WGC HSBC Champions preview, picks + predictions plus Driver-Off-The-Deck BOLD Play of the Week #WowAWGCEventOutsideTheUS #WhatAConcept

I wrote here last week how awesome live late night golf on TV is and the CIMB Classic didn’t disappoint.  The good news is that we get to do the same thing again this week- and not only is it more live late night golf on TV, but it’s again a 78 player no-cut field, and this time it’s a WGC event- the WGC HSBC Champions event in Shanghai, China to be exact (wait- a World Golf Championship event held in a country other than the U.S?!  What a concept!).

The field is stacked for the most overlooked WGC event of the year, with Phil, Dustin, Luke, Lee, Sergio, Ian, Keegan, Rose, Kaymer, Dufner, Spieth, Sneds, Rickie, Haas and Rory in the field- yep, that’s nothing to sneeze at.

Now, let’s hop into some picks:

LOCKZILLAS (Matsuyama t-25th, Walker 6th)

Sergio Garcia
Sergio Garcia
– El hombre so many people love to hate is simply one of the steadiest, most consistent players on Tour.  El Nino finished t-11th last week at the CIMB in his season debut, which followed consecutive finishes of t-4th, t-18th and t-9th in the final 3 Fedex Cup events.  Sergio is a must pick this week.

Jimmy Walker
Jimmy Walker
– Hasn’t missed a beat after his breakthrough victory at the Frys.com Open just a couple weeks ago, as the man with the nearly the same name as a fine scotch (Johnnie Walker) has posted t-12th and solo 6th his past two events.  Look for a top ten by Jimmy in his WGC debut.

SEMI-FLIER (Aphibarnrat t-3rd)

Kiradech Aphibarnrat
Kiradech Aphibarnrat
– I had this Asian John Daly in the same semi-flier slot for last week at the CIMB Classic, and the barn rat delivered in finishing t-3rd.  Look for another top ten finish as he pushes to gain temporary PGA Tour membership.

HOSEL-ROCKET BUST (Bubba t-31st)

Henrik Stenson
Henrik Stenson
– Your 2013 FedEx Cup champ is fighting a nasty hand injury, is still on cloud nine after his $10 million payday for winning the FedEx Cup and will not be a factor this week.  Shot rounds of 72-74-79 in first three rounds last week at the BMW Masters and isn’t ready to resume the Terminator-like grind he exuded so well while chasing down Finchem’s prized trophy.

DRIVER-OFF-THE-DECK BOLD PLAY OF THE WEEK (Lynn t-64th)

Peter Hanson
Peter Hanson
– This long-bombing Swede was hampered by a back injury through the summer, took a couple months off from tourney play following the Wyndham Championship, was well-rested going into last week’s BMW Masters and it showed to the tune of a t-8th finish—which included a first round 79!  Peter plays in the HSBC every year so he knows the course and was t-6th here back in ’10.  I expect to see him contend and have a chance to win coming down the stretch on Sunday.

#isitSundayyet

Joel Harrington
@joel4deepgolf

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