2018-19 WGC-HSBC Champions Golf Betting Odds & Picks

Last Updated: 2018-10-22

wgc hsbc champions picks and oddsFive years ago, the WGC-HSBC Champions became an official PGA Tour event and since then, it has been one of the strongest fields in the wraparound portion of the season. That holds true this year, as 19 of the world’s top 30 in the Official World Golf Ranking are on hand in Shanghai, China at Sheshan Golf Club for the first of four WGC events this season.

This course has hosted a European Tour event ever year since 2005 and then the Asian Tour became a major player in 2009. It took a while for the PGA Tour to come around, but with the ongoing expansion efforts to bring high-level golf to Asia, it was a long overdue development.

Like last week’s CJ Cup and also the CIMB Classic, this is a restricted field. With a lot more big name players on hand in China, some of the guys that were alternates for the previous two events will be on the sidelines for this one. The major champions and the Players champion gain automatic entry, as well as those that won a WGC event last year, the top 50 in the OWGR, the top 30 in the FedEx Cup, the top 30 in the Race to Dubai, and additional players from the Asian Tour, Japan Golf Tour, PGA Tour of Australasia, the Sunshine Tour, and players from China make up the field.

Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson, Russell Knox, Hideki Matsuyama, and Justin Rose are the five winners since the PGA Tour got involved beginning with the 2013-14 season. Last year’s top four were Rose, DJ, Brooks Koepka, and back-to-back runner-up Henrik Stenson, so this is definitely a course that brings out the best. The $10 million purse and the $1.8 million first-place prize don’t hurt either.

The other WGC events are the Dell Match Play, the Mexico Championship, and now the FedEx St. Jude Classic, with the Bridgestone Invitational taken off of the calendar.

The course at Sheshan took a lot of effort. There are manmade waterways, lots of bunkers, and manmade elevation changes to give the course a little bit of bumpiness. Some greens are big and some greens are small, but they generally play pretty fast and firm. Several slope down towards water hazards, which will increase the importance of a solid short game in terms of chip shots or bump and runs. It’s a good test for the players, especially depending on how the weather plays. Wind can make the hazards more of a challenge, but rains can soften up the course a little.

Dustin Johnson is the favorite this week in the 8/1 range at 5Dimes Sportsbook. This will be DJ’s first event since the Ryder Cup. He finished third at the Tour Championship, but the Ryder Cup wasn’t really a shining moment in his career. He played 20 events last year and had 12 top-10 finishes, including a second here, but it should have been more than that. Johnson blew an eight-shot lead on the last day with a 77. It didn’t set him back for the season, but you can bet that he’s out for retribution this week. The problem is that an 8/1 price point isn’t great for him here. He had three wins last year, but they were in the Tournament of Champions, the FedEx St. Jude, and the RBC Canadian Open. Those aren’t exactly hallmark events.

Justin Rose won last year and checks in around +850 this week. The reigning FedEx Cup champ will also be teeing it up for the first time since the Ryder Cup. Rose was gassed at the end of the Ryder Cup after playing a ton of golf, including three straight top-five finishes in playoff events to win the $10 million. He was steady last year at Sheshan with a couple of 67s, a 68, and a 72. Perhaps he can follow Brooks Koepka, who was in strong form at the tail end of last season and rode that to a win in the CJ Cup. He’s a threat to win anywhere, as we know, but he isn’t really known for putting out low scores. He’s a really consistent player, so you will probably get a better price after the first round or going into the weekend.

Looking for back-to-back wins on the Asian swing, Brooks Koepka is in the ballpark of +900 this week. Koepka was one of three runners-up here last year, as he was in the same breath as DJ, Stenson, and Rose. Koepka opened with a 64, but had some tough holes over the weekend as he shot even par on Saturday and Sunday. Still, with his form, it’s hard to count him out of any event. He also seems dedicated to win non-majors this year, much like he did last week. Among the low prices, he’s not a bad bet.

Rory McIlroy was fourth here two years ago and he’s just shy of +1000. We really haven’t seen Rory shine in too many events lately, as some injuries have taken a bit of a toll on him. Given the strength of this field and some of the prices behind Rory, there are better options.

Hideki Matsuyama is +1500 this week. Matsuyama started slow last weekend in South Korea with a 71-74, but he finished on a high note with a 66 and a 69. He won this event two years ago. Given how Matsuyama played last year, with just four top-10 finishes and no top-threes, he’s a tough guy to take here. He’s just not in the same form. The same can probably be said of Jason Day at +1600. Tony Finau is an interesting name at +1600, but this doesn’t seem like his sort of course. It helps to hit the ball long, but it helps more to have a strong game on approach.

The next crop of players on the board are European Tour guys. Tommy Fleetwood is +1800, with Francesco Molinari at +2000, Jon Rahm at +2000, Paul Casey at +2500, and then Tyrrell Hatton at +3000. Those guys do seem to be getting quite a bit of respect on the board in the PGA Tour events that they have been playing. Obviously this is a co-sanctioned event, but the next American is Patrick Cantlay at +3300.

This is probably the week to look at a guy like Xander Schauffele. After running into prices around 25 or 30/1, he’s up to 60/1 now with the strength of this field and a couple lackluster showings to start the year. He plays his best when the lights are the brightest and when the fields are the strongest. Same player, different odds.

Another player worth consideration is Ian Poulter. He’s +4000, which isn’t an outstanding price, but he’s a past winner here in 2012 and was the runner-up in 2013. He hasn’t played here since 2015, when he finished T-30 at 8-under. He was sixth in 2014. This is a pretty good course for him and this is about the best form he’s been in for quite some time.

One other name to consider is Kyle Stanley at +6600. Stanley was fifth last year in his first start at Sheshan. He didn’t play well last week at the CJ Cup, but was 13th at the CIMB Classic. He had a couple of top-15 finishes in the playoffs and one of his runner-up finishes last year was in the WGC-Bridgestone. The other was at the Memorial, so he’s a guy to keep an eye on in big events. He also had an excellent run in the WGC-Match Play.

Coverage of the WGC-HSBC Champions will be only on Golf Channel this week with the big time difference.

Odds as of October 22, 3:30 p.m. ET

Dustin Johnson +770

Justin Rose +835

Brooks Koepka +860

Rory McIlroy +945

Hideki Matsuyama +1500

Jason Day +1600

Tony Finau +1600

Tommy Fleetwood +1800

Francesco Molinari +2000

Jon Rahm +2000

Paul Casey +2500

Tyrrell Hatton +3000

Rafa Cabrera-Bello +3300

Patrick Cantlay +3300

Alex Noren +3300

Patrick Reed +4000

Ian Poulter +4000

Matthew Fitzpatrick +5000

Adam Scott +5000

Cameron Smith +5000

Xander Schauffele +6000

Thorbjorn Olesen +6600

Kyle Stanley +6600

Keegan Bradley +6600

Haotong Li +6600

Byeong Hun An +6600

Eddie Pepperell +6600

Emiliano Grillo +6600

Billy Horschel +6600

Lucas Bjerregaard +8000

Russell Knox +8000

Thomas Pieters +9000

Brandt Snedeker +9000

Charley Hoffman +10000

Pat Perez +10000

Kevin Na +10000

C.T. Pan +10000

Kiradech Aphibarnrat +12500

Julian Suri +12500

Matt Wallace +12500

Chez Reavie +12500

Chris Wood +12500

Branden Grace +12500

Andy Sullivan +12500

Adam Hadwin +12500

Alexander Bjork +15000

Brian Harman +15000

Ryan Fox +15000

Shubhankar Sharma +15000

Brandon Stone +17500

Andrew Putnam +20000

Ashun Wu +20000

Alexander Levy +20000

Andrea Pavan +25000

George Coetzee +25000

Erik Van Rooyen +25000

Jorge Campillo +25000

Patton Kizzire +30000

Satoshi Kodaira +30000

Scott Vincent +35000

Adrian Otaegui +35000

Yuta Ikeda +40000

Justin Harding +40000

John Catlin +45000

Gaganjeet Bhullar +50000

Sihwan Kim +50000

Sanghyun Park +50000

J.C. Ritchie +60000

Yuki Inamori +75000

Wenchong Liang +100000

Xinjun Zhang +100000

Yanwei Liu +100000

Yechun Yuan +100000

Jason Norris +100000

Bowen Xiao +100000

Brett Rumford +100000

Adam Bland +100000

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