The PGA Tour’s main stop this week, the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play, will be like a heavyweight boxing fight. It will feature one-on-one, knockdown, drag-out battles on the golf course.
The event will be held Wednesday, March 24, at Austin Country Club in Austin, TX, and the top-64 ranked players in the world have been invited to attend.
Just think, this week, the Tour players don’t have to beat the other 143 players on the field. They just have to beat their opponent. But, here’s the catch: They have to win six head-to-head matchups.
That’s right, we aren’t talking about a stroke-play event or even a Stableford event where players accumulate points. This one is mano-a-mano.
Odds To Win The WGC-Dell Technologies From DraftKings
- Justin Thomas +1200
- Bryson DeChambeau +1200
- Dustin Johnson +1200
- Jon Rahm +1400
- Rory McIlroy +1800
- Collin Morikawa +1800
- Patrick Cantlay +2000
- Paul Casey +2500
- Viktor Hovland +2500
- Tony Finau +2500
It’s A Marathon, Not A Sprint
This is a five-day marathon event that kicks off Wednesday with 16 brackets of four players each. Each player in each bracket will tee up against the other three in their bracket over the first three days. The scoring is simple: Win your match, and you get a point. Halve your match, and get a half-point. Lose your match, and it’s zero points.
At the end of the three days, the top player in each of the 16 groups advances on to the Saturday morning round where there will be eight matches. The winner of each of those matches moves on to the afternoon session when there will be just eight players remaining.
Those final eight will be playing for four spots in the two semifinal matches which will take place Sunday morning. Then, it comes down to the two winners moving on to the finale while the two losers will battle it out for third place money.
Got it? We knew you would.
Can Kevin Kisner Stay Hot In Texas?
Now, let’s take a look at the 2021 event and see if we can narrow down a player or two who should be in the mix when it’s all said and done.
We’ll start with the defending champion, Kevin Kisner at +6600 at DraftKings. That’s a big number for a guy who has played so well here. He not only won the event in 2019 (the 2020 event was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic), but he also lost in the final in 2018. He knows the course. He’s great with the format. There’s no reason to believe he shouldn’t be able to survive this week.
Survival Is The Name Of The Game
It’s a week of survival. In 2019, Kisner wound up playing 120 holes over his run to the title. And he started the week out with a loss to Ian Poulter on the first day of round-robin play so he was behind the eight-ball from the start.
It didn’t slow him down. He’s No. 36 in the world rankings this year so he’s in the middle of the pack to start. We don’t think he will be at the end.
In this format, anything can happen. Just look back to 2019 as Lucas Bjerregaard was ranked No. 50 and wasn’t on anyone’s radar heading into the tournament. That all changed, big-time.
He made it to the semifinals before falling to eventual runner-up Matt Kuchar. Along the way, Bjerregaard also upset Tiger Woods in the quarterfinals so this is definitely an event to keep an eye on everyone in the field. That’s especially true with daily betting as upsets can happen early and often so there’s money to be made.
Two Others To Keep An Eye On
We’ll also look at one player near the top of the world, No. 2 ranked Justin Thomas and, all the way down the list at No. 58, Brian Harmon. Thomas, at +1200, is coming off a win at the Players Championship and Harmon, at +8000, is coming off a T-3 at the Players that moved him into the top 64 and punched his ticket to play this week in Texas.
Both certainly are playing well enough to win. But, then again, the entire field is filled with players who can say the exact same thing.