FedEx Golf Tour Championship Preview and Top Betting Tips

Craig Edwards

Tuesday, August 20, 2019 8:12 AM UTC

Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2019 8:12 AM UTC

Will Justin Thomas be the hunter or the hunted this week at East Lake?

<div><h2><strong>FedEx Tour Championship </strong></h2><p><strong>August 22-25<br />East Lake Golf Club, Atlanta<br />7346 yards, Par 70</strong></p><h2><strong>Introduction</strong></h2><p>Since 2004 East Lake Golf Club has been the permanent home to the PGA Tour season ending Tour Championship. First laid out by Tom Bendelow in 1904, then re-designed by Donald Ross in 1913 and a later revamp from Rees Jones in 1994. The course has always stood the test of time with no extra tricks other than hitting fairways and avoiding the Bermuda rough. The thick Bermuda rough is punishing surrounding the fairways and around the greens.</p><p>Last season who could forget Tiger Woods return to the winners-circle when winning the Tour Championship while Justin Rose won the FedEx play-off series at the same time. This year however, it has been revamped so the winner of the Tour Championship and FedEx Play-off series are the same. This has been done by a form of handicapping from the Top 30 rankings of the two play-off events so far.</p><p>This is how it will work with Starting score for the players on Thursday for Round one</p><p>-<strong>10</strong> Number 1 ranked player <strong>Justin Thomas </strong></p><p>-<strong>8</strong> Number 2 ranked player <strong>Patrick</strong> <strong>Cantlay</strong></p><p>-<strong>7</strong> Number 3 ranked player <strong>Brooks Koepka </strong></p><p>-<strong>6</strong> Number 4 ranked player <strong>Patrick</strong> <strong>Reed</strong></p><p>-<strong>5</strong> Number 5 ranked player <strong>Rory McIlroy </strong></p><p>-<strong>4</strong> Numbers 6-10 ranked players</p><p>-<strong>3</strong> Numbers 11-15 ranked players</p><p>-<strong>2</strong> Numbers 16-20 ranked players</p><p>-<strong>1</strong> Numbers 21-25 ranked players</p><p><strong>Even Par</strong> Numbers 26-30 ranked players</p><p>The player with the lowest aggregate 72-hole score after these starting strokes applied will be the winner of both the Tour Championship and play-off series.</p><p><a href=";a=4417b7df-a48f-47f3-9b45-f79858bc083a&amp;f=3" target="_blank"><img alt src="" style="width:100%" /></a></p><h2><strong>Betting Predictions and Tips </strong></h2><p>We know from years previous at East Lake Golf Club that no particular player type dominates on a tough but fair track. The two players that have won on multiple occasions Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson have not qualified. We know that this year’s dynamics have changed with the leader's in the FedEx play-off series beginning with an advantage as illustrated above.</p><p>It will take a mighty effort from any players ranked 11<sup>th</sup> or downwards in my opinion on a difficult course where low scores are a rarity. Be careful with your bets this week as there is the Tour Championship/FedEx winner and a 72-hole strokeplay winner without the added strokes.</p><p>Justin Thomas is the hunted player at the top of leaderboard this week after a superb BMW Championship catapulted him to the top of the FedEx rankings. He won the play-off series in 2017 and could not have timed his run better.</p><p>The next player is Patrick Cantlay who regular readers of mine will remember has been profitable all season long with a Memorial Tournament victory at 23.00 and last week second at 25.00 each way. A model of consistency we can expect him around the top of the leaderboard all weekend.</p><p>Next player up Brooks Koepka form has dipped from his high standards the previous two weeks but may react strongly to the $15,000,000 first prize incentive on offer this week. 2018 Masters champion Patrick Reed has found his best form of a busy year in recent weeks and warrants respect while Rory McIlroy cannot be dismissed only five shots back.</p><p>I am not convinced the course suits many of the principals so for some small stakes each way value this week we will take the Spaniard <strong>Jon</strong> <strong>Rahm</strong> who has been in sublime form for the last three months. Starting with a 3<sup>rd</sup> the US Open at Pebble Beach he has six top 7 finishes with one win in the Irish Open. The sort of player who looks uncomfortable when in the lead, he appears to savour the task of chasing and will be one of the few that thrive on the new format.</p><p>A real grinder and course specialist <strong>Webb</strong> <strong>Simpson</strong> who has three top 5 finishes in the Tour Championship. Like Jon Rahm not a natural front runner I fancy his chances of grinding improvement from his starting position of tied sixth from six shots behind.</p><p>Another player I am confident can improve their position this week and that is the Australian <strong>Adam</strong> <strong>Scott</strong> who has three previous top 10 appearances here since his 2006 win. Back to back top 10 finishes in this FedEx Play-offs series show he is finding his form.</p><p>Last week Japan's <strong>Hideki</strong> <strong>Matsuyama</strong> was a fast finisher from off the pace in the BMW Championship with a round of 63 grabbing a 3<sup>rd</sup> place finish. He has been below his best all season so this could be the start of an upswing and with two top 5 finishes at East Lake Golf Club he will be one of the few players not ready for the season to end. There is a market that gives a perfect bet for a player who does not win in regulation play as much as he should. Seventy-holes without FedEx starting strokes added should be perfect for Hideki Matsuyama this week.</p><h2><strong>Recommended Bets</strong></h2><p><a href=";a=4fd3c129-b898-4816-9a61-9f7e8f34295a&amp;f=1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Golf Betting Odds"><em><strong>Jon Rahm – each way @ 17.00 (16/1) Unibet </strong></em></a></p><p><a href=";a=4fd3c129-b898-4816-9a61-9f7e8f34295a&amp;f=1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Golf Betting Odds"><em><strong>Adam Scott – Top 10 @ 2.75 (7/4) Unibet </strong></em></a></p><h2><strong>*Without FedEx Cup starting strokes</strong></h2><p><a href=";a=df66db4b-b019-4343-9fc7-6c4f20e2a356&amp;f=1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Golf Betting Odds"><em><strong>Hideki Matsuyama – each way @ 21.00 (20/1) Paddy Power </strong></em></a></p></div>
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