Fantasy Golf Picks, Odds, and Predictions for the Hero World Challenge
2018 Hero World Challenge Fantasy Preview
It’s been a madcap few weeks in the world of golf.
After the Kuchar-Westwood double, it was another old-timer – Charles Howell III – who showed once more that an old dog can teach a younger mutt a thing or two.
He triumphed in a playoff against Patrick Rodgers at the RSM Classic; his first win in more than eleven years!
If these old guys keep on winning PGA TOUR events the Golden Bear himself might be tempted to get the clubs out of storage….
Elsewhere, Phil Mickelson triumphed by one shot in ‘The Match.’ It’s been a year of PR disaster for Lefty, who followed up his controversy at the US Open with *that* internet-breaking, dad-dancing video for Mizzen+Main.
Still, with nine million bucks in his pockets, Phil probably won’t give a hoot.
And finally last week, Belgium were crowned world champions after reigning victorious in the ISPS Handa World Cup of Golf.
It’s been a thrill-packed couple of weeks that doesn’t exactly give the impression that golf is winding down for the holidays but it is, and the players will have one final chance for glory at this week’s Hero World Challenge.
Tiger Woods plays a shot during the Pro-Am Tournament for The Match: Tiger vs Phil at Shadow Creek Golf Course on November 24, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Get premium, high resolution news photos at Getty Images
Last Week’s Fantasy Results
What a solid week for Charles Howell III. Although we opted for Champ (T6) over Howell, we’re happy for the veteran.
With CHIII’s unexpected win the RSM wasn’t particularly friendly to fantasy rosters. Time to switch the strategy up to a “micro” field format to rebound from last week.
Charles Howell III of the United States poses with the trophy after winning the RSM Classic at the Sea Island Golf Club Seaside Course on November 18, 2018 in St. Simons Island, Georgia. Get premium, high resolution news photos at Getty Images
The 2018 Hero World Challenge Field
Carefully selected on the basis of performance in 2018, most of the great and the good of world golf are heading for the Bahamas this week.
It’s a field which contains six of the world’s top 10 (Rose, Johnson. D, Thomas, DeChambeau, Rahm and Fowler), and a further eight from those ranked 11-20 (Woods, Day, Finau, Schauffele, Reed, Watson, Noren and Cantlay).
The rest of the field features former Hero World Challenge winner Hideki Matsuyama, Henrik Stenson, Keegan Bradley and Gary Woodland.
This Week’s Course Preview
You’re on a slice of paradise in the Atlantic Ocean, with Thanksgiving in the rear-view mirror and Christmas just up ahead.
Yep, the Albany course on New Providence Island is as friendly as golf gets.
The holiday atmosphere will be enhanced by this 7,400 yard long Par 72, which features five Par 5s and a quintet of Par 3s.
It was designed by the Ernie Els team – not the great man himself though, and they have modeled it on some of the classic sandbelt courses in Australia. It’s exposed with minimal tree coverage, and has a Links-style feel; aided and abetted by that coastal location.
There’s lots of sand – and sand dunes, but really if the wind doesn’t blow this is about as enjoyable a place to play your golf as you are likely to find.
The designer, Greg Letsche, has said he had Royal Birkdale and the Els Club in Dubai in mind when coming up with this layout, and there are certain similarities – even if this track is much easier to tame.
Tiger Woods of the United States looks on during the trophy ceremony of the Hero World Challenge at Albany, Bahamas on December 3, 2017 in Nassau, Bahamas. Get premium, high resolution news photos at Getty Images
Weather Forecast for New Providence, Bahamas
If you’re looking for some winter sun, then the Bahamas is an island that is typically good value.
But you’ll get plenty of wind too….the forecast expects in excess of 18 mph on Wednesday!
Happily, Thursday is expected to be a lot calmer, with warm sunshine and win speeds of around 6 mph.
But then it starts to get a bit tasty on Friday. Temperatures are agreeable enough at 78 degrees, but wind speeds are up to 15 mph, while on Saturday there’s scattered rain showers forecast and winds touching 18 mph.
Sunday should be warm (84 degrees), with the breezy slowing slightly to around the 12 mph mark.
Last Year’s Results from the Hero World Challenge
He’s not someone who can be labelled as a prolific winner when considering his undoubted ability, but boy did Rickie Fowler make it pay in this event 12 months ago.
You can imagine Rickie enjoying the festival atmosphere and holiday-style ambiance on the island, and maybe that’s where he found the motivation to rattle in a final round of 61 to smash his way through the field and win by four from Charley Hoffman.
Incredibly, he was seven adrift of Hoffman heading into the final round, but the Texan just couldn’t get his game together on the Sunday. Try as he might, the Hoff could only play the back nine in level par to drift out of the reckoning.
To be honest, nobody else got close to winning the thing, with Jordan Spieth and Tommy Fleetwood six adrift of Fowler in T3 and Hideki Matsuyama, Patrick Reed and Justin Rose seven behind in T5.
Rickie Fowler of the United States poses with the trophy after winning the Hero World Challenge at Albany, Bahamas on December 3, 2017 in Nassau, Bahamas. Get premium, high resolution news photos at Getty Images
Where to Play Fantasy Golf for the Hero World Challenge this Week
There’s two ways of looking at it. The first is that this will be the last time you get to play PGA TOUR based DFS in 2018….it’s going to be a long, fallow month!
So, you can either dip your bread with some big money contests, or understand that an 18-field tournament gives you practically zero margin for error and you may end up sharing cash prizes anyway. The choice is yours….
- PGA $125k Drive the Green: If you plan on going out with a bang, here’s your big money option. For $5 entry (150 team multi entry), you could win a cool $25k for your troubles.
- PGA $5k Caddie: If you are simply drafting a line-up to have some skin in the game, try this $5 single entry contest that has a jackpot of $500. At least the single entry gives you a chance of some variance!
This Week’s Fantasy Notes for the Hero World Challenge
It seems that form in the wind is key in the Hero World Challenge.
Many have Rickie Fowler pegged as a British Open champion in the making, and he has previously won on the Scottish Links on the European Tour.
Hideki Matsuyama too is a noted wind player, while the top-five on the leaderboard has also included two British Open champions (Spieth and Stenson) and a man who could have lifted the famous trophy (Matt Kuchar).
The stats from last year’s event are slightly confusing, as Fowler and Hoffman found lots of fairways (ranking fifth and third respectively for Driving Accuracy), were pretty much off with their irons (14th and 16th) before scrambling and putting their way to the top of the leaderboard.
But then, Fleetwood and Spieth ranked first and second for Greens in Regulation, and they ended up in T3 on the leaderboard. Perhaps it’s one of those weeks not to get too hung up on the stats.
We have to try and gauge motivation levels too. Who is ready for a well-earned rest, and is simply in the Bahamas for a paycheck and a suntan? Who still has that hunger to go win a golf tournament?
Basically, we’re looking for a strong wind player who really wants to go and win this event while others are already in holiday mode.
Our Top 5 (and Top 2 Sleeper) Fantasy Picks and Odds to Win the Hero World Challenge
You must be a Premium Member to view our exclusive fantasy golf picks.
Already a member? Sign in Here.
Fantasy Golf Predictions This Season (2018-2019)
Total Top 3s
Total Top 10s
Total Top 25s
Total Winners Picked
Total Runners-Up Picked
Total Made Cuts (Includes Sleepers)
Cover Photo via Instagram