EPGA CHAMPIONSHIP PICKS

Alex Noren to win +11000
Alex Noren Top-5 +2000

Let’s just start off with the outright because you all knew that was coming. For the matchups, I had an insane amount leans this week for a thirty cent line European Tour tournament, albeit the biggest one. So, I asked the ML what he thought. The results were very encouraging, because A) ML hasn’t disappeared and B) I haven’t gone completely crazy in my thinking on golf.

Here were my pre-tournament leans:

Kjeldsen -110 over Dougherty
Luke Donald +100 over Angel Cabrera*
Lee Westwood -105 over Els
Karlsson -105 over Goosen
Jeev +100 over Molinari
Darren Clarke +105 over GFC
Gareth Maybin -105 over David Horsey
Randhawa over Martin Lafebar

If I had to order them, they would be:
Donald**

Karlsson
Westwood
Kjeldsen
Clarke
Jeev
Maybin
Randhawa

As, ML said, and I initially thought, Donald is an obvious play. Randhawa and Maybin are just opinionated stretches. The real question for me, is where does the comfortable cutoff line fall with those matchups.

Jeev has certainly been the better player over what I have recorded than Molinari and Molinari is on fire right now, but does that carry out going forward? I’m not sure, but with a hot hand and a bigger ceiling Molinari is probably better going forward. It’s not like Jeev is the Robert Allenby of Asia, he has won plenty of tournaments in his day.

Clarke is incredibly tempting with the +105. When I look more into this, this looks like a match-up of two guys whose career arcs are going in different directions. GFC and Clarke are basically equal players at the moment, but it is easy to think that Clarke will never be as good his 3 second place finishes on the Order of Merit from 1998-2003. GFC on the other hand, at age 28, is a guy that could be moving into the top-10 going forward. When I look at just the past year in my rankings GFC would definitely be the favorite, this is for sure a pass.

Kjeldsen seems to be a worse off play than Westwood just slightly. For one Kjeldsen posted a top-10 finish here last season and has played pretty well this season. Dougherty is a nice young player, but I have never understood the attraction to him. Part of this might seem a little too easy, though. My numbers are pretty good for this

I think Karlsson is a play, so I need to take a look at Westwood looks like for this one. Certainly Els is overrated, but he actually shows pretty favorable in my yearly rankings. He is worse than Westwood, but Westwood has played more rounds on the Euro Tour which would bump him down a little bit, since those don’t account for tour. In that case it seems like that is definitely a worse play than Kjeldsen. That’s fine, but it still leaves me with the Soren dilemma. I have proof that Soren is the better player on several metrics, Dougherty is a guy I’ve always thought is overrated and he finished fourth last week. I think that is enough to make the cut.

MATCH-UPS(4rds)
Donald +100 over Cabrera(4)
Karlsson -105 over Goosen(1)
Kjeldsen -110 over Dougherty(1)

First Round
Luke Donald -105 over Angel Cabrera(2)
Karlsson -110 over Goosen (1)

Good luck. I may add a few threesome plays in later tonight if they put the lines up. Back with the PGA Tour later.

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