Sony Open preview and betting tips 2023
Updated: Jan 10
Sony Open Golf Tips
Spieth 18/1 - 2pts E/W - 8 Places
Conners 25/1 - 2pts E/W - 8 Places
The first full-field event of 2023 and the second event of the year sees the players tee it up in Hawaii for the Sony Open. The tournament is celebrating its 25th edition of Sony as their title sponsor. Host course this week will once again be Waialae Country Club, a 7,044 yard par 70. Hideki Matsuyama is back to defend after he beat Russell Henley in a playoff last year with an eventual winning score of -23 after coming back from a five-shot deficit with nine holes to play. The field however is headlined by two names, and two surprisingly good friends who spent Christmas Day together! Jordan Spieth, world number 14 and Tom Kim, world number 15 are both teeing it up in Hawaii this week to bolster the field. Nineteen of the 39 golfers who played the Sentry Tournament of Champions will also make the island hop for the Sony Open including world number 19 Sungjae Im. I am keen to side with players this week who did play in the first event of the year.
Looking back at the winners’ statistics over the last three events here, Hideki and Cam Smith both ranked 1st in SG: Putting whereas Kevin Na relied on an excellent T2G game when ranking 2nd in this department and ranking 23rd for putting. Hideki ranked 5th T2G and Cam Smith clearly rolled his rock to perfection the week he won as he only ranked 30th for this stat. None of the previous three winners ranked inside the top 20 for greens in regulation. A good putting week from a solid ball striker is likely to be what is needed for this test. Something to watch out for in my opinion is that six of the last eleven winners had posted a top 12 in this event prior to their win so it seems key to have had a good finish at Waialae Country Club beforehand.
Jordan Spieth 18/1
The standout pick for me this week has to be my boy Jordan Spieth at a healthy 18/1 after finishing T13 at Kapalua. He was third at the halfway stage and only a relatively poor third round cost him from being in the mix on Sunday. It must be noted that Jordan went off a 28/1 shot last week in a much stronger field than we have this week. He’s only played at Waialae four times, finishing 3rd and 18th in two of those starts, as mentioned above, a previous good finish at this event seems key. Several players have mentioned that the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head is a similar test to Waialae and of course, Spieth won the RBC Heritage last year when ranking 60th in SG: Putting. If he can find the heat with his flatstick this week, then I’d expect him to be right up there come Sunday evening as we know how good his T2G game has been for a while now.
Corey Conners 25/1
The second and last pick in my portfolio this week is the Canadian number one Corey Conners. He comes into this event with a promising top 20 finish at Kapalua where he typically ranked strong on approach as he usually does but like always his putter did let him down. One strong positive about Conners this week is his strong course form at Waialae, his last three starts here have yielded three top 12 finishes including a tied 3rd in 2019 where he ranked 3rd on approach, surprise surprise. Conners was 25th in the world rankings when the 2022 season finished at the TOUR Championship, he is now 34th and will be wanting a strong year and he will also be expecting to put in good performances in the major championships mixing it with the big boys. I can see Conners having a good year and he can get the ball rolling this week at the Sony Open.