playing feels like work, instead of being something that he used to enjoy and look forward to. If this is the case then the price is correct. What we do know is Woods can contend and can win without being fully fit or really playing particularly well. He didn’t in the few events he played in 2014 where he only managed 1 top 25 in 7 starts. It may be worth chancing that his heart and head is back in it, which would make 16/1 too big to ignore.

Patrick Reed looks the lively longshot to be with. He hasn’t been quite at his best but he has been close. We know he is not short of belief and will relish the chance to beat a strong line up and yet further prove that he belongs amongst the elite. The only problem with backing Reed is that one feels a good week may still see him finish outside the top 4, such is the quality. I think the play is to back Matsuayma with a small saver on Woods, both at 16/1.

The Nedbank Challenge played on the Gary Player course at Sun City, South Africa rewards good drivers of the golf ball. When we played the Di Data there driving was even more crucial. We played the course longer, wetter and with heavier rough, but a quick look through the form for the Nedbank shows you the benefit of driving your ball well.

When Ross Fisher is playing well he drives the ball as good as anyone and has good course form here finishing 3rd in 2009 and 5th in 2011. He lost a playoff to Marcel Siem in the BMW Masters a few weeks ago, which is the only bit of recent form to talk about as such. Lake Malarian is a long course and this won’t play as long, but perhaps tighter. If Ross putts well he can go close and already has one win in SA this year. 25/1 is fair.

Alexander Levy was in the playoff with Ross and Marcel Siem in China and has been the form man in Europe of late. There is no doubting his ability to make birdies and the apparent ease he builds low rounds is mightily impressive, as is the confidence and apparent comfort he displays when in contention. However, he is not the straightest hitter and therefore is not backed this week at a generous 25/1.

When Koepka is on he is maybe the best driver of the golf ball out there yet he says his putter is his biggest weapon. He has an impressive run of top 10s around the world before climaxing with a huge win in Turkey. (Nice to see both out US Money List bets, Koepka and Matsuayama winning around the world in events that do no count towards US Money!) He has only played in Dubai since where he slumped to 42nd, not too much of a surprise. The question is, will he be grinding here or enjoying the rewards of a great rookie season in the Casino and sponsors parties? 16/1 feels like a bit of a risk about the talented American.

Tim Clark is one of the straightest drivers out there and he returns to his homeland with a big chance. He lost in a playoff last time out to Bubba Watson in Shanghai on a course that really didn’t suit. He has a 3rd and a 2nd here in ’09 and ’10. 20/1 looks very fair.

When you see Schwartzel in this event and he isn’t among the first four in the betting you start salivating at the opportunity to back him. However, even with his course form of 6-2-6 the last three years along with his unreal ability and a price tag of 14/1 we can still not back him. He has not cracked the top 40 on his last 3 starts and is driving it wild this year. He may get inspired by home comforts but he is not a bet this week.

Kaymer is 12/1 and has been playing some good stuff. He has been lurking like a win is not far away but here he will have to chip and I just don’t like him if he isn’t quite on. His approach work will have to be spot on if he is to win here.

Brendon Todd is the interesting longshot here. 50/1 looks very big about the young American who has only played twice since the start of September. He finished 48th and 60th in these two starts but he was off a long break before the first start and the second event was his first start in Asia. This course should suit the short, straight hitter who is one of the best putters around. The course is so American and I think he can get in the mix at a big price. He has a very similar profile to Tim Clark as a player and had a better 2014. Clark has the better recent form and course form but at over twice the price Todd gets the nod.

In Japan they play the Nippon Series JT Cup at Tokyo Yomiuri Country Club. It is not long at 7023 yards but it provides a decent test for the top 25 on the Japanese Money list and all the tournament winners this year. The favourite, Hiroyuki Fujita is a three time winner and finished 8th last year, when going for his 4th win in a row. The one I am going to back has possibly the worst recent form amongst the leading contenders but does have three top 10s in four starts here and that is Ryo Ishikawa. He started showing some good form at the end of the season in the States and although he hasn’t finished in the top 30 in Japan the last four weeks I do fancy him to go well here. 22/1 is a reflection of his poor run of recent form and it is worth taking the added value on him to go well this week.

Hero World Challenge

1.5 points each way Hideki Matsuyama @ 16/1 (-3 pts)
0.75 points Tiger Woods @ 16/1 (-1.5pts)

Nedbank Golf Challenge

0.75 points each way Ross Fisher @ 25/1 (+4.69 pts)
0.75 points each way Brendon Todd @ 50/1 (-1.5 puts)

Nippon Series JT Cup

1 point each way Ryo Ishikawa @ 22/1 (-2 pts)

Special Bets

2 points Stenson to beat Rose @ 21/20. Round 1 Matchbet, Hero World Challenge (+2.1 pts)
2 points Matsuyama to beat Kuchar @ Evs. 72 hole match bet, Hero World Challenge. (-2 pts)

2014 running total =  -94.77 points. This week’s investment 13.5 points. This weeks P&L = -3.21 points

(Already advised) US Money List 2015

1.5 points each way Hideki Matsuyama @ 80/1
0.5 points each way Brooks Koepka @ 150/1

2013 total - 24.22 points
2012 total +150.36 points
2011 total +370.78 points
2010 total +189.33 points

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My advice comes with a point system to rate the strength of a tip. A 1 point bet means placing your usual stake, so if you would consider your normal bet being £10 then a point signifies £10.