The Masters at Augusta is just a month away and traditionally heralds the start of many Fantasy Golf competitions along with a lot of excitement in the betting and TV viewing world for what is one of the biggest sporting events of the year.
Last year’s champion and green jacket holder Jordan Spieth is fast becoming one of the top earners in sport and will be out to defend his title from the likes of Rory McIlroy and Jason Day who make up the top 3 golfers in the World. The 2016 Masters won’t be a 3 horse race though. All the other winners of the Masters this decade are showing good form with Bubba Watson, Adam Scott, Charl Schwartzel and Phil Mickelson all finishing under par at last week’s World Golf Championship on the hugely difficult Doral course with Adam and Bubba finishing 1st and 2nd and Phil in 5th. Scott and Watson each won the previous two tournaments on the PGA Tour and Charl has already won twice on the 2016 European Tour albeit both times were in his home country, South Africa. The 2016 Masters could turn out to be very memorable if these course-specialists continue their fine form.
Rory McIlroy finished joint 3rd at Doral alongside the hard-working Danny Willett. Rory’s much talked about putting method change worked very well on Friday & Saturday – 7 under and 4 under respectively – but his final day round of 74 was disappointing and Augusta’s fast and undulating greens will really test the top professionals’ putting. If Rory is not confident with his putter then he may well miss out once again after finishing 4th at Augusta last year (behind Spieth 1st and Mickelson & Rose joint 2nd) and 8th in 2014 (Spieth 2nd behind Bubba) despite being one of the favourites in the betting. If you are thinking about backing your favourite sportsman then try your luck with betting with £50 free bet.
Typically the Masters 7,400 yard course suits a long hitter (particularly someone who can control a right to left shape hence why ‘lefties’ like Bubba and Phil often do well) and a great putter (like Bubba and Phil again!) with the back 9 offering the most birdie and eagle chances. The undulating design of the course and the super-fast greens means that newcomers to the course take at least a year or two to get to know the course properly so look to more experienced Masters players to put your money on or select for your fantasy golf team. With some of the restricted field having zero chance of winning the tournament, the cut to 60 and ties after Friday is not as relevant as most tournaments and quality players playing well should find they have all 4 days to make their mark.
FISO members will be looking out for the launch of fantasy golf games later this month. Keep checking FISO’s Fantasy Golf forum for the latest fantasy golf news where there are already details on the launch today of Bunkered Fantasy Golf 2016. There is also the sad news that Fantasy League Golf will not be relaunching in time for the Masters on 7 April 2016. Fingers crossed it does relaunch later this year.