This week in Austin, 64 of the world’s best players will take part in golf’s version of March Madness: the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
Instead of just talking about which players to put in your fantasy lineups, I think it would be beneficial to help you understand how to maximize your chances of making money on DraftKings this week.
What is the tournament format for this week?
The 64-man field is broken down into 16 pods of four players. Each player will contest an 18-hole match against each of his other three pod members. Whoever has the best record in each pod after everyone has played three matches will advance to the Sweet 16. From there, it’s single-elimination until we get a winner.
How should I structure my lineup?
Every player is guaranteed three rounds, but you should focus on players with lots of upside because those who make the final day will end up playing seven rounds (as there is both a final and a third-place match). Someone who gets to Sunday may outscore three to four players combined for the event.
You need to structure your lineup so it’s theoretically possible for four of your players to reach the final four. Every year in this event, I see a ton of lineups go bust because people don’t plan ahead and end up with players facing each other in the round of 16 or round of 8.
To put it as simply as possible, you should have one player from the top left quadrant of the bracket, one from bottom left, one from top right, and one from the bottom right. Then you still have two other players to select, but make sure you don’t take three players from the same quadrant or two from the same pod.
Which two players might fly under the radar this week?
Brendon Todd $6,400
Todd has one of the best draws in the field. His pod includes Daniel Berger, who has lingering rib issues and is 1-8 in matches at Austin CC; Harris English, who has gone 32nd, MC, MC, 66th, and 26th in five starts since his win at Kapalua; and Erik van Rooyen, whose only finish better than 56th in his past seven starts was a T-37 at the limited-field WGC Workday. Todd’s game is based on accuracy off the tee and a solid putter. In that way he resembles Kevin Kisner, who has had a lot of success at the WGC Match Play (win in 2019, runner-up in 2018).
Ian Poulter $6,700
Poulter is a great leverage play against pod member Rory McIlroy. Whereas McIlroy has been struggling with his swing, Poulter is a match-play savant who has gone 43-18-5 in his past 66 matches, including 6-2 at this event. It’s a Ryder Cup year, so it would be fitting for Poulter to rise to the top this week.