Louis Oosthuizen ($11,200): I wasn’t shocked to see Louis Oosthuizen as the highest priced golfer for this event. The course this week is a rotation, but it includes the Home of Golf (St. Andrews) a place where Oosthuizen won his first major and also finished second to Zach Johnson in 2015. Oosthuizen’s a fantastic links player with a 6th and 5th place finish at this event over his last four visits and is actually a partial course record holder at St. Andrews. He’s also someone I fully expect to contend this week as his knowledge and overall comfort around the course is second to none. While the price is somewhat off-putting, Oosthy is still definitely someone I would want to fit in this week if the room can be spared.
Thomas Pieters ($10,900): The other top player I would definitely endorse using this week is Thomas Pieters. While there is always the thought of a Ryder Cup hangover, Pieters’ level of play at the Ryder Cup was so good that seeing him dominate this field would not shock me in the least. The big hitting Belgian should set up well for St. Andrews and its shorter par 5’s. Two years ago Pieters finished 18th at this event, but he’s evolved so much since that time that a dominant performance here is quite possible. He is currently 16th on tour in Driving Distance and 3rd in Scrambling. A deadly combo which should lead to plenty of birdies this week.
Tommy Fleetwood ($9,700): Fleetwood has proven himself to be a terrific links player over the past few years and is actually one of the co-record holders at St. Andrews, which is one of the courses in play this week. Even better is the fact Fleetwood has never missed the cut at this event in five tries and actually has three finishes of 5th or better in that span. The young Englishman has had a rocky season but has recently caught fire with his last three finishes being 13-7-10. While he’s definitely pricey, the combination of recent form and course history are too much for me to ignore.
Nicolas Colsaerts ($7,800): Colsaerts seems to fit the mold of other players who have had success here in the past. The Belgian hits it long and has the game to really take advantage of some of the short par 5’s and 4’s on this course. While he’s only played this event twice in the past six years, he does have a 9th place finish to fall back on from 2011. Colsaerts has been insanely consistent this year making 8 of his last 9 cuts, and I also like the fact he had his best finish of the year at another links course at the Scottish Open. At only $7,800 he looks like great value, and I won’t be shocked if he ends up having a massive week fantasy wise.
David Howell ($7,400): While it may not mean much, Howell actually ranks 4th this year in one-putts. The other thing that makes Howell very interesting is his history at this event and location, both of which are very good. Howell won this event back in 2013 and over six appearances has three finishes of 13th or better (including the win). While he doesn’t hit it that long anymore, he has been playing solidly of late making four of his last five cuts, a string which includes a 3rd place finish. The course history and cheaper price tag make him look like a solid pick to me this week and a top 20 or better would not surprise me.
Paul Dunne ($7,000): The Irishman has been hit or miss at times this season, but when he’s been on he’s produced some good finishes of late and has three finishes of 16th or better in his last six starts. What makes Dunne so attractive to me this week though is the fact he has some really great experience to fall back on as he famously led the Open Championship at St. Andrews after three rounds back in 2015 and also finished 19th at this event last season. While his on again, off again form makes him a tad unsafe, this is the venue I would feel most comfortable using Dunne and the one where I think he should have the most upside for fantasy.
Padraig Harrington ($6,800): Harrington hasn’t been in the best form of late as he’s coming in off of two missed cuts, but the Irishman has a great links record and a great record at this event where he’s made the cut 9 times out of his last 10 appearances (he was also the winner here way back in 2006). Harrington has had a decent season, so I wouldn’t let a couple mediocre recent performances put you off him here. In a lot of ways, he’s had a bit of a career renaissance the past two years and seven top twenties at this event over the past decade shouldn’t be ignored.
Marc Warren ($6,400): Warren is another player with very strong credentials on this course having made the cut here five times over his last five visits. The Scotsman clearly feels comfortable with his surroundings this week as he also posted a T27 at the Open when it was played at St. Andrews last back in 2015. Warren has been in a slump this season but has shown glimpses of good form of late with a 20th and 11th in his last six starts. For his price, however, this week I think he makes for a strong play and is someone I’d venture towards when dipping down below $6,500.
Ben Evans ($6,300): Evans is a big hitter who seems well suited for this course, and by that I mean his length should give him a better shot at making birdies on the shorter par 4 and 5’s. Evans has flashed some form after a slow start to the season, finishing 4th in his third to last start. The Englishman also finished 19th at this event last season and looks like a nice value play at $6,300 to me this week.
Ewen Ferguson ($6,200): Ferguson is a young Scottish golfer who recently turned pro. While that may not seem appealing, take note of the fact Ferguson finished 3rd in an amateur event played at St. Andrews recently and was also the number one ranked amateur player in Scotland last season. At $6,200, this will be his first full European Tour event as a pro, but I think his pedigree makes him an interesting tournament play nonetheless for fantasy. Don’t forget that we’ve seen several amateurs over the past couple of years on Tour come out with huge performances in their debuts.
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.