Fantasy Golf: Masters Preview

Published:

Fantasy Golf kicks off THIS week with the first major of the year - The Masters at Augusta National. 

While you get ready to pick your teams, we've had a look at the fantasy line-up in order to give you a little insight to help you pick your eight players.

In this year's version of the game, you are given a pot of £80m to spend on 8 players... and with the World's top players fetching for a hefty £15m each, you've got to be wise when it comes to picking your team.

So who should you pick? First thing's first, make sure they are playing this week! If you aren't sure - we've compiled a full list of everyone who qualified for the Masters (so hopefully you won't find yourself with someone who isn't in the field)

We've singled out a few players to give you insights in to how they are playing and what their Masters record looks like. The likes of DJ, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy are all aiming to take one step closer to clinching the Masters title, which Jordan Spieth is hoping to get past last year's back-nine horror show. Meanwhile, tour rookies have been showing what they are made of this year - and while they may not have Masters experience, they've shown they can compete at the highest level.

THE FIELD: The High Tariff Players

Day and DJ looking to win their first Masters

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Fantasy Price £15m
There's no way to overlook the World No.1 at the moment, having already won three times this season which includes both WGC titles – where he became the first person ever to win all four (a feat not even Tiger managed)
Record at Augusta: The last two years have seen DJ take to Augusta, finishing 4th last year and 6th in 2015. He's played a total of 7 times, with the only time he was cut coming in 2014. The main difference? Last year DJ went in to the big tournaments looking to become a major champion... now he's that and more with World No.1 status.

RORY MCILROY:  Fantasy Price £15m
The World No.2 came back from injury this season and immediately propelled himself in to contention. He finished T7 at the WGC Mexico and T4 at the Arnold Palmer Invitational – so could certainly threaten at Augusta. His last tournament was the WGC Match-play, but was knocked out after only one round as fellow pool player Gary Woodland withdrew to due a family emergency.
Record at Augusta: The only major he hasn't won, and the monkey he's itching to get off his back. He has a pretty impressive record at Augusta, having finished inside the top 10 for each of the past three years – though he still rues the time he held a four-shot lead going in to Sunday in 2011. He's played eight times and missed the cut only once - 7 years ago.

JORDAN SPIETH: Fantasy Price £15m
A win at AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, two top 5s and a top 10 make up half of Jordan Spieth's results this season. Before he missed the cut at the Shell Houston Open his worst result was T30 at the WGC Matchplay- but all that means is he has had more time to practice at Augusta.
Record at Augusta: The most impressive record of anyone going, Jordan Spieth has played in the Masters three times, finished second twice and gained the green jacket once. Jordan held a five-shot lead at one point during last year's final round before carding a quadruple bogey on the 12th, but he has insisted that he has overcome those demons .... And birdied it twice earlier this year when he went back.

spieth

JASON DAY:  Fantasy Price £15m
The World No.3 is returning following time out to be with his mother after his withdrawl at the WGC Dell Match Play. His best finish in 2017 is T5 at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, but he insists he's ready to return – and who would rule out a former World No.1 with a great Masters record?
Record at Augusta: He finished T2 in 2011 and 3rd in 2013, and since then his worst result was T28 in 2015. He was tied for 10th in last year's tournament, and it's clearly a course he feels comfortable on.

HENRIK STENSON: Fantasy Price £15m
So far the Open Champion hasn’t had the best start to 2017. He missed the cut in his last two events and WD from the WGC Mexico with a stomach illness. His top finish this season was T7 at the Valspar Championship.
Record at Augusta: Stenson was T24 in 2016 and finished inside the top 20 the previous two years. The most convincing argument? He hasn’t missed a cut since 2011 and now has the advantage of being a major champion.

JUSTIN ROSE Fantasy Price £14.5m
Having a fairly consistent season, the Olympic Champion has had three top 5s in 2017 and his worst finish this year so far being T39.
Record at Augusta: 3 top 10s in his last five starts, which includes T2 in 2015. Has never missed a cut in 11 starts.

ADAM SCOTT: Fantasy Price £14.5m
The 2013 Champion’s best finish in 2017 is T11, but missing the cut last week only means more practice at Augusta.
Record at Augusta: He hasn’t missed a cut since 2009, and his worse finish came last year at T42.

SERGIO GARCIA:
Sergio has only played a handful of events in 2017, but they include a worst finish of T49 and a victory at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic. He's one of the most profilic names to have never won a major... could this be the year?
Record at Augsuta: He's had mixed success in the Masters, with two top 5s and five missed cuts in 18 appearances. He seems to be getting on better with the course the past two years though, finishing T34 last year and T17 in 2015.

PHIL MICKELSON: Fantasy Price £13.5m
Mickelson hasn’t missed a cut since September and was inside the top 10 in both of the World Golf Championship events held so far in 2017.
Record at Augusta: Lefty has won the Masters three times and finished in the top 10 15 times in 22 appearances. He missed the cut last year for only the third time in his career, but was T2 in 2015.

THE FIELD: Players looking for their first major


Fowler and Matsuyama are still looking for their first major

RICKIE FOWLER: Fantasy Price £14.5m
He currently leads the tour in scrambling and is second in scoring average. He finished second at the Shell Houston Open and hasn’t finished outside the top 16 in his last five events – which includes a win at the Honda Classic. Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnson tipped him as his pick
Record at Augusta: He missed the cut last year, but has had success in the past finishing 12th and 5th respectively in 2015 and 2014.

HIDEKI MATSUYAMA : Fantasy Price £14.5m
Matsuyama was tipped early on this season as a favourite for the Masters, but he hasn’t had as much success in his last few events. He is one of the few double winners in 2017 having won both the Hero World Golf Challenge and Waste Management Pheonix Open, but followed it up with a MC at the Genesis Open. His best result in his past four events is T25, but it would be foolish to overlook his potential at Augusta given his record the past two years.
Record at Augusta:
Matsuyama has played the Masters a total of five times, which includes his first performance where he finished as leading amateur in 2011. It’s certainly a course that he has shown to like – especially given the past two years where he finished 5th in 2015 and 7th in last year’s event.

JON RAHM : Fantasy Price £12m
Rahm has burst on to the scene this year, and the PGA Tour newcomer is certainly showing he’s made for the top. He won the Farmers Insurance Open and has since had three other top 5 finishes and a top 10. In 2017 he hasn’t finished worse than T34, and while many will wonder if he can handle the pace in the majors – they only need to look at the 2016 US Open leading amateur’s record (2nd and 3rd) in the last two World Golf Championships to know that answer.

TYRRELL HATTON : Fantasy Price £13m
The World No. 15 finished 5th in The Open Championship and 10th in the PGA Championship last year, and seems destined to make an impact with his temporary status on the PGA Tour for 2017. In his last five starts he’s finished no worse than 24th, which includes two T4’s at the Honda Classic and Arnold Palmer Invitational, as well as finishing 10th in the WGC Mexico.

Westwood partnered Willett last year

LEE WESTWOOD : Fantasy Price £11m
In his last 7 Masters starts, Westwood has gone (2010-2016): 2nd, 11th, 3rd, 8th, 7th, 46th, 2nd, and hasn’t missed a cut since 2006. He’s had several top 30 finishes this season and was T17 at the WGC Dell Match Play – but he clearly is a fan of Augusta National and it seems to like him too. He partnered Danny Willett last year during the final round.

Lower ranked players with a good record either at Augusta or this season

Jhonattan Vegas : Fantasy Price £8.5m
Since 2011, Vegas’s only appearance in a major was at the PGA Championship last year – where he finished T22. His best finish this year so far is 4th at the Honda Classic, but he hasn’t missed a cut since October of last year which makes him a safe pair of hands.

Pat Perez : Fantasy Price £8.5m
Perez hasn’t played in the Masters since he was cut in 2009, but his game has taken a turn for the better. He’s had two top 5 finishes in 2017 and hasn’t missed a cut since the Frys Open in October.

Adam Hadwin : Fantasy Price £8m
Mr 59 won the Valspar Championship to qualify for the Masters, and is missing his honeymoon to be here. He hasn’t missed a cut since the Safeway Open last year, and finished T6 at the Arnold Palmer invitational – which was his last event before this week.

Hudson Swafford : Fantasy Price £7m
Swafford has had a mixed bag of results since he won the Career Builder Challenge in January, but seems to have re-found his form in the past two weeks. He heads in to his first ever Masters with two successive top 10s at the Arnold Palmer Invitaitonal and Shell Houston Open.

Angel Cabrera
Angel Cabrera : Fantasy Price £5m
The 2009 Masters Champion finished T24 last year and is a great pick if you're short of fantasy money this year. If there’s anyone who knows that course its Cabrera, and given that he just had a hole in one during his final round at the Shell Houston Open to go -4 for the tournament, it would be foolish to write him off.

fatansy golf