Hero World Challenge Betting Tips & Predictions – Thursday 29th November 2018

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson divided the world of golf with their lucrative exhibition game. The Match was written off by many as a crass money grab that had next to no real meaning. Those same criticisms have been levelled at the Hero World Challenge over the years but you’ll hear fewer people complaining about this elite, 18 man field who are playing with no cut and a winner’s prize of $1,000,000.

The Hero World Challenge is hosted by Tiger Woods and is held for the benefit of his charitable foundation. Last year it marked his return to competitive action which culminated in his win at the Tour Championship. Woods is one of the favourites to win this week but the best value may lie with Xander Schauffele at 18/1 with BetVictor.

Top Tips

Xander Schauffele @ 18/1

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Course Info

The Hero World Challenge comes at a time when many golfers have already put their clubs away for an extended break around the Christmas period. The decision to move the tournament to the Bahamas was made with the hope that it would attract some of the world’s biggest stars to compete and it’s had the desired effect.

The golf course at Albany is in an incredibly exclusive development on New Providence. It was designed by Ernie Els and is a relatively long par 72 at 7,302 yards but it’s hardly the toughest test of golf in the world. Players who score well on the par fives will have an edge as will those who can cope with blustery conditions as evidenced by Rickie Fowler’s win 12 months ago.

CourseLocationLengthPrize Money
Albany Golf Club New Providence in The Bahamas 7,302 Yards $3,500,000

Recent Winners

Scoring has been pretty good since the Hero World Challenge made the move to the Bahamas. The course isn’t exactly defenceless, especially when the wind blows, but we’re talking about a collection of the world’s best players on what is essentially a resort course. That said, Rickie Fowler, Hideki Matsuyama and Bubba Watson all played very well on the week they won to pull away from the competition.

Taking a longer term view and it is interesting how important incoming form has been to picking a winner of the Hero World Challenge. It’s an event which is open only to those who have played some good golf over the last year but still those in the midst of extended hot streaks are often able to separate themselves from the field.

YearWinnerCourseTo ParWinning Margin
2017 Rickie Fowler Albany Golf Club -18 4 Strokes
2016 Hideki Matsuyama Albany Golf Club -18 2 Strokes
2015 Bubba Watson Albany Golf Club -25 3 Strokes
2014 Jordan Spieth Isleworth Golf & Country Club -26 10 Strokes
2013 Zach Johnson Sherwood Country Club -13 Playoff

Analysis: Winner Will Need to Go Low Each Day

Playing professional golf tournaments on high-scoring courses is not as easy as it may first look. It can be a real grind having to pick up birdies on all four days and many players have struggled to cope with the mental challenge posed by the relentless number of birdies being racked up by the rest of the field. It therefore takes a combination of technical brilliance and mental fortitude to do enough to outscore such a high calibre of opponent and win the Hero World Challenge.

Schauffele Ready for Another Big Time Performance

Xander Schauffele is one of the big breakthrough players of the last couple of years in the world of golf. That the American is making waves both on the PGA Tour and European Tour is one thing but it’s the fact that he’s done things his own way that’s most impressive. At 5ft 10in, Schauffele isn’t short by normal standards but he is shorter than most of the powerful young players who continue to make their way into the professional ranks. At the same time, a host of older players who reached the pinnacle of the game are finding that their lack of distance means they simply cannot compete at some tournaments so it is testament to Schauffele that he has made the most of his frame and his talent to be on the cusp of breaking into the world’s top 10.

The other thing that stands out about Schauffele is the way that he looks so at home no matter what the situation. He’s contended at majors, played well with some of the biggest stars in the sport and bounced back from some crushing near misses. He will have no problem bringing his best game to Albany and should rightly feel at home amongst the big stars on show. Winning may be a tough ask but Schauffele is up to it and is available at generous odds of 18/1 with BetVictor.

Bubba to Enjoy His Return to Albany

Bubba Watson wasted no time getting to grips with Albany. He won the first edition of the Hero World Challenge to be held in the Bahamas and will relish the chance to return to New Providence after what he’ll view as a very good season. After struggling badly with his game following an ill-advised ball change, Watson rediscovered some of his best golf this year and won three times. That was enough to get him a spot in the Ryder Cup and a place at the Hero World Challenge. He’ll hope the latter goes better than the former and will surely enjoy the chance to play in an almost strangely laid back atmosphere for a PGA Tour event.

Watson is shedding some of the reputation he garnered for being a prickly character and should be a fun playing partner with whomever he goes round with at Albany. As ever, he’ll wow his partner with some trademark ‘Bubba Golf’ shots and could string four rounds together of sufficient class to win this tournament again at 28/1 with Ladbrokes.

Final Verdict: Xander Schauffele to Win

The nature of the Hero World Challenge means that any of the players in the field have a real chance of winning. That throws up some very good value options in the betting but has any player been so overlooked by the market as Xander Schauffele at 18/1 with BetVictor?

About

Based in the Bahamas, the Hero World Challenge is the smallest field of any PGA Tour event, with just 18 players in total. These are made up of the 11 top ranked players in the world, the defending champion and then the remaining players are picked via the foundation.

The foundation, funnily enough, is that of Tiger Woods' Foundation, who plays a major role as tournament host. Whilst not officially part of the official money list for the PGA Tour, the Hero World Challenge does offer up World Ranking points and more often than not includes the tournaments host, Tiger Woods. What's unique about the event is that the prize money of around $3.5million is equal to that of some strokeplay events that have fields of over 150. The winner takes home a cheque of $1million for their work.

There is no doubt that it's been Tiger Woods that has made many of the headlines at the Hero world Challenge since it started in 2000. He's won on 5 different occasions and one of just three players to have recorded multiple wins (Graeme McDowell, 2 and Davis Love II, 2).

In more recent years, it's been Woods who has been stealing the limelight again. He's targeted the tournament numerous times after recovering from a plaguing back injury, with 2016 seeing him finish second from last, but a resurgence Woods challenged for the win just a year later, falling short after the final round.

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