Betting Picks for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play: Our Favorite Longshot Bets
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images. Pictured: Max Homa
- While we haven't seen any huge longshots win the WGC Match Play at Austin Country Club, we did watch Kevin Kisner take home the trophy as a 60/1 sleeper in 2019, so this event isn't all about the chalk.
- Here are our favorite longshot bets for the 2021 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
The 2021 WGC-Dell Match Play is truly a tournament for March. Just like the NCAA Tournament, the WGC Match Play features 64 entrants and a format that is ripe for madness. Last time out it was Kevin Kisner who upset the field and cashed at +6000 odds. Will we see another longshot come through at Austin Country Club?
Here are our favorite longshot bets and sleeper picks for the 2021 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play at Austin Country Club:
Victor Perez (+12500)
The last two winners of this event were Kevin Kisner at 60/1 and Bubba Watson at 50/1, so there’s some rationale for digging beneath the favorites. That said, I wouldn’t go much deeper than those prices for an outright — my favorites in that range are Jason Day and Abraham Ancer — but there’s definitely value in just betting players to advance past the group stage and even into the quarterfinals.
Following a week at THE PLAYERS when he made the cut on the number Saturday morning, then climbed the leaderboard on the weekend to finish T-9, I think the underrated Perez can make some noise this week. I’ve got him advancing from his group and even winning a Round of 16 match, too.
Victor Perez (+12500)
We haven’t seen someone come from out of nowhere to win this event at Austin Country Club yet but I’ll still take a chance with Victor Perez at this price.
My strategy is to dodge the super high-end players and instead find a player with a manageable draw. Perez was placed with Sungjae Im, Marc Leishman and Russell Henley, so he’s in a wide-open grouping.
Im has put up some decent results, but his approach game has been shaky of late. The South Korean has lost strokes with his approach in four of his last five starts. Meanwhile, Leishman doesn’t have a top-30 finish in the past couple of months and, sure, Henley finished third last week but he gained eight strokes with the putter to get there.
Henley is the one that concerns me the most, but without a DJ or Bryson to get through, I think Perez at triple digits is definitely worth a stab.
Max Homa (+9000)
There is an argument to be made that Max Homa has been one of the best golfers on TOUR in 2021. Homa just recently concluded a stretch of eight-straight tournaments with his only missed cut coming in his last start at THE PLAYERS. The other seven events saw him post six top-25 finishes including a win and two more top-10s. He finally took a week off and will go into the WGC Matchplay finally refreshed.
I really like Homa’s chances to make it out of his group with a potential matchup with another young player in the Sweet 16, making his value look quite a bit better than the number DK has saddled him with this week.
We don’t have any history on Homa in match play tournaments, but the same can be said for his group favorite in Collin Morikawa and if I’m digging deep, it’ll be to look for the best spots for players to make it out of their group and hope they can get hot from there. Homa certainly fits that bill.
Jason Day (+5000)
While Jason Day may not be a total sleeper, I believe he is mispriced. In his career, he has an overall singles Match Play record of 24-14 which is good for the fourth-best winning percentage in the field (minimum of two starts).
Day won this event in 2016 which was the first time the WGC Match Play was hosted by Austin Country Club. While he isn’t playing at the level he was back in 2016, he is showing signs that his overall game is trending in the right direction.
In his most recent start at THE PLAYERS Championship, Day gained 11.2 strokes tee to green which was tied for second best in the field, only trailing the eventual winner Justin Thomas. Inexplicably, what failed him at TPC Sawgrass was the putter, which has arguably been his most reliable club throughout his impressive career.
He gained strokes putting in all three of the events leading up to THE PLAYERS so the horrendous putting performance (-7.7 strokes) is likely an outlier. He got a tough draw being placed in a group with Scottie Scheffler and Xander Schauffele which may cause him to go under the radar this week.
Corey Conners (+5500)
Making it out of group play is the most essential part of this tournament and Conners finds himself in one of easier sets in this field. Matthew Wolff has been in horrendous form while also nursing a wrist injury. Jordan Spieth has seemed to have resurrected his career over the past month or so, but he still remains somewhat of an unknown, while the Englishman Matt Fitzpatrick has not been good at this event in the past.
Enter Conners, who followed up his solo third at the API, with a solo seventh-place finish at the PLAYERS. The Canadien has been one of the hottest ball-strikers on TOUR of late, sitting fourth in this loaded field in SG: Ball-Striking.
It’s been his approach play that’s carried him, as he’s now gained two or more strokes with his irons in four of his last eight rounds. In addition to his tee-to-green prowess, the biggest improvement in Conners’ game recently has come with his flat stick, as he sits seventh in this field in SG: Putting across his past eight rounds as well.
Assuming he wins his group, he would most likely meet Justin Thomas in the Round of 16, who might be on somewhat of a letdown after his heroics at the PLAYERS. Conners is on fire right now and I like the number we’re getting on him here.
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