2019 WCG Match Play and Corales Puntacana Championship DFS Preview

Due to the WCG Match Play and Alternate Field event, I’ll be doing something different with the article this week, including publishing a day early to accommodate the Wednesday start of the Dell. Because of this, along with the two events, I won’t be going into as much detail as I usually do but will still aim to provide a rundown of what you’ll need to know for each event in order to get off to a good start in your DFS golf contests this week. For the purposes of this article I’ll focus on cash game strategy for the Puntacana event and GPP strategy for the Dell Match Play.

WCG Dell Match Play

Course: Austin Country Club (Par 71)

Greens: Bermuda

Other Course/Field Notes: This is a Pete Dye design that stays true to many of the attributes the architect is known for. Off the tee placement is key and players must be able to navigate hazards en route to smaller than average sized greens. The course makes its way up and down the hilly terrain surrounding Lake Austin. Water comes into play on several holes and on others players who miss their target off the tee could find themselves in recovery mode and likely a lost hole. There are a couple drivable par fours where the bombers can cut loose but the course is similar to TPC Sawgrass in that any type of player can be successful as evidenced by last year’s final between Kevin Kisner and Bubba Watson.

Format: The 64 players will be grouped into 16 groups of four for round robin play with the winner of each group based on best record in group play will advance to single elimination play until a champion is crowned.

DFS Contests: Scoring on DraftKings will be different this week as fantasy points will be awarded based on holes and matches won/lost as opposed to hole by hole scores and finishing position. All players are guaranteed three rounds of competition; however, scoring is strongly skewed towards those who advance as there is a possibility to receive points in up to seven rounds of competition if you roster one of the final four remaining players. In contest selection for the WGC event it makes the most sense to target GPPs instead of cash games on DraftKings as early exits are common and having multiple players who do not survive pool play will sink your lineups. When building rosters, it is important not to target too many players in the same quadrant of the bracket as to take down a large GPP you’ll likely need predict the final four or something close to it. That said, here are my GPP favorite plays from each quadrant:

Top Left Quadrant:

Hideki Matsuyama – If Hideki can survive DJ in group play his path to the final four appears to face the least competitive route in terms of OWGR and current form. This scenario also provides great leverage against DJ as he will likely be very highly owned due to strong current form and his status as World #1

Bottom Left Quadrant:

Tiger Woods – Its been a while since we’ve seen Tiger at the WCG Match Play but we can’t forget how he has dominated this event over the years. The intimidation factor is not what it was but his recovery and short game has the potential to help Tiger survive and advance by wearing down an opponent that believes they may have him on the ropes.  

Top Right Quadrant:

Paul Casey – The top right quadrant looks to me to be the most difficult to predict a winner from as I can make a strong case for several players including a few dark horses. From this group Casey will likely be my highest own pick from this part of the bracket. This was his first start last year after winning the Valspar and he performed well, losing to Kyle Stanley in a sudden death playoff to move on from the group stage.

Bottom Right Quadrant:

Tony Finau – He proved himself in match play as one of the only bright spots on the 2018 US Ryder Cup team. A strong finish last time out at the PLAYERS shows he has what it takes to navigate his way around a Pete Dye course. He also makes a ton a birdies, which is always a good thing in match play.

Puntacana Resort and Club Championship

Course: Corales Puntacana Resort and Club (Par 72, 7,690 yards)

Greens: Paspalum

Fairways: Easy to Hit (73% historical vs. 61% avg tour event)

Rough: Short in length, scrambling easier than avg tour event

Other Course/Field Notes: This is the second year this course will host an event on the PGA Tour, it had hosted a Web.com event prior so Web grads have likely seen it more than once. At nearly 7,770 the course is the second longest on Tour after Torrey Pines. Keep an eye on the weather as this is an exposed coastal course where wind is likely to play a factor. The course has four par fives and four par threes over 200 yards, long iron play is of extreme importance this week and will be the highest weighted stat for me this week. With easy to hit fairways on a long course, this is a great week to target bombers. As the field is weak due to this event being alternate the WCG I will be reducing my bankroll exposure in cash games.

Cash Game / Single Entry GPP Picks for Corales:

High-End – Trey Mullinax – $9,500

Trey Mullinax fits the bomber narrative well and has shown some success at Corales with a 22nd place finish last year and an 11th place finish at the Web.com event in 2016. He’s shown some improvement in his approach game so far this season and is in the top 25% of the field in proximity from 175 yards and out.

Upper Mid-Range – Joel Dahmen – $9,100

After a string of missed cuts, Joel Dahmen appears to be rounding into form with a 12th place finish at the PLAYERS and a 30th at Valspar where he was near the top of the leaderboard on Thursday and Friday. He hasn’t able to close it out over the weekend but did recover nicely on Sunday after a poor Saturday round. He’s not known as a bomber but makes up for it with a very solid approach game and has posted top 20 finishes in his last two trips to Corales.

Value – Adam Schenk – $7,400

He missed the cut on the number last week at Valspar but has been playing well with top 30 finishes in the three events prior. Despite the missed cut he still gained 2.5 stokes on approach last week and played well on Friday, shooting under in tough conditions. His recent track record in the Caribbean is good with a 16th at this year’s Puerto Rico Open and a 35th at this event last year.

How we did last week:

Cash/Single Entry Article Plays:

Webb Simpson – MC

Jason Kokrak – T2

Henrik Stenson – T24

Optimal Sports Subscribers Core Plays:

Jason Kokrak – T2

Henrik Stenson – T24

Sergio Garcia – T54

Adam Schenk – MC

Sungjae Im – T4

Zach Johnson – T24

Last Week’s DraftKings Double Up Contest Result: Win

2018-2019 Season Double Up Record: 14-6

Record in Double Ups Since 1/1/18: 39-16

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