Euro Golf Digest - Port Wine Edition (Portugal Masters)
We are finding more MCs than a rap battle recently. Eddie Pepperell did finish T6 so he was a pretty good pick. Unfortunately Beef and Sharma missed the cut which gave us an awful core.
Andy Sullivan finished T28 which at his price wasn’t very good but still not awful. Haotong Li finished T24 and actually had a pretty solid week. Gavin Green ended up missing the cut which was our only good OUT pick. I managed to break even last week despite the awful picks.
Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Club (Par 71 – 7,146 Yards)
On to Vilamoura, Portugal for the Portugal Masters. The event has been played at Dom Pedro for a while so we have a full set of course history. Pretty open concept course with no trees. Fairways are fairly skinny but I don’t think golfers who wind up in the rough will be severely punished. Water is not a concern until you get to the 11th hole. Then the course closes out with a bunch of water hazards.
Previous winners are Lucas Bjerregaard (2017), Padraig Harrington (2016), Andy Sullivan (2015), Alexander Levy (2014), and David Lynn (2013). There is more course history than that but I only look at the previous 5 years. Also note Alexander Levy’s win in 2014 was only for 2 rounds as the tournament was shortened due to weather.
1) Birdies (Birds)
2) Strokes Gained Off The Tee (SG OTT)
3) Strokes Gained Tee To Green (SG T2G)
Looking as previous tournaments the scoring goes pretty low so I have Birdies as the most important stat of the week. Going to want golfers who can rain in the Birds. Next looking at the course I think golfers who are good with their drives could have an advantage as there are some pretty long holes so SG OTT is the 2nd most important stat of the week. Finally since the course closes out with water concerns we will make SG T2G our 3rd focused stat.
IN = I like him this week. OUT = Not in my player pool
Ruby Port ($9000+)
IN: Andy Sullivan ($9,700) – Our pivot to an OUT pick last week since Matt Wallace pulled out. He did fairly well last week as mentioned up top. Looking at the stats Andy is ranked 2nd in Birds, 1st in SG OTT, and 14th in SG T2G amongst the competition. Pair that with fairly good course history (1st in 2015, 2nd in 2016) despite the hiccup here last year. Not the greatest recent form although he may be turning things around as he has back to back T30 finishes.
OUT: Shane Lowry ($10,000) – Ranks 42nd amongst the field in Birds, 34th in SG OTT, and 18th in SG T2G. 2 out of 3 made cuts here the last 5 years with 29th being his best finish. His form is pretty good especially considering his recent appearances were on the big tour. Compared to others in his price range he falls short though.
Tawny Port ($7500 – $8900)
IN: JC Ritchie ($7,700) – A Sunshine Tour player but he has a few appearances on the Euro Tour this year. He’s done well recently on the Sunshine Tour as well as the Euro Tour events he has played this year. Ranking him out he is 1st in Birds, 7th in SG OTT, and 2nd in SG T2G. I mean you can’t ask for any better at this price point. No course history but again with his form he should do well.
OUT: Nino Bertasio ($7,700) – Young Nino as I call him even though he isn’t that young anymore. I think there was a song or something that said that. The good is he ranks out at 17th in Birds. The bad is he ranks out at 90th in SG OTT and 108th in SG T2G. That tells me he can make a lot of birdies but has trouble getting to the green. Course history and recent form aren’t bad – it’s just those stats threw him to the back.
White Port (<=$7400)
IN: Hunter Stewart ($7,100) – He has worked his way into my heart as my favorite on the Euro Tour right now. I will play him heavily until he fails to deliver for me. Let’s look at the stats though. 20th in Birds, 54th in SG OTT, and 12th in SG T2G. Looking at that tells me he isn’t the greatest with his drives be he makes up for it with his follow up shots. He is new to the Euro Tour but has been part of the Mackenzie Tour since 2016. He did WD last week on the Mackenzie Tour but I can’t find any info on it.
OUT: Richard Bland ($7,100) – 76th in Birds, 68th in SG OTT, and 111th in SG T2G. Tells me he doesn’t make a lot of birdies, isn’t great off the tee, and even worse with his follow up shots. Not the signs we are looking for this week. He does have very good course history here though including a 4th place finish in 2014. Recent form is OK but always near the bottom of the leaderboard when he does make the cut.
That is all I have for this week. Good luck and hopefully we can go back to back weeks with tournament winners.