Get set for one of the most raucous events of the year on the PGA Tour calendar, as the Waste Management Phoenix Open takes place in front of half a million fans at TPC Scottsdale. The tournament features the infamous par-3 16th, where the boozy crowd heckle as well as cheer as golfers perform in a man-made amphitheatre.
It’s an event made for those that enjoy the highly charged atmosphere and few like being the centre of attention as much as Rickie Fowler. We tipped him last week and he just missed out on the each-way pay-out places finishing sixth – a first round 75 scuppering any real chance of victory.
A brighter start at Scottsdale this week will surely reward backers at 16/1. In fact, a better opening day two years ago could well have seen Fowler win this event. He followed a round one 70 with scores of 66, 65 and 69, enough for a share of fifth. And with totals as low as 63 at the Arizona layout in both 2009 and 2010, it is safe to say Fowler has the game for the venue.
As has Jason Day, who looks overpriced at current odds of 40/1. He has shaken off injury problems that beset his 2012 campaign, ending the year on a high with fourth place in the Justin Timberlake Open, and he was ninth on his seasonal debut at the Farmer Insurance Open last time out.
His Monday 66 caught the eye, as did his putting. He ranked inside the top ten of the putts per greens in regulation stats category at Torrey Pines.
Finally, Nick Watney’s form is too good to ignore at 14/1 and a saver on the player who has won twice in his last nine starts, not to mention rewarding each-way supporters last week, is advised.
My three to follow – Fowler, Day and Watney.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date