WATCH: PRICE CHECK – VOLVO CHINA OPEN
This week’s event is taking place at Topwin Golf and Country Club, in Beijing, China. This will only be the second year this venue has hosted the event. Let’s get right to the picks.
Alexander Levy ($9,400): Levy had one of the best rounds of the week at the Shenzhen International as he fired a third round 64 to vault himself into contention. Although he fell short of the actual win, the Frenchman was one of the top scorers on DK and, at well under $10k this week looks underpriced compared to his peers. Levy did play this course last year, finishing T28, and brings a nice blend of current form and former success in Southeast Asia to the table as he has won events in this region before. While there’s certainly some solid options priced above him, I’d much rather start my teams this week by paying up for Levy as his upside seems more than comparable with those priced higher.
David Lipsky ($8,900): It was a toss up between Lipsky and Kiradech Apibarnrat for me at this price, ultimately, however, I think Lipsky is the better play in a sort of shoot-out style event, as the American — who plays regularly on the Euro Tour — seems to thrive at events with low scoring. Since October of last season, Lipsky’s recorded four finishes of T5 or better and also recorded scores of 10 under or better in all of those results. In short, Lipsky has a proven ability to take advantage of easier scoring tracks like the one players will see this week and, coming off a solid week, is a great target for DraftKings’ birdie-friendly format. He also finished T9 at this event last season.
Pablo Larrazabal ($8,600): Larrazabal has been circling with some good results of late. After a slow start at the Shenzhen International — likely due to fatigue from a long flight in from Morocco — the Spaniard ended his week with progressively better rounds of 67-66 on the weekend. This kind of momentum should help him on a golf course that is going to encourage low scoring. Over his career, Larrazabal has thrived at these type of venues as all four of his victories have been at winning scores of 14 under or better, a total which should be well exceeded by the winner here. He looks like a great cash game play at an affordable price.
Peter Uihlein ($8,300): I’ll make this one short and sweet. If I liked Uihlein at over $10k last week, I guess I have to love him at $8,300 here. Uihlein has made 10 cuts in a row now and seems to be simply coasting through these weaker Euro fields with ease. The big weekend will come eventually but at only $8,300, even if it doesn’t, he’ll still be a good play if he produces at the same rate as last week.
Alejandro Canizares ($7,400): Canizares is one of my favorite targets this week in the mid-range. He’s a streaky player who put together three top-10s in four starts last season in the blink of an eye and — after closing with a 65 last weekend to finish T29 — is someone we need to take notice of this week. This will be Canizares’ first time seeing this course on tour, but he’s proven to like birdie-fest style tracks as his two Euro wins were won with scores of 19 under and 22 under par. I won’t be afraid to roster the Spaniard, who also could draw some inspiration from his fellow countryman’s (Sergio Garcia) recent major success.
Alex Bjork ($7,300): Bjork’s ball-striking this season has allowed him to record five finishes of T17 or better already in just nine starts. While he had a bad missed cut in Morocco a couple of weeks ago the extra rest might have done him some good as he bounced back with a T14 last week. Ranked 25th in Greens in Regulation the young Swede should have plenty of looks at birdies this week and ranks out as one of the more solid plays at his price range. I’d trust him in any format here, he’s been trending towards a big finish all season.
Nicolas Colsaerts ($7,300): Colsaerts has endured a slight slump since the middle of last year, but the Belgian showed some signs of life last week with a closing 67 in the final round at the Shenzhen. While his stroke average is up slightly from his career average in 2017, he should be on your radar for large tournaments here as the big hitter showed a propensity for the course last season by putting up a T15 on the back of a third round 65. Colsaerts faded in the final round at this event last season, but after a nice finish last week he might be on the lookout for some revenge. Regardless, the upside is there for him on an easy course with some drivable holes.
Jorge Campillo ($6,800): After making six straight cuts in a row since the end of 2016, Campillo has now missed two of his last three cuts, including last week at the Shenzhen International. Still, at just $6,800 there’s reason for optimism here as many players were fatigued last week coming in from Morocco, and Campillo did finish a solid T19 at that event just two weeks ago. Having played the course and made the cut at this event last season I’m not afraid to get back on Campillo this week at a reduced price; he’s now posted five finishes of 25th or better in his last nine starts and brings upside others simply do not at his price-point.
Haydn Porteous ($6,700): Porteous is a great looking young player who has finally found some form after a slump filled 2016. He’s now made five straight cuts and flashed among the leaders for a while in Morocco a couple of weeks ago. While the South African can be streaky there is some comfort in knowing he finished T19 at this event last season with four rounds of 69 or better. At just $6,700, he’s got immense upside as a tournament play this week.
Matteo Manassero ($6,500): Manassero is a player I’ve written up many times over the past few months, mainly because he continues to be priced very cheaply and also continues to play relatively consistent golf. The Italian and former multiple-time winner on tour has made five cuts in a row now and flashed some upside recently with a T3 at the Indian Open. He’s been shaky with the putter at times but is still ranked inside the top-25 in Greens in Regulation and should have plenty of looks at birdies this week on an easy setup. At $6,500, he looks like top value once you dip below $7k.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is wavegoodbye) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.