WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational First-Round Leader Tips: Pick Palmer

American Ryan Palmer
Ryan Palmer can start fast

TPC Southwind in Tennessee stages this week's World Golf Championship event and Dave Tindall has three each-way picks to be First Round Leader...

"His ability to start fast and go low on this particular course makes him well worth a play for FRL."

Back Ryan Palmer E/W @ 61.060/1

Each-way terms: 1/5 odds, 6 places

Weather forecast for Thursday: Temperatures are in the early-to-mid 90s with winds described as light and variable. There's a very slight chance of rain.

First-round leader history at TPC Southwind:

2020 - 62 Brooks Koepka
2019 - 62 Jon Rahm
2018 - 65 Seamus Power
2017 - 64 Stewart Cink, Matt Every, Scott Brown, Sebastian Munoz
2016 - 65 Seung-Yul Noh, Shawn Stefani, Tom Hoge
2015 - 64 Brooks Koepka, Greg Owen, Ryan Palmer

Strategy: The limited field of 66 is split into three-balls and there's a two-tee start so there's less than a couple of hours between the first groups (09:15) and last (11:05). That means weather isn't really an issue so we're free to pick from any part of the draw.

Palmer can post early score

Ryan Palmer was the joint-leader after 18 holes here back in 2015 when starting out with a 64 before slipping to tied 22nd.

This is a course he clearly likes and that had already been shown a few years earlier when Palmer finished third in 2012 and fourth in 2013.

He's started with a round in the 60s in his last three visits and closed last year's event with another 64.

That seems a familiar number as the American shot it again to conclude the recent Scottish Open, a lap which vaulted him into fourth.

Palmer had started his week in Scotland with a 66, a round which put him fourth after day one.

His ability to start fast and go low on this particular course makes him well worth a play for FRL at 60/1.

Palmer heads out at 09:48 from the 1st.

Cink can shine

This event has become well known for repeat performances with Daniel Berger winning it back-to-back and Dustin Johnson also posting two wins.

So I'm hoping that could act out in the FRL market too.

I've already picked one previous 18-hole leader in Ryan Palmer and I'll side with another in Stewart Cink.

The veteran opened with a 64 to top the day one leaderboard here in 2017 while he fired another 64 (R3) on his most recent appearance in 2018.

Cink finished fourth and 10th in those two events while he also has a previous fifth at Southwind from 2004 so it's been a good course for him.

His form looks to have tailed off of late after missed cuts in the Open Championship and the 3M Open but he started out at Royal St George's with a 66 and shot a 69 in round one at the 3M. In the former he was fourth after day one.

At the moment he seems to be mixing low scores with high ones but that's fine for this market and on a course where he makes lots of birdies Cink is a bet for FRL at 80/1.

He starts out at 09:59 from the 1st.

Harman can come out fast

Brian Harman has been a familiar face on first-round leaderboards in the big events this season.

He's finished Thursday's action in second place at The Players Championship, the US Masters and the Open Championship.

Expanding it to the season as a whole, the left-hander is fourth in the first-round scoring charts.

With four top 10s and a further five top 20s in his last 11 starts, Harman has been in excellent form since March and scoring well on a variety of courses.

He hasn't played this one since 2015 but in 2014 he finished sixth after opening 69-65-67.

Harman, who tees off at 10:21 from the 1st, is a 45/1 chance.

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