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Golf | The PLAYERS Selections

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Picks for golf’s ‘fifth major’

The PLAYERS Championship takes center stage this week at the iconic TPC Sawgrass. Most of the world’s best are obviously in attendance, with the field just unfortunately missing last year’s winner – Cam Smith.

After showing some fragility last week for the first time in many months, Jon Rahm isn’t a solo favorite for this week’s tournament. He’s joined by Arnold Palmer Invitational T2 Rory McIlroy, both at +850. McIlroy won this in 2019 but even +850 feels a bit short for two sublime and in-form golfers. This is an event that has the potential to throw up a winner from anyone inside the world’s top 50, so instead the UF Team has made their bets on finishing positions.

TOP 20 FINISH: ADAM HADWIN (+350, FanDuel)

Hadwin finished T9 here last year, and only four of those above him lineup this season. In the previous season he finished T29, and 12 months earlier he was T22 the event was abandoned. Sawgrass is a special venue and that sort of consistency speaks volumes.

It’s been six years since Hadwin last won a golf tournament, and we’re not expecting him be in the final pairing on Sunday, but he’s a great value bet to finish inside the top-20 based on the consistency of under-par rounds by the Canadian.

TOP 10 FINISH: COREY CONNERS (+550, FanDuel)

Our second selection is another Canadian, and another with a great record at The PLAYERS – T26 in 2022, T7 in 2021 and the same position when abandoned in 2020.

Conners has been steady this year, making the cut in all five tournaments played and a strong outing to finish T21 in the Arnold Palmer Invitational last week. The trip to Sawgrass could bring out the best in Conners and a top-10 finish is a good play.

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TOP 5 FINISH: SHANE LOWRY (+1000, FanDuel)

It’s a big ask for any player to finish top-5 in a major quality tournament and that’s reflected in Lowry’s odds here, but the Irishman loves the Sawgrass test and boasts a T14 and T5 in his last three tournaments.

Lowry’s an in-form, highly experienced, level-headed, major-winner with a love of Pete Dye designed courses – on paper he’s rock solid.

All odds listed from FanDuel, as of Tuesday March 7.

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