2021 Zozo Championship: Odds Preview

2021 Zozo Championship- Odds Preview

Setting the scene

When the 2021 Zozo Championship begins Thursday at Narashino Country Club, many of the PGA Tour’s greatest golfers will be playing in Japan for the first time in two years. Because of the pandemic, the event was staged at Sherwood Country Club in California last year. Now it’s back to the course outside of Tokyo, where Tiger Woods tied Sam Snead for the most PGA Tour victories with 82 in 2019. The highest-ranked golfer slated to compete is Collin Morikawa. He is ranked No. 3 in the world, with Olympic gold medalist Xander Schauffele and local idol Hideki Matsuyama among the other famous names in the 2021 Zozo Championship field.

The tournament will be played in front of a field of 78 outstanding players. When the tournament was held in California last year, Patrick Cantlay was the titleholder. That’s not surprising, considering he won four times in the 2020-2021 wraparound season, including the final two FedEx Cup playoff events. He isn’t in the field this year, though. While travel limitations may prevent a couple of the big players from attending, the prize pool is nearly $10 million, and this is the sole trip to Japan this wraparound season.

Betting Angles

We’ve only seen one edition of the tournament held at Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club. It doesn’t employ ShotLink data like other North American and European locations, so handicappers don’t have as much information to go on when picking who to bet on. We do know, however, that the course is a typical Japanese course. The fairways are narrow and tree-lined, requiring golfers to be exceptionally precise off the tee. It will encourage golfers to concentrate on their tee-to-green skills rather than their short game. It is a Par 70 course that measures just under 7,100 yards, although it is laid up differently than most Par 70s.

Therefore, we’re basing our picks primarily on recent results, focusing on the par-3 scoring from last season. This is a par-70 course with five par 3s, which is unusual for a par-70 course. When Woods won the 2019 ZOZO at 19-under for the week, he didn’t make a bogey on any par 3s and played them eight-under for the week.

The Top 10 in 2019 was primarily made up of players who had driving accuracies that were substantially above average for the week. Only Sungjae Im (usually a very accurate player) and Byeong Hun An (typically a very precise player) finished in the back half of the field in driving accuracy. Players in the Top 10 were either extremely accurate or extremely efficient drives.

Because the ZOZO Championship has no cut, an aggressive strategy is essential. However, intelligent course management will be crucial, as will precision off the tee. This week’s scoring levels will be determined by how punitive the fairway rough is and, more significantly, how smooth and fast the undulating greens are. Players who hit full shots while maintaining a good sense of distance and accuracy will do well.

Horses for courses

Another look at the Accordia Golf course from the 2019 Japan Skins

Shinya Fujita built the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club, which opened in 1965. The golf course for this week’s competition is a 7,041-yard Par 70 layout. It has five Par 3s and three Par 5s, which is unique for a Par 70 course. The tight, tree-lined fairways at Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club make club selection from the tee a crucial game component. In addition, several of the holes are doglegged, necessitating the ability to shape the ball in both directions. Like many others in Japan, the host course was created with two greens to help with wear and tear.

The greens are modest in size by Tour standards, with plenty of slope and undulation. Bunkers and trees provide additional protection. On many of the holes, putts will be quick and tricky. The layout necessitates accuracy and rewards ball-strikers. There is some elevation change, and finding the challenging green complexes will require various approach shots. On the surface, this appears to be a week in which accuracy will triumph over strength.

Where’s the money?

Let’s now look at the betting for the week ahead:

Collin Morikawa 13-2
Xander Schauffele 13-2
Hideki Matsuyama 16-1
Paul Casey 18-1
Will Zalatoris 18-1
Tommy Fleetwood 25-1
Joaquin Niemann 28-1
Cameron Tringale 30-1
Rickie Fowler 30-1
Keegan Bradley 35-1
Alex Noren 35-1
Maverick McNealy 35-1
Si-Woo Kim 35-1
Emiliano Grillo 40-1
Jhonattan Vegas 40-1
C.T. Pan 40-1
Erik Van Rooyen 40-1
Charley Hoffman 40-1
Branden Grace 50-1
Lanto Griffin 50-1
Carlos Ortiz 50-1
Adam Schenk 50-1
Kyoung-Hoon Lee 50-1
Matt Wallace 50-1
MacKenzie Hughes 50-1
Chris Kirk 50-1
Takumi Kanaya 50-1
Ryan Palmer 50-1
Luke List 60-1
Harry Higgs 66-1
Garrick Higgo 66-1
Sebastian Munoz 66-1
Brendan Steele 66-1
Henrik Norlander 66-1
Brendon Todd 66-1
Doug Ghim 66-1
Roger Sloan 80-1
Matt Jones 80-1
Robert Streb 80-1
Pat Perez 80-1
Tom Hoge 80-1
Chan Kim 80-1
Troy Merritt 100-1
Andrew Putnam 100-1
Scott Vincent 100-1
Doc Redman 125-1
Matthew NeSmith 125-1
Sepp Straka 125-1
Chesson Hadley 125-1
Kyle Stanley 125-1
Sung-Hoon Kang 125-1
Jimmy Walker 150-1
Brandon Hagy 150-1
Adam Long 150-1
Shugo Imahira 150-1
Wyndham Clark 150-1
Sam Ryder 150-1
Ryosuke Kinoshita 150-1
Satoshi Kodaira 150-1
Peter Malnati 150-1
James Hahn 200-1
Tomoharu Otsuki 200-1
Hiroshi Iwata 200-1
Kramer Hickok 200-1
Rikuya Hoshino 200-1
Jinichiro Kozuma 200-1
Keita Nakajima 200-1
Kazuki Higa 250-1
Ryo Hisatsune 250-1
Wesley Bryan 250-1
Tyler McCumber 250-1
Ryutaro Nagano 300-1
Tomoyasu Sugiyama 300-1
Naoto Nakanishi 400-1
Ryuichi Oiwa 400-1
Naoyuki Kataoka 400-1
Bill Haas 400-1
Ryuji Imada 500-1

About the author:

Freelance Sports Writer | + posts

Hey Guys

My name is Dean, AKA The Stat Man. I am a Sports Betting Analyst who uses math, algorithms, probability and logic to create my posts. I specialize in many sports, with Golf being the primary focus. You can find a lot of my work on various websites but the best content is found here on Beer Life.

I live in the UK, on the outskirts of London but my background and heritage is Irish. I'm an avid Manchester United fan who sees following them as a religion. Sport is pretty much my life, as I live and breathe it daily. If there is something I don't know it's probably not worth knowing as I have over 20 years industry experience and insight.

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