Pebble Beach Pro-Am 2014
The PGA Tour visits one of its most famous venues this week for the Pebble Beach Pro-Am in California. The tournament has been won 4 times by Phil Mickelson, but the defending champion is Brandt Snedeker. Coverage begins on Sky Sports 4 on Thursday at 8pm.
The tournament is played over three courses - the Pebble Beach Links, Spyglass Hill and Monterrey - with the cut coming after 54 holes instead of the usual 36 and the final round played at Pebble Beach. Snedeker set a record low total of 267 when he won last year to succeed Mickelson as champion, but another notable former winner is Dustin Johnson, who took the title in both 2009 and 2010.
Johnson also posted a top five finish here two years ago so he has to be taken seriously at a venue where he will be full of confidence, particularly after tying for sixth place on his only 2014 outing to date. He's one of three market leaders, alongside Mickelson and Jason Day, at best odds of 14/1 with Sky Bet, BetVictor and Stan James.
Defending champion Snedeker is as short as 25/1 in places but can be backed at 40/1 with Stan James, while rising star Jordan Spieth is also a 25/1 shot with Ladbrokes.
Last week's Phoenix Open was won by Kevin Stadler, who came through late on to claim his first PGA Tour title. That sets him up nicely for another challenge at Pebble Beach, where he has played well in the last couple of years, finishing in a share of third place last year. Ladbrokes look to be taking a chance by going as big as 50/1.
One of the men Stadler shared third place with last time around was Jimmy Walker, the current leader of the Fed-Ex Cup standings. Walker's record here is impressive, with top 10 finishes on each of his last three appearances and he can be backed at 28/1 with Stan James or 25/1 with Paddy Power - who are the only firm paying 6 places for each-way bets.
Another man who can boast a good record here is Australia's Aaron Baddeley, who has missed the cut only once in his last five appearances and finished no worse than 19th on the other four. His last three outings here have produced sixth, fourth and 12th place finishes and as a course specialist he shouldn’t be priced as big as 110/1 with Stan James - Coral’s 66/1 looks a truer reflection of his chances.
Hunter Mahan was one of our selections at last week's Phoenix Open and repaid us with a top 5 finish and we're going to stick with him this week. Mahan finished as runner-up to DA Points here in 2011 and has shared 15th and 17th on his two subsequent visits. That record suggests he can be in the mix once again and he’s 20/1 with Coral and Ladbrokes.
|Hunter Mahan||Tournament Winner
||Coral & Ladbrokes|
|Jimmy Walker||Tournament Winner||28/1||Stan James|
|Aaron Baddeley||Tournament Winner||110/1||Stan James