Find Me a 100 Winner: Hot Hadley worth chancing in Detroit

Golfer Chesson Hadley
Chesson Hadley in action at the Palmetto Championship

We're off to Ireland and Detroit in search of a big-priced winner this week where Steve Rawlings has picked out three selections...

“Hadley missed the cut at the Travelers Championship last week but he shot a five-under-par, bogey-free 30 on the back-nine to suggest that whatever he found at the Palmetto is still present.”

As highlighted in the preview, some big names have won the Irish Open over the years and I'm quite keen on the favourite, Rory McIlroy, this time around.

But last year's Irish Open winner, John Catlin, was a 65.064/1 chance and the 2015 winner, Soren Kjeldsen, began the week trading at around 340.0339/1 so I haven't neglected the event entirely and I've picked out someone trying to emulate last year's winner...

Brilliant Bland an insulting price

When winning this event at Galgorm Castle in September last year, Catlin was winning his second European Tour event, and his second in the space of less than a month, after he'd edged out Martin Kaymer at the Andalucía Masters just two starts previously.

Richard Bland's first European Tour victory, at the 478th time of asking, was secured last month at the Belfry, when he got the better of Guido Migliozzi in extra time - who's since gone on to finish fourth at the US Open.

Richard Bland at the Belfry.jpg

It may be asking a bit much for Bland to win twice in four starts, having won just once in 478, but at odds in excess of 100.099/1, he's quite frankly an insulting price given he has tournament form (second on debut in 2002) and his win last month came at the Belfry, which like this week's venue, Like Mount Juliet, is an established tree-lined parkland course.

Since his victory, Bland has finished third in Denmark and 50th in the US Open but he led at the halfway stage at Torrey Pines a fortnight ago and he's playing the best golf of his life right now.

There's a very obvious risk that the weekend at Torrey Pines, where he shot 77-78, has knocked him off kilter and his run of impressive form has come to an end but given he was only trading at around 220.0219/1 when he finally got off the mark last month, he looks a big price at around 120.0119/1 this week given he now knows he can deliver the goods.

Back 2 u Richard Bland @ 130.0129/1
Place order to lay 10u @ 10.09/1 & 10u @ 2.01/1

Clues thin on the ground in Detroit

We've only had two previous renewals of the Rocket Mortgage Classic on the PGA Tour (previewed here) and the results couldn't have been more contrasting.

Bryson DeChambeau was an in-form, warm favourite last year but the inaugural event was won easily by 1000.0 chance, Nate Lashley, and I can see us getting another shock result this time around with none of the market leaders making much appeal.

Given the front two last year, DeChambeau and Matthew Wolff, were involved in a playoff at the inaugural 3M Open in 2019, that looks like an event that may correlate nicely so last year's 3M Open winner, Michael Thompson, is an interesting runner here at a huge price but I'm going to leave him out and chance two others...

Kirk can win again at course that fits

Having taken time away from the game in 2019 to deal with alcohol and depression issues, the return to form of Chris Kirk this year, who currently sits 47th in the FedEx Cup Standings, is a great story.

He finished runner-up in the Sony Open in January and top-eight finishes at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the Texas Open and the RBC Heritage since, have secured his playing privileges for next season.


He lost his way on his penultimate start, in The Memorial Tournament, but his opening 67 to sit second after round one was a great knock and given he's a four-time winner on the PGA Tour, he looks worth chancing here given we know the venue suits.

As highlighted in the preview, there appears to be a correlation between this venue and the Country Club of Jackson - home to the Sanderson Farm Championship - Kirk is one of the players to highlight the connection. He finished second in the SFC in 2016 and he was in front in this event at the halfway stage last year.

Kirk tumbled down to the leaderboard to finish 21st last year but I'm perfectly happy to overlook that. It was his first start since he'd won out of the blue on the Korn Ferry Tour after a string of missed cuts and poor performances on the PGA Tour following his return and he'll be far better equipped to contend this time around with his playing rights secured.

Back 2 u Chris Kirk @ 130.0129/1
Place order to lay 10u @ 10.09/1 & 10u @ 2.35/4

Hot-Hadley worth chancing

My third and final pick is Chesson Hadley, who was an unlucky loser at the Palmetto Championship a couple of weeks ago.

Hadley was one of just four players that had to return to the course very early on Sunday to play their 18th hole of round three after a weather delay and I'm convinced it cost him the title.

As detailed in the De-brief, he was shattered by the end and it was painful to watch him bogey the last three holes to lose by a stroke having been matched in-running at just 1.171/6.

He missed the cut at the Travelers Championship last week in his first start since that painful Palmetto conclusion but after an understandably slow start, which saw him shoot 74 on Thursday, and +2 on the front nine on Friday, he shot a five-under-par, bogey-free 30 on the back-nine to suggest that whatever he found at the Palmetto is still present.

Hadley has long spells of poor play but he's put together some nice runs of form throughout his career whenever somethings clicked and he was second in the aforementioned SFC at Country Club of Jackson when in the middle of a hot spell back in 2017.

Harris English, who also traded at odds-on at the Palmetto (1.618/13), bounced back to win the Travelers on Sunday and Chesson is perfectly capable of emulating him.

He looks a juicy price with the Sportsbook with eight places up for grabs at 200/1 and I've also chanced him on the exchange.

Back 1u Chesson Hadley @ 280.0279/1
Place order to lay 10u @ 10.09/1 & 10u @ 2.35/4

1u each-way @ 200/1 Sportsbook

*You can follow me on Twitter @SteveThePunter

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