Welcome to the Golf Betting Club RBC Heritage In-Play Betting Blog. Betting advice will be given during the tournament but check out our event preview and watchlist here.
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21st June 2020
Once again Harbour Town showed that it is a tough course to lead from the front as Bryson Dechambeau stuttered and Webb Simpson could only manage to cling on to a share of the lead. Perfect golfing conditions early on meant for low scoring with six players inside the current top 10 shooting 63 or better. The wind picked up just enough in the afternoon to make it trickier and as we've seen every day, less putts were dropping in the afternoon. We're in for much of the same today with the wind due to be slightly stronger.
With 15 players within two shots of the lead, it is very hard to call now. Webb Simpson remains favourite but his lead is looking less secure and he offers no value at 9/2. One of those 63's yesterday came from GBC's one to watch, Tyrrell Hatton, who is aiming to make it 3 wins in his last 5 starts. He has self admittedly been quite reliant on his short game this week but he has been excellent in the mix recently and could go on to win. It is hard to fancy Ryan Palmer who is better at chasing rather than leading.
Our halfway sole outright tip Abraham Ancer has joined the lead and it seems like he has hardly holed a putt. He has hit over 80% greens in regulation every day this week and is the man to beat stats wise. He is ranked 1st SG: Total, 2nd SG: Tee to green and 1st GIR. If the wind picks up that should suit him too.
However, we must advise caution with the leaders. As put in our event preview, "Round 3 leaders have a very poor record here in recent years and there have been some stunning wins from players off the pace. The last seven winners have come from at least 2 shots back, and in six of those years the winner came from three shots back. Even more impressively, in 2018 and 2011 Kodaira and Brand Snedeker came from six shots back, while in 2004 Stewart Cink overturned a NINE shot deficit."
These three victories suggest it is not entirely impossible that someone from -9 could go low before the wind picks up and hold on, similar to Hatton's move yesterday. This brings a host of big names into it; Thomas and Rahm at -9, Mcllroy at -10 and Dechambeau, Koepka and DJ at -12. With that said, they would probably need to get to -19 or -20 to be in with a chance. DJ and Koepka fit the trend of six of the last seven winners coming from 3 shots back and they play together today so it is likely one of them will be in the mix at some point.
0.25pts Sergio Garcia to win - 35/1 Betfair Exchange
With Ancer right in this, and the reasons mentioned above, we are more than happy to let it play out hoping his game holds up to the test. However, we couldn't resist a small win only bet on Sergio Garcia at such big odds two shots off the lead. Sergio's putting remains a concern and he should have had a share of the lead if he didn't miss two putts of inside 5 feet on his back 9 yesterday. However he is 1st for SG: Tee to green so if he can just hole one or two more tomorrow he should have a great chance. We also have a sneaky suspicion that the news of his good friend Nick Watney testing positive for Covid-19 could give him a sense of perspective and help him relax a bit under pressure. Sergio was in close contact with Watney prior to him testing positive but after a nervous wait got the all clear to carry on this weekend. It just fits the narrative too well!
20th June 2020
As predicted, yesterday's morning starters gained a significant advantage with the wind once again picking up in the afternoon. One of them, Webb Simpson, leads at the way at the halfway point and ominously he tops the PGA Tour round 3 scoring average. However, with over 20 players within 4 shots of the lead going into the weekend, and this tournament having a history of players coming from well behind, there's plenty to play for.
In the last five editions of this tournament, the winner has come from an average of four shots back.
Yesterday was significant as Nick Watney became the first PGA Tour player to test positive for Covid-19. He was playing with Vaughn Taylor and Luke List in the first round, and time will tell whether the virus spreads to other players.
We saw success with our 2 ball bet as Harris English comfortably beat Byeong Hun An by 4 shots.
We were unlucky with our bogey free round bets. There were 7 among the top 44 but unfortunately, none of our four selections. Our main 2nd round leader bet, Dylan Frittelli, also narrowly missed out on the each way places.
1 pt ew (1/5 1,2,3,4,5) Abraham Ancer - 25/1 @ Boylesports
Abraham is nicely positioned to make a run over the weekend. He's only had one bogey so far and ranks 7th in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green. His round 3 and 4 scoring averages are solid (28th and 15th).
If he can continue rolling in the putts as he did yesterday he has every chance this weekend. Let's hope his quote from yesterday sees him hole a few more over the weekend,
"I'm striking it well, and I'm rolling it good. It's just a matter of time until they fall in."
2 pts Abraham Ancer Top 10 finish - 7/4 @ Skybet
For much the same reasons as above, we feel Abraham is a sound bet for a top 10 finish. He is as low as 11/10 at William Hill for the same bet, so the 7/4 on offer at Skybet represents value and offers us an insurance policy should he continue to play well but not quite get the putter going.
2pts Tony Finau Top 10 Finish - 2/1 @ Skybet
If Tony had not played the first and second holes so poorly this week he would have been at the top of the leaderboard. Over the first two days he's played these holes in 1 over par when both are playing under par. The second hole in particular is playing as the easiest hole on the course so Tony can be expected to improve here. He is playing well this week, ranking 8th in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green so there is no reason he can't kick on and move up the leaderboard today.
2pts Matt Wallace to beat Mark Hubbard - 11/10 @ 888 Sport
Matt has consistent long game stats ranking 17th Strokes Gained: Tee to Green, whilst Mark ranks 59th in that category. Mark said he was hitting it "horribly" last week and only scored well as he "chipped and putted my face off." He had a good opening 18 holes here but yesterday's over par round may indicate he is back to hitting it horribly.
Matt is a progressive player who can win this two ball.
1.5pts Bubba Watson to beat Rory McIlroy - 9/4 @ Betfair
1.5pts Michael Thompson to beat Ernie Els - Evens @ Betfair
Our final two bets are strong value plays. Bubba has gone along nicely over the first two days and on a course that requires shot making, nobody likes to shape the ball more than Bubba. Rory played terribly the first day and whilst he scored well yesterday, he still only hit 10 greens in regulation. With a bit of rain forecast today to level this out, Bubba shouldn't be 9/4.
Ernie has relied on a hot putter the first two days here and we are happy to oppose him against Michael Thompson who has played solidly the first two days. Michael and his wife adopted a daughter in April, and he finished 10th here last year, so there's a lot to like about even money to beat Els when he's as low as 4/6 elsewhere.
19th June 2020
It's a bunched field after Round 1. The wind offered little challenge and scoring was generally good with Ian Poulter and Mark Hubbard leading the way at 7 under.
Nine of the top 15 on the leaderboard were morning starters. Several players commented on the greens spiking up in the afternoon, so we'll look for morning players today predominantly.
We should also remember that winners here often come from off the pace and don't need to be up with the leaders after round 1. C.T. Pan was level par last year and 6 behind; Satoshi Kodaira was 9 back after round 1 in 2018.
It was a good start for our only two pre-event bets as Matthew NeSmith recorded a 5 under 66 and Kevin Kisner a solid 68. We'll keep an eye on them as the tournament progresses.
1pt Webb Simpson Bogey Free Round - 16/1 @ Skybet
1pt Bryson DeChambeau Bogey Free Round - 12/1 @ Skybet
0.5pt Matt Kuchar Bogey Free Round - 18/1 @ Skybet
0.5pt Gary Woodland Bogey Free Round - 18/1 Skybet
Out of the top 44 players, nine had bogey free rounds in Round 1. With similar conditions expected we consider the above bogey free bets with Skybet to represent excellent value. All four selections are early starters, so will have the least wind to contend with.
Simpson and DeChambeau are our strongest selections given Webb ranks 1st for bogey avoidance on Tour and Bryson 4th. Yesterday DeChambeau had no bogeys and Simpson only one. They also rank joint first for Round 2 scoring average. Long game stats for both were sound yesterday also.
We also like Matt Kuchar and Gary Woodland but only at 0.5pts each. Matt has an excellent record here, made only one bogey yesterday, and will now be out in the best conditions. Gary had three bogeys on his card yesterday but ranks 3rd on Tour in both bogey avoidance and Round 2 scoring average.
2pts Harris English to beat Byeong Hun An (Mythical 2 ball) - 21/20 @ Skybet
Harris won this contest yesterday by 7 shots so this bet represents excellent value again today. He has the far superior record here, having recorded a top 25 last year and was 8th in 2012. An has a solitary missed cut in 2019. Harris had far superior stats yesterday and we'd expect him to prevail again today.
1 pt ew (1/4 1,2,3,4,5) Dylan Fritelli 2nd Round Leader - 28/1 Bet365
Dylan has an early tee time and is a solid round 2 performer. He had a very consistent day yesterday, saying after his round, "Really nice and consistent. Pretty much everything in my game was solid today and really look forward to maintaining that throughout the week."
He's only one shot off the pace and is as low as 16/1 at other firms. 28/1 with top 5 places on offer represents value.
0.5 pt ew (1/4 1,2,3,4,5) Brice Garnett 2nd Round Leader - 35/1 Bet365
Like Dylan, Brice has an early Round 2 tee time. He only made one bogey yesterday and was solid with his irons. Had a couple of top 20 finishes immediately before the long break and he has a solid, if unspectacular, record here.
0.5 pts win only Ryan Palmer 2nd Round Leader - 20/1 Boylesports
Ryan is another with an early tee time. He has an excellent round two scoring average, ranking 17th, and two top 30 finishes in his last two starts here. The each way terms aren't favourable at Boylesports so he is a small bet win only.