Welcome to another week of Virtual Insanity, where we spend virtual money to try and win virtual money on golf betting. It's that simple!
A good week last week!
One of our selections, Jason Kokrak, was placed at 14/1 in the BMW Championship, so we turned €20 of virtual cash into €30!
The pot is at €895 entering this week's tournament, the Tour Championship at East Lake in Georgia.
The action starts on Friday and this event brings down the curtain on the current season, with a FedExCup champion to be crowned on Monday night (Labor Day in America) from 30 golfers.
The new season will begin next week and we have the U.S. Open and Masters to look forward to before the end of the year.
So the way the Tour Championship works is that it rewards players that have been performing well by giving them a head start on the other competitors.
Dustin Johnson, Jon Rahm and Justin Thomas are the top three in the world rankings at the moment and they are also the top three in the FedExCup standings.
Johnson and Rahm played out a brilliant finish last Sunday and with the advantage of shots on the field, they are short in the betting, with Johnson at 15/8 and Rahm at 3/1. It's going to be hard to catch either of them, but as always, I am going for value.
These are the scores each player will start the first of four rounds on when they hit the Atlanta course on Friday:
-10 Dustin Johnson
-8 Jon Rahm
-7 Justin Thomas
-6 Webb Simpson
-5 Collin Morikawa
-4 Daniel Berger, Harris English, Bryson DeChambeau, Sungjae Im, Hideki Matsuyama
-3 Brendon Todd, Rory McIlroy, Patrick Reed, Xander Schauffele, Sebastian Munoz
-2 Lanto Griffin, Scottie Scheffler, Joaquin Niemann, Tyrrell Hatton, Tony Finau
-1 Kevin Kisner, Abraham Ancer, Ryan Palmer, Kevin Na, Marc Leishman
LEVEL Cameron Smith, Viktor Hovland, Mackenzie Hughes, Cameron Champ, Billy Horschel
I am picking three players all available at 1/5 the odds to finish in the first 5 places. These terms are available with Paddy Power, Betfair and William Hill.
Our first selection is Webb Simpson for €5 each way at 11/1.
Simpson is what they call in racing a 'fresh horse'. He deliberately sat out the BMW Championship at Olympia Fields last week and that may have been wise, as it proved to be a fiendishly difficult test and an exhausting one for players at that. Simpson will begin this four day shootout in fourth place on 6 under par. I think it's enough ground to make up. Simpson has won the Phoenix Open and the Heritage this year and finished tied for third at the Wyndham Championship and tied for sixth at the Northern Trust on his last two starts. He's a former U.S. Open winner, he blitzed the field to win the Players Championship in 2018 and he has posted three top fives at East Lake in the past.
Our second selection is Hideki Matsuyama for €3 each way at 28/1.
We saw a welcome return to form last week from Japan's Matsuyama, who at one stage a couple of years ago looked like he was going to conquer the planet. He hasn't won in three years, but has always been a beautiful ball striker. Last week's tie for third was more about his work around the greens, but if the swing co-operates, he can keep moving forward. Matsuyama has two top fives at East Lake on his CV. He has work to do to win, but he's not a bad each way proposition to get into the places, with victory a bonus. Rory McIlroy and Xander Schauffele came from down the handicap to fill the top two places last year, so it can be done.
Our final selection this week is Tony Finau for €2 each way at 45/1.
It's hard to fathom that for someone as consistent as American Tony Finau, there's only one PGA Tour victory to his name, back in 2016. Finau was fifth in Illinois last week, one of seven top 10's for him this season. His game is solid and he has two seventh placed finishes to his name at the Tour Championship. One of these weeks he's going to win by 20 shots! He'll need to if he's to catch Dustin Johnson, but once again I am looking at 9/1 for him to finish in the top five as a small value investment.
So that's €20 wagered on this week's golf.
Please gamble responsibly, never bet more than you can afford and good luck!