Golf fans are spoiled this week with two tournaments going on at the same time. While the top 64 in the world are go head-to-head in Texas at the World Golf Championship, former greats and journeymen alike are heading to the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico for the Puerto Rico Open. One of the weakest fields of the year will tee it up at the course formerly known as Trump International now changed to The Coco Beach Golf & Country Club. Controversial Presidents aside, Coco Beach sounds more like a holiday resort where you drink Piña Coladas and dance and not a course to host a PGA Tour event. The highest ranked players in the field this week and thus favorites to win are Graeme McDowell and Wesley Bryan. Mcdowell's former Ryder Cup teammate Ian Poulter, probably smarting from not being able to show his famed match play skills at the WGC Match Play, is also in the field. Poulter tied for 3rd in this event last year after leading at the 54-hole stage and is playing decent golf this season. It's about time Poulter won again and in one of the weaker fields of the year, this could be his week.
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The smart money for the week will be on Scott Brown at 33-1.
Brown was runner-up at Riviera a month ago in the Genesis Open but two missed cuts since. He clearly loves the Puerto Rico Open event having played well here every year. For those looking for an outside bet, Camilo Villegas might get some inspiration from being back in a Spanish-speaking country and his length will be an advantage on one of the longer courses of the year.
Check the latest odds and betting markets in the PGA Golf Tour The Coco Beach course, with wide fairways and large greens, will allow wayward players to prosper this week. And being a par 72, the winner will be the one who eats up the par-5's. The only protection for the coastal course to stop it being ripped to shreds by the professionals is the wind. Rio Grande is usually windy this time of year so you'll see the palm leaves fluttering; another reason to bet on Mcdowell who will feel like he's playing a links course back home in Northern Ireland. The weathermen have forecast rain this week, which will slow the greens down and make the tournament a birdie fest. Wind is predicted to blow in the 9-11mph range so nothing British Open-like. The wind will blow stronger as the day progresses so bet on players who draw favorable tee times - out early on Thursday or Friday - to do well. Winning scores range widely at the Puerto Rico open with Scott Brown and Chesson Hadley posting 20- and 21-under in 2013 and '14, while Tony Finau won shot 12-under last year and Alex Cejka won with 7-under in 2015 when gales almost caused the tournament to be cancelled. Cajka's win gives some hints to what could happen this week: if the wind blows, bet on an experienced European player and a low score. But if conditions stay calm, get ready for a winning score in the 20-under range from a first-time winner.