Stacy Lewis The Value Bet In Florida
CME Group Tour Championship
Since 2011, the CME Group Titleholders has been the season finale in women’s professional golf, but this year’s name change reflects a shake-up in the LPGA structure.
Throughout the season, players have been earning points towards the Race to the CME Globe rankings and the top 72 on the list will compete in this tournament for a share of a $2 million prize fund. The overall winner of the Race to the CME Globe is in line to receive a $1 million bonus.
The Gold Course at the Tiburon Golf Club, Naples, Florida is one of two courses designed by Greg Norman, and this is the second year it has hosted the LPGA end-of-season bash. It’s over 7200 yards long and is a decent test of driving distance, but accuracy is the key to avoiding the many water hazards, the thick rough and the intimidating stacked sod wall bunkers, which are a feature of the venue.
In The Bunker
Inbee Park goes into this tournament top of the Rolex rankings, second on the Race to the CME Globe list and off the back of an incredible run of form. She hasn’t finished outside the top 15 of any event since June and has made the top five in seven of her eight last outings. But her dominant form is fully reflected by the market and odds of 9/2 in such a competitive event means she offers little value this week.
As an alternative to Inbee Park at a bigger price, Stacy Lewis fits the bill. She hasn’t been able to add to her two Majors this season, but 2014 has brought another three LPGA Tour wins.
She has finished down the field in her last two outings, but goes into this tournament as the Race to the CME Globe points leader and the big occasion should see her perform at her best. She is a solid bet at 9/1.
Another player capable of challenging Inbee Park is China’s Shanshan Feng. The first Chinese golfer to win a Major, she has found some strong late season form, culminating in her second place at the Lorena Ochoa Invitational last weekend. She showed her liking for Tiburon when winning this event twelve months ago and is a good bet at 12/1 to repeat the victory this year.
After coming close to winning her second Major in 2013, Ryu So-yeon has had another solid year on the LPGA Tour, winning another title at the Canadian Open and she has maintained her form this autumn, securing top ten finishes in three of her last four tournaments. One of the rising stars in women’s golf, in just her third full year on the Tour, she has the talent to win this event and is worth a look at 14/1.