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2022 WGC-Dell Match Play Odds & Picks for Every Round: Bets for Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas, More

2022 WGC-Dell Match Play Odds & Picks for Every Round: Bets for Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas, More article feature image
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Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images. Pictured: Justin Thomas.

  • The PGA TOUR switches things up this week at the WGC-Dell Match Play at Austin Country Club.
  • Players have been divided into 16 groups for round-robin play, but only one from each can advance to the knockout rounds.
  • Jason Sobel fills out his entire bracket and makes his outright betting pick below.
Click arrow to expand 2022 WGC-Dell Match Play odds via Caesars

2022 WGC-Dell Match Play Odds

Golfer Odds
Jon Rahm +1400
Justin Thomas +1600
Viktor Hovland +1800
Scottie Scheffler +2000
Collin Morikawa +2200
Patrick Cantlay +2200
Dustin Johnson +2200
Xander Schauffele +2500
Billy Horschel +2800
Daniel Berger +2800
Tyrrell Hatton +3000
Louis Oosthuizen +3000
Joaquin Niemann +3300
Matt Fitzpatrick +3300
Brooks Koepka +3300
Paul Casey +3300
Bryson DeChambeau +3300
Jordan Spieth +3300
Shane Lowry +3500
Russell Henley +4000
Sungjae Im +4000
Brian Harman +4500
Talor Gooch +4500
Max Homa +4500
Adam Scott +5000
Will Zalatoris +5000
Abraham Ancer +5000
Tommy Fleetwood +5000
Kevin Kisner +5000
Corey Conners +5000
Sergio Garcia +5000
Alex Noren +6000
Tony Finau +6000
Webb Simpson +6600
Bubba Watson +6600
Maverick McNealy +6600
Jason Kokrak +6600
Patrick Reed +6600
Marc Leishman +6600
Thomas Pieters +8000
Si Woo Kim +8000
Keegan Bradley +8000
Tom Hoge +8000
Christiaan Bezuidenhout +8000
Sepp Straka +8000
Robert MacIntyre +8000
Keith Mitchell +8000
Justin Rose +10000
Mackenzie Hughes +10000
Erik van Rooyen +10000
Cameron Young +10000
Ian Poulter +10000
Seamus Power +10000
Harold Varner +10000
Sebastian Munoz +10000
Kevin Na +12500
Cameron Tringale +12500
Lucas Herbert +12500
Luke List +12500
Lee Westwood +12500
Min Woo Lee +15000
Matthew Wolff +15000
Takumi Kanaya +20000
Richard Bland +20000

Golf’s version of survive-and-advance March Madness returns to Austin Country Club for a sixth consecutive edition of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, featuring 64 of the world’s top players in (you guessed it) head-to-head matches starting on Wednesday.

I still lament the good ol’ days, when a player could be bounced from the bracket before he’d even digested a hot dog at the turn in that first match, though it’s completely understandable why many dissented against traveling halfway around the globe only to fire up the jet shortly thereafter.

Instead, once again the field has been built out of four separate pools of participants, based on world ranking, with one player from each pool placed in every group for a round-robin competition to determine who advances into the weekend.

Much like that other March Madness – actually, more than that other March Madness – seeding is inconsequential once it all begins. Last year, 32nd-seeded Billy Horschel beat 30th-seeded Scottie Scheffler in the final, while only one player (Jon Rahm) from Pool A won his group, but eight from Pool D won theirs.

Moral of the story: You might not want to go all-in with Kentucky and Baylor in your championship game.

There’s certainly more game theory involved in this tournament than others – and from a gaming standpoint, those with matchup betting experience should benefit over those who only play outrights and props.

The first strategy is to completely ignore those little numbers indicating a player’s world golf ranking next to each’s name. If those results listed above didn’t convince you, allow me to remind you that even upsets aren’t really upsets in this format. Don’t be afraid to play some plus-money head-to-heads.

As for choosing players to advance, look for groups with a potential weak spot. If you want to pick on Bryson DeChambeau in his first start back from an extended absence or Webb Simpson still trying to play at 100%, there could be value in the back end of those groups.

Let’s get right to the picks, through the entire bracket.

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Round Robin

Group 1: Jon Rahm, Patrick Reed, Cameron Young, Sebastian Munoz

My pick: Jon Rahm

Did I just spend most of my intro suggesting that we ignore all ranking biases, only to name the overall No. 1 seed in this spot. Why yes… yes, I did.

This has been a venue and format that has served Rahm well over the past few years. I’d love to combine the persistence and guile of Reed with the current form of Young and Munoz. Without that combo, though, I’ll stick with the chalk here.

Group 16: Brooks Koepka, Shane Lowry, Harold Varner III, Erik van Rooyen

My pick: Harold Varner III

OK, it didn’t take long to get away from the chalk.

I’d been eyeing HV3 for this spot over the past few days and while this isn’t the best possible draw for him, it’s hardly the worst, either. There’s certainly possibility for an unenthused Koepka and a gassed Lowry in this group, which should open things up for Varner, who ranks T11 in birdie average this season.

Varner tends to post a big number here and there, which has helped keep him out of the PGA TOUR winner’s circle so far, but in match play that won’t hurt him nearly as much.

Group 8: Dustin Johnson, Max Homa, Matthew Wolff, Mackenzie Hughes

My pick: Max Homa

An in-form Wolff would completely change the dynamic of this group, as few players own more offensive firepower when they’re on their games. I still think he could play spoiler in a match or two, but I’ll opt for the consistency of Homa instead, as he’s once again playing some very solid golf this year.

Group 9: Bryson DeChambeau, Talor Gooch, Lee Westwood, Richard Bland

My pick: Talor Gooch

As mentioned above, I was hoping for some solid value in the Bryson group, with him returning from that wrist injury. I don’t necessarily see it in Bland, whose results have been, well, sort of bland this year.

Westwood certainly owns the experience in this format, but I’ll go with a proven ball-striker in Gooch, especially if the wind starts blowing on this exposed track.

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Group 4: Patrick Cantlay, Sungjae Im, Seamus Power, Keith Mitchell

My pick: Keith Mitchell

I reserve the right to change my mind in the next two weeks, but I called Cantlay for a Masters victory at the beginning of this year and I’m sticking with it (for now).

That said, his strong start to the year has unraveled in a share of 33rd place at Riviera and an MC at TPC Sawgrass; I do think Cantlay needs to at least show some solid form this week. It wouldn’t stun anyone if he advances here, but as usual for me lately, I can’t seem to get away from Mitchell, whose unparalleled confidence should shine in this format.

Group 13: Tyrrell Hatton, Daniel Berger, Si Woo Kim, Christiaan Bezuidenhout

My pick: Daniel Berger

You can’t bet on this (sadly), but if there were odds on one match turning into an all-out, on-course brawl, my money would be on Hatton vs. Berger, two of the most fiery competitors in the game. That one should be must-see TV on Friday afternoon and should determine the final outcome.

I’ll take Berger in extra holes in what should be one of the most intense matches of the week.

Group 5: Scottie Scheffler, Matt Fitzpatrick, Tommy Fleetwood, Ian Poulter

My pick: Tommy Fleetwood

Is this the Group of Death? Maybe if it turned into a 3-on-1 Ryder Cup match.

As it is, this should be a very difficult one to predict – for all six matches, which should have a semblance of balance between them. We can make the case for any of these players, but I’ll go with Fleetwood on the hypothesis that he’s continually getting closer in full-field events and maybe having just one player to beat each day will be the secret formula he needs to focus and unlock his best golf.

Group 12: Billy Horschel, Thomas Pieters, Tom Hoge, Min Woo Lee

My pick: Thomas Pieters

As the defending champion, Horschel is always a threat to make some noise, especially in this format.

I have a tough time seeing past the birdie machine Pieters, though, as I believe his game is finally starting to turn a corner, transcending from massive potential to talent. He’s insisted that he is a more mature player now than in previous years, which suggests a greater consistency moving forward.

Group 2: Collin Morikawa, Jason Kokrak, Sergio Garcia, Robert Macintyre

My pick: Sergio Garcia

A group as eclectic as it is talented, this one should provide plenty of sparks during round-robin play.

It’s tough to fade Morikawa, who could certainly spend the week knocking down flagsticks, or Kokrak, who owns an enviable driver/putter combo, but I can’t get away from Sergio in his adopted hometown.

Garcia was my pick to win it all last year and a hole-in-one in a playoff against Westwood might’ve portended serendipity, but he was upended in the quarterfinals by Victor Perez. Even so, it showed his willingness and desire to step on the gas pedal here, in front of so many friends and family members.

Group 15: Abraham Ancer, Webb Simpson, Brian Harman, Bubba Watson

My pick: Abraham Ancer

For my money, this is the most well-rounded group of the 16; if you asked a casual fan to name which player came out of which pool, most would struggle to figure out the correct answer. (A: Ancer, B: Simpson, C: Harman, D: Watson.)

While I was looking to fade Webb before the groups were released, I had the names of Ancer, Harman and Watson all on my shortlist. From there, it’s a bit of a toss-up, but I’ll take Abe to prevail on a course which should suit his game.

Group 7: Xander Schauffele, Tony Finau, Lucas Herbert, Takumi Kanaya

My pick: Takumi Kanaya

What’s the opposite of the Group of Death? It might be this one.

While Schauffele isn’t an undeserving top seed, the rest are hardly tearing it up right now. The safe play is certainly Schauffele and the safe play might very well be the right play, but I’ll take a shot on the former No. 1-ranked amateur in a bit of a coming-out party in the pro ranks.

Group 10: Louis Oosthuizen, Paul Casey, Corey Conners, Alex Noren

My pick: Paul Casey

Give me your flushers, your ball-strikers, your brilliant approach shot artists yearning to breathe free. If you just want to watch pretty golf swings for three days, this might not be the flashiest group, but you won’t see a whole lot of ugly shots in that time.

Fresh off a title contention at THE PLAYERS, I’ll give the nod to Casey here, but I really like what Noren has been doing lately and could envision him advancing instead.

Group 3: Viktor Hovland, Will Zalatoris, Cameron Tringale, Sepp Straka

My pick: Viktor Hovland

Perhaps my favorite match of the first three days will be the one between Hovland and Zalatoris, two ball-strikers of the most elite level, conflicted with a singular deficiency. For Hovland, it’s chipping; for Zalatoris, putting.

Well, the latter is going to need his flatstick to work a lot more often than the former will need his wedge, so the play is the Norwegian, though I’ll allow that Straka could make some noise here, too.

Group 14: Joaquin Niemann, Kevin Na, Russell Henley, Maverick McNealy

My pick: Maverick McNealy

Somebody must’ve known something when McNealy withdrew from the alternate-field Corales Puntacana event on Sunday evening, when he was still the first alternate in this one. When Sam Burns WD’d not long before the drawing was announced, McNealy had his spot – and we should look for him to make the most of it here.

This will be an understatedly difficult group of guys who don’t make mistakes, but I like the one who has the most to gain here.

Group 6: Justin Thomas, Kevin Kisner, Marc Leishman, Luke List

My pick: Justin Thomas

This should be among the tougher groups from which to advance, as Kisner owns a 16-6-1 since the event moved to Austin, while JT and Leish have seen a modicum of success, as well.

I’ll potentially have some sort of investment on all four of these players at Augusta National in a few weeks, but for now, I’ll take the guy with the most talent, the biggest chip on his shoulder and perhaps the strongest desire to collect some hardware of anyone in the field.

Group 11: Jordan Spieth, Adam Scott, Justin Rose, Keegan Bradley

My pick: Keegan Bradley

The only group to boast four major champions, it’s easy to envision three of ‘em looking ahead to the Masters, even if Spieth owns some additional motivation from playing in his college hometown.

The fourth is Bradley, who’s been sneaky-good this season, with four finishes of 12th-or-better in 12 starts. Like so many other groups, there isn’t an easy out here, but Bradley holds plenty of value.

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Round of 16

Jon Rahm vs. Harold Varner III

My pick: Harold Varner III

How’s that for a Cinderella pick to bust some brackets? I admittedly might be placing too many eggs in the HV3 basket this week, but without the Masters invitation hanging over his head (he’s already clinched), I think a loose Varner can play giant-killer this week.

Max Homa vs. Talor Gooch

My pick: Talor Gooch

This would be a fun matchup between ball-striking buddies, but I’ll give the edge here to Gooch, who snuck into this field as the highest-ranked player last year, has climbed to 32nd in the world ranking right now, and has shown signs that he’s a potential long-term top-20 type of guy.

Keith Mitchell vs. Daniel Berger

My pick: Keith Mitchell

If the Berger vs. Hatton match is as intense as I think it could be, the following morning could serve as the proverbial letdown game. That is perhaps an overreach on the foresight, but it’s not incomprehensible – and Mitchell is an opponent for which he’ll need his best stuff on Saturday.

Tommy Fleetwood vs. Thomas Pieters

My pick: Thomas Pieters

What a delectable matchup of European players with incongruent games. Once again, I think Pieters’ ability to make birdies in bunches could serve as too much for Fleetwood to overcome in this one.

Sergio Garcia vs. Abraham Ancer

My pick: Abraham Ancer

Yet another potential Sweet 16 matchup of good friends. That could help Ancer, as Garcia tends to play his best golf when his intensity levels are at their greatest and his ire is up.

Takumi Kanaya vs. Paul Casey

My pick: Paul Casey

Not all Cinderella stories have a happy ending; at some point, the clock has to strike midnight. I’m still not completely sold on Kanaya reaching the weekend, but I’m certainly not sold on him advancing beyond this point, as Casey’s form should continue to carry him.

Viktor Hovland vs. Maverick McNealy

My pick: Maverick McNealy

He might not outwardly talk about it, but McNealy is the type of player who undoubtedly has designs on competing in Ryder and Presidents Cups in the not-too-distant future. He’ll see this as an opportunity to pounce on one of Europe’s superstars and showcase his stuff for any captains down the road.

Justin Thomas vs. Keegan Bradley

My pick: Justin Thomas

As I wrote and said right after Thomas’ latest title contention at the Valspar Championship this past weekend, he’s soooo close. With seven finishes of eighth-or-better in his last 10 starts, big things are coming very, very soon. He’d rather that it happens a fortnight from now than this week, but he won’t complain about continuing to advance here.

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Quarterfinals

Talor Gooch vs. Harold Varner III

My pick: Talor Gooch

If it indeed all works out this way, it’ll be one thing for Varner to knock off the world’s No. 1 player on Saturday morning; it’s another for him to grab a quick bite and go win again. I’ll take Gooch to keep ball-striking his way to Sunday.

Keith Mitchell vs. Thomas Pieters

My pick: Thomas Pieters

Getcha popcorn ready. This one won’t lack in hubris on either side, as a pair of confident-bordering-on-cocky players should be in fine form here. Call it a hunch, but I continue seeing this as a big week for Pieters to keep it going.

Abraham Ancer vs. Paul Casey

My pick: Paul Casey

The golf gods work in mysterious ways. Just last week, we watched as Casey’s latest, greatest chance at the biggest win of his career took a misdirected turn when his drive on the 70th hole of The Players landed in another ball’s pitchmark. Maybe those deities were just setting him up for this one.

Maverick McNealy vs. Justin Thomas

My pick: Justin Thomas

It’s been over a year since JT’s most recent victory, but he can still beat the guy in front of him on most occasions. Don’t be surprised if he streamrolls his way into the weekend and puts it on cruise control once he gets there.

Semifinals

Talor Gooch vs. Thomas Pieters

My pick: Thomas Pieters

What more can I say about Pieters’ game? He’s trending, he’s peaking and he’s in the perfect format to accentuate all of the positives without being impacted too badly by the negatives.

Paul Casey vs. Justin Thomas

My pick: Justin Thomas

This was a close one for me, but in the end, I just couldn’t pull the trigger on Casey, despite the fact that he’d own some good value for what would undoubtedly be a plus-money price in this match.


Championship

Thomas Pieters vs. Justin Thomas

My pick: Justin Thomas

At times during the past year, JT has seemed frustrated with his own performance. After his most recent contention, he preached patience and maintained that good things are coming soon. He might not have specifically portended this championship, but it would hardly come as a surprise if – or when – he romps through his opponents to win this week.

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