Tuesday, January 8, 2019

What To Look For: 2019 Sony Open

The Tour comes to the Sony Open at Waialae Country Club.

Waialae has been a tour stop since 1965.  It was built in 1927 under the architecture of Seth Raynor.  It plays to 7,044 yards at a par-70 with 72.1 index.

With Raynor designs there is usually a lot of laying-up off the tee due to sharp angles.  Waialae is one of the lowest hit fairway percentages on the Tour as the tight fairways, sharp angles and wind make it difficult to find the short grass.  The course has a polarizing effect on players as many love it and many absolutely hate it.

The 18th hole is the final critical hole on the course.  But, take a look at the par-4, 15th hole as it is only 398 yards:

It's nothing crazy and plays to just under 4.000 strokes on average.  But, using a driver or being long with the 3-wood off the tee can give a player a sizeable advantage.  It's a very difficult green to find in regulation if the player misses the fairway.  And there is usually one round where the players are finding less than 50% of the fairwyas and the discrepancies in score skyrockets.

This will be a course about mid-to-long approach shots, avoiding impeded shots from the trees, good short game around the green play and making some putts.

Projected Winning Score: -23


Justin Thomas +650
Bryson DeChambeau +1,000
Jordan Spieth +1,400
Kyle Stanley +4,000


Brian Harman +5,500
Adam Hadwin +7,000
Russell Knox +7,000
Sung-Jae Im +8,000
Brian Gay +10,000
Sam Ryder +12,500


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