BMW Championship 2015: Dave Tindall rates the top 10 for current, course and long-term form

2013 Conway Farms winner Zach Johnson is fancied to record a high finish again this week
2013 Conway Farms winner Zach Johnson is fancied to record a high finish again this week

Dave Tindall arms you with the stats that matter for a punt on the Top 5 and Top 10 Finish markets in this week's play-off event at Conway Farms...

"He won the event when it was held at Conway Farms in 2013 with rounds of 64-70-69-65. Johnson was 6th in Driving Accuracy, 3rd in Greens In Regulation and 5th in Putting Average that week."

Back Zach Johnson for Top 5 @ 5.85/1

Jason Day

After winning the USPGA and The Barclays in a combined 39-under, Day finally returned to earth at the Deutsche Bank. "I was running on fumes," he said. Then again, T12 was hardly a disgrace and means he hasn't finished outside the top dozen in seven starts since the US Open. With a few doubts over McIlroy and Spieth, it means he's the favourite for victory again here. Part of that is due to his fourth place when this tournament was played for the first and only time at this week's course, Conway Farms, in 2013.

"Really looking forward to coming back to this course," he said in Tuesday's press conference. "It's an exciting golf course to play. And with how the weather conditions are supposed to be this week, it should be very difficult with the wind. But coming off a week off, I feel refreshed. I feel good to go."

Last four events: 12-1-1-12
Conway Farms record: 4
BMW Championship form: WD-4-49-54-59
Last 50 starts - Win: 12%, Top 5: 34%, Top 10: 42%


Rory McIlroy

Rust was bound to be an issue for Rory at the Deutsche Bank Championship given that it was just his second start since June's US Open. There were certainly no problems with his long game (10th Driving Distance, 6th Driving Accuracy, 5th Greens In Regulation) but his lack of golf showed in his short game (40th Scrambling, 69th Putting Average). He did close with a 66 though and said afterwards: "Overall I can take the positives from it. It was a good score in tricky conditions. It was a little windy out there. All of this to take into (the BMW in) Chicago. His performance at this course two years ago was rather curious. He opened 78-77 but, due to there being no cut, he was still around for the weekend and shot a pair of closing 68s to finish T59. He was suffering one of his dips at the time so perhaps not too much should be read into it although, right now, he's not had a finish better than T9 in five starts since mid-May.

Last four events: 29-17-9-MC
Conway Farms record: 59
BMW Championship form: 8-59-1-37
Last 50 starts - Win: 16%, Top 5: 36%, Top 10: 58%


Jordan Spieth

Spieth, almost unbelievably, has missed the cut in both of the first two play-off events. So is there a problem? Not according to the man himself. "Everything feels normal. Everything is on point. My game is in a solid state right now. It's in a state where I can certainly shoot into double digits under par," he said in Tuesday's press conference. Spieth, who has won two majors along with two other PGA Tour events since March, was T16 when the tournament was held at Conway Farms in 2013. After nine holes of practice on Tuesday, he said: "It's a beautiful place here. It's a bit of a quirky golf course but in a good way - more holes than on a lot of places we play where you don't hit driver off the tee. I like the course a lot. The greens are in unbelievable shape. They're putting incredibly well. We'll get some heavy winds Thursday it looks like, so you've got to be able to control your ball because the rough is up."

Last four events: MC-MC-2-10
Conway Farms record: 16
BMW Championship form: 8-16
Last 50 starts - Win: 10%, Top 5: 34%, Top 10: 46%


Henrik Stenson

Stenson's knocks at the door get louder as he chases a first win of 2015 and he had a golden chance to burst it open at the Deutsche Bank Championship a fortnight ago before finding water on the 16th hole in round four. He was one clear at the time but ended up losing by a shot after the resulting double bogey. "A little disappointed, but still a good week, played well," was his calm reflection of events. The Swede has now finished runner-up in both play-off tournaments while his tee-to-green figures have been superb since the US Open and he's No.1 in that category on the PGA Tour stats. If there is a doubt this week, it's that he only managed T33 at Conway Farms in 2013 when in the form of his life. He'd won the previous play-off event at TPC Boston and would go on to win the Tour Championship and the FedEx Cup itself a week later.

Last four events: 2-2-25-6
Conway Farms record: 33
BMW Championship form: 23-33-52
Last 50 starts - Win: 6%, Top 5: 38%, Top 10: 44%


Rickie Fowler

After being classed as "overrated" by his peers in a poll conducted in Sports Illustrated, Fowler has made that harsh assessment looks absolutely ridiculous by winning three of his last 11 starts - the Players Championship, the Scottish Open and the Deutsche Bank Championship in Boston a fortnight ago. Like Jason Day, he's now getting it done when in contention so has to rate as a real title threat this week - especially as winning back-to-back events in the FedEx Cup play-offs is common (it's been done five times since their launch in 2007). The American shot himself in the foot with an opening 77 at Conway Farms two years ago but recovered to finish T39 after two 68s and a closing 71.

Last four events: 1-MC-30-10
Conway Farms record: 39
BMW Championship form: 4-39-41-48-45
Last 50 starts - Win: 6%, Top 5: 24%, Top 10: 40%


Dustin Johnson

Conway Farms certainly didn't look a good fit for DJ two years ago when he limped home in 62nd place out of 70. He missed nearly half the fairways and had poor scrambling and putting stats. His own assessment? "Just nothing went in the hole. Just had a lot of good opportunities and just missed a lot of short putts."

He's in a healthy 8th spot in this year's FedEx Cup standings but will have been disappointed to only finish T44 at TPC Boston last time after posting T9 at The Barclays. He is a previous winner of this event in Illinois when taking the title at Cog Hill in 2010 while he also posted T6 when Crooked Stick played host in 2012.

Last four events: 44-9-7-53
Conway Farms record: 62
BMW Championship form: 62-6-65-1-30
Last 50 starts - Win: 4%, Top 5: 22%, Top 10: 40%


Bubba Watson

Bubba has two seconds and a third in his last five starts but was disappointing last time when T29 at the Deutsche Bank Championship. With plenty of wind and rough to contend with this week, Conway Farms doesn't leap off the page as a Bubba sort of course. That said, he didn't fare too badly last time, shooting 71-71-69-70 to finish T24, and he wasn't in particularly good form at the time. However, you get the impression he'd rather this tournament was back at Cherry Hills where he finished runner-up 12 months ago. Watson is fifth in the FedEx Cup standings going into the event so at least has the motivation to protect his position so he can have a crack at the jackpot in Atlanta next week.

Last four events: 29-3-21-2
Conway Farms record: 24
BMW Championship form: 2-24-12-53-50-15-28-18Jim
Last 50 starts - Win: 8%, Top 5: 26%, Top 10: 32%


Jim Furyk

Furyk shot a remarkable 59 in the second round last year (only the sixth sub-60 in PGA Tour history) which becomes even more extraordinary when you consider that the next best score that day was a 65. None of that year's major winners even broke par with the wind blowing. In the end it wasn't enough to give him the title as, rather predictably, he went a little flat after his magic 18 and had to settle for third. That added to a wonderful record in the State of Illinois (he won his only major there and boasts another 10 top 10s) while his current form is hot too. Furyk has four top fives in his last eight starts and that becomes four in his last five if you filter out majors. He looks as solid a betting proposition as anyone this week.

Last four events: 4-11-30-3
Conway Farms record: 3
BMW Championship form: 4-3-9-22-15-2-3-14
Last 50 starts - Win: 2%, Top 5: 32%, Top 10: 46%


Justin Rose

Rose recovered from an opening 77 to finish T16 at The Barclays but he missed the cut at the Deutsche Bank after shooting 71-75 so he's certainly not been at his best in the play-offs so far. He did win this BMW Championship in Illinois in 2011 but that was at Cog Hill where he also took fifth place in 2007. At this week's venue, Conway Farms, he had to settle for T33 in 2013 after breaking par just once over the four days. In theory, this course should be a decent fit for him but, of all the top players, Rose still looks the most likely to ruin good tee-to-green play with poor putting.

Last four events: MC-16-4-3
Conway Farms record: 33
BMW Championship form: 35-33-16-1-21-5
Last 50 starts - Win: 6%, Top 5: 34%, Top 10: 46%


Zach Johnson

There's lots to like about Johnson's chances this week. For starters, he won the event when it was held at Conway Farms in 2013 with rounds of 64-70-69-65. He'd said after seeing the course for the first time: "I felt very, very comfortable on tee shots, I felt very, very comfortable on approach shots, and obviously I felt very, very comfortable on the putting greens." The stats backed the words up as he was 6th in Driving Accuracy, 3rd in Greens In Regulation and 5th in Putting Average that week. He returns this year as the Open champion so will walk even taller onto the first tee. So far in the play-offs, he's posted fourth in The Barclays and T22 at the Deutsche Bank.

Last four events: 22-4-MC-33
Conway Farms record: 1
BMW Championship form: 43-1-12-31-15-5-38
Last 50 starts - Win: 4%, Top 5: 14%, Top 10: 30%


Conclusion

The evidence from 2013 suggests this is no track for bombers and this year the rough is reported to be up while it should be windy too.

Two years ago at Conway Farms, Zach Johnson won and Jim Furyk was third and I see no reason why this pair can't flourish again.

Both are in excellent form and there are question marks hanging over some of the elite players.

So, let's keep it simple and back both Johnson and Furyk for a top five finish at 5.85/1 and 5.04/1 respectively.

Johnson has a habit of playing well on the same courses while Furyk has a stunning record in Illinois and will relish a return to the venue of his 59.

A top five for either will put us well in profit.


Recommended Bets
Back Zach Johnson for Top 5 @ 5.85/1
Back Jim Furyk for Top 5 @ 5.04/1

<strong>Dave's 2015 P/L on Top 5/10s (based on £10 per selection)</strong>

Staked: £350
Returned: £426.65
P/L: +£76.65

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