Dan Roebuck’s PGA Tour preview: Crowne Plaza Invitational
With names like Phil Mickelson, Steve Stricker and Zach Johnson on the honours board in recent years, it will come as no surprise to hear that the premium is on putting when it comes to this week’s PGA Tour event – the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth.
The venue, known as Hogan’s Alley after Ben Hogan who was a five-time champion, also puts a premium on accuracy and distance control.
Charl Schwartzel, who was third in Texas on Sunday, vies for favouritism at 14/1, but the South African has no course experience this week, while the other market principle, Johnson, may have oodles of form at the layout – he’s won here twice – but hasn’t managed a top ten since last July. Both are worth taking on.
Kevin Streelman ranked inside the top ten of both driving accuracy and greens in regulation on his latest start, when he rewarded our followers with second place at Sawgrass at 90/1. His form figures since the start of April read 3-6-2, and with tenth place at Colonial in 2011, he is the first name on the staking plan at 20/1.
Streelman also grades in the top 20 for strokes gained in putting.
As does Chris Kirk (33/1), whose play – ten straight cuts made with a best 2013 finish of second at Pebble Beach – hasn’t always got the reward it has deserved. Fifth at Colonial last year after 16th in 2011 bodes well for this solid performer in the Lone Star State.
The last time Martin Laird played in Texas he won – at Houston – and fifth place in the Players Championship last time out, when he ranked third in putting average, along with two tenth place efforts at Colonial is persuasive enough for me to make him my third player to follow at 33/1.
The selections: Streelman, Kirk and Laird.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publication