2023 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Odds & Picks: Bet Jordan Spieth, Tyrrell Hatton, Corey Conners & More
Via Julio Aguilar/Getty Images. Pictured: Jordan Spieth of the United States plays his shot from the second tee during the third round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club on March 18, 2023 in Palm Harbor, Florida.
We head to Austin Country Club this week for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play. This is the final edition of the Match Play at Austin Country Club, and there is no match play event on the schedule for 2024.
Austin Country Club is a par 71 measuring 7,108 yards. It is a Pete Dye design and features dormant Bermudagrass greens that are overseeded with Poa Trivialis.
The Dell Technologies Match Play is yet another designated event, therefore there is a prize pool of $20 million. The field will consist of 64 of the Tour’s top players. The only notable exceptions are Justin Thomas and Justin Rose.
Past Winners at Austin Country Club
- 2022: Scottie Scheffler (5 seed)
- 2021: Billy Horschel (32 seed)
- 2019: Kevin Kisner (48 seed)
- 2018: Bubba (35 seed)
- 2017: Dustin Johnson (1 seed)
- 2016: Jason Day (2 seed)
5 Key Stats For Austin Country Club
Let’s take a look at five key metrics for Austin Country Club to determine which golfers boast top marks in each category over their last 24 rounds.
1. Strokes Gained: Approach
Strokes gained: Approach is always a great place to start when creating a predictive model. Pete Dye designs have challenging green complexes, making it crucial to hit your spot when hitting approaches to the green, and the greens at Austin CC are smaller than TOUR average.
Total SG: Approach over past 24 Rounds:
- Tom Hoge (+28.9) (+7000)
- Max Homa (+27.6) (+2000)
- Tony Finau (+25.3) (+2200)
- Scottie Scheffler (+25.2) (+800)
- Collin Morikawa (+24.9) (+2500)
2. Strokes Gained: Off the Tee
In match play, driving distance can play a huge factor. Whoever has the furthest drive will have the luxury of seeing what his opponent did with his approach before deciding on which strategy to apply. The greens are firm at Austin Country Club, so playing from the rough or using a longer iron on approaches will cause some issues for golfers.
Strokes Gained: Off the Tee over past 24 Rounds:
- Patrick Cantlay (+22.8) (+1600)
- Scottie Scheffler (+22.6) (+800)
- Keith Mitchell (+21.3) (+5500)
- Rory McIlroy (+20.6) (+1100)
- Viktor Hovland (+19.4) (+2200)
3. Strokes Gained: Pete Dye Designs
Pete Dye specialists seem to always bring their best game when playing on Pete Dye designs. Golfers’ comfort level on the unique layout of the course this week should play a factor this week.
SG: per round on Pete Dye designs over past 24 rounds:
- Shane Lowry (+2.0) (+7000)
- Corey Conners (+1.8) (+8000)
- Scottie Scheffler (+1.8) (+800)
- Tyrrell Hatton (+1.7) (+2800)
- Sungjae Im (+1.7) (+4000)
4. Birdie or Better Gained
A unique aspect of match play is the fact that a terrible hole doesn’t take you out of the match. If your opponent makes birdie, it doesn’t matter if you make a par or a quadruple bogey; you simply lose the hole and move on to the next. Therefore, targeting golfers who make a lot of birdies and force their opponents to match will be a sound strategy this week.
Birdie or Better Gained over the past 24 rounds:
- Jon Rahm (+37.4) (+1100)
- Patrick Cantlay (+24.3) (+1600)
- Max Homa (+22.9) (+2000)
- Scottie Scheffler (+22.5) (+800)
- Keith Mitchell (+22.4) (+5500)
5. Strokes Gained: Putting (Bermudagrass)
Putting is especially important this week as golfers will need to make plenty of pressure-packed putts in the match play setting. Historically, great putters have won this event, and flat stick prowess should prove to be a factor again.
Strokes Gained: Putting (Bermudagrass) over past 24 rounds
- Maverick McNealy (+29.9) (+9000)
- Taylor Montgomery (+26.8) (+7500)
- Jon Rahm (+23.3) (+1100)
- Andrew Putnam (+23.0) (+18000)
- Sam Burns (+22.1) (+3500)
2023 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Model Rankings
Below, I’ve compiled overall model rankings using a combination of the five key statistical categories previously discussed — SG: Approach (28%), SG: OTT (22%), BOB:Gained (20%), SG: Pete Dye (15%) and SG: Putting (Bermudagrass) (15%).
- Jon Rahm (+1100)
- Tyrrell Hatton (+2800)
- Tony Finau (+2200)
- Scottie Scheffler (+800)
- Viktor Hovland (+2200)
- Patrick Cantlay (+1600)
- Max Homa (+2000)
- Rory McIlroy (+1100)
- Sungjae Im (+4000)
- Xander Schauffele (+2200)
2023 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Picks
Strategy is most definitely a factor when building an outright card for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play. My picks are from different portions of the bracket, and none of them would have to face off against each other until at least the quarterfinals.
Jordan Spieth +2500 (DraftKings)
Jordan Spieth was agonizingly close to getting his 13th career PGA Tour win last week at the Valspar Championship, but a missed short putt on 17 and a late flurry from Taylor Moore kept him out of the winner’s circle. Overall, the performance was a positive one in what’s been a strong season for the three-time major champion.
At Copperhead, Spieth gained 4.3 strokes on approach and 7.0 strokes from tee to green to go along with gaining 4.6 strokes putting. It was the first week we’ve seen his putter get hot, but the ball striking has been consistent over his past two starts. The 29-year-old had some costly bogeys, but he also made a ton of birdies, which will serve him well in a match play event.
Spieth now returns to Texas where he’s extremely comfortable and will be a fan favorite. He’s 16-15-4 lifetime in singles matches.
Pick: Jordan Spieth Outright
Tyrrell Hatton +2500 (DraftKings)
Tyrrell Hatton checks all of the boxes for me this week. The Englishman is arriving at Austin Country Club in terrific form, having finishes of fourth (Arnold Palmer Invitational) and second (THE PLAYERS Championship) in two of the strongest fields of the season.
Austin CC should be an even better fit for the 31-year-old than the last few courses he’s competed on. This course is on the shorter side and has typically been kind to shorter hitters off the tee who are great around the green players and putters. In years past, we’ve seen players with similar skillsets such as Billy Horschel, Kevin Kisner and Matt Kuchar have a great deal of success in the event.
In their past 24 rounds, there are few players in the field playing better than Hatton. He ranks among the top 10 in the field in Strokes Gained: Approach, Strokes Gained: Off the Tee, Birdie or Better Gained, Strokes Gained: Putting on Bermudagrass and Strokes Gained: Total on Pete Dye designs. In his most recent start at THE PLAYERS, Hatton gained 8.4 strokes on approach, which ranked third in that elite field.
Tyrrell Hatton is the ideal type of golfer to win a match play event. He is currently in top form, is a great course fit, has Ryder Cup experience and has a competitive mentality that should suit him in this format.
Pick: Tyrrell Hatton Outright
Collin Morikawa +2800 (DraftKings)
When we last saw Collin Morikawa, he finished 13th at The PLAYERS Championship. After getting out of the gates hot, it looked as if the two-time major winner was going to be a major part of the weekend storyline at TPC Sawgrass. However, Morikawa slowed down after his torrid start thanks to a cold putter.
While Morikawa undoubtedly had higher hopes than a top-15 finish, his ball striking numbers were once again undeniable. He led the field in Strokes Gained: Approach, gaining 9.4 strokes on the field.
At last year’s Dell Match Play, Morikawa got out of his group after beating Robert McIntyre, tying Sergio Garcia and beating Jason Kokrak and advanced to the round of 16. He lost to Abraham Ancer handily, but the experience of getting out of the group stage in last year’s event should serve him well in 2023.
Morikawa has the ball striking ability to put a great deal of pressure on his match play opponents. If he can get his putter to cooperate, he’ll be a tough out for anyone in the field.
Will Zalatoris +3300 (BetRivers)
I believe there’s a good deal of value on Will Zalatoris this week, and he happens to come from the last part of the bracket that makes up a well-constructed outright card.
Zalatoris made it to the quarterfinals in last year’s event before going down to a red-hot Kevin Kisner. He made it out of the group stage in a pool that featured Viktor Hovland, Cameron Tringale and Sepp Straka. This experience should serve him well this season, and I believe he’s in a very winnable group once again with Ryan Fox, Harris English and Andrew Putnam.
His form is a bit shaky at the moment, but Zalatoris tends to rise to the top in bigger events, and the course should suit him well once again in 2023. The 26-year-old is 4-3-1 lifetime in singles matches.
Pick: Will Zalatoris Outright
Corey Conners +8000 (DraftKings)
Corey Conners made a deep run in the 2022 version of the event, making it all the way to the semifinals before Kevin Kisner took him out. He then went on to handle Dustin Johnson fairly easily in the consolation match, giving him the third-place finish.
The bracket shook out favorably for Conners once again. On the surface, it looks as if he will have a date with Jon Rahm in the round of 16 if he makes it out of his group, but the Spaniard drew a pretty difficult group that features Billy Horschel, Keith Mitchell and Rickie Fowler and is no guarantee to escape.
If Rahm gets upset, Conners may have a relatively reasonable road going forward. He also drew the second-to-last one-seed in Cameron Young, who doesn’t have the match play experience as a professional or proven track record as many of the other one seeds in the event.
Conners is 6-5-1 lifetime in singles matches.
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