Welcome to Playing the Tips!
With the PGA TOUR taking a break over the holidays, this section will feature European Tour picks exclusively until January.
Daily Fantasy Sports [DFS]
These lineups will be entered into a large-entry Guaranteed Prize Pool. That means we need to take a risk or two, in order to separate ourselves from the field.
The idea is to provide you a list of names to consider. I would not recommend copying these teams, golfer for golfer. Duplicate teams are no fun and don't help anyone.
Dave Tindall's DraftKings Picks:
Dylan Frittelli ($10,200) – The form choice from the home contingent and $1.5m cheaper than Oosthuizen, who can lack reliability.
Dean Burmester ($9,800) – Top 20 at this venue last time and always a threat on home SA turf. Ended season with T11 at Nedbank and T4 at DP World Tour Championship.
Thomas Aiken ($7,900) – Under $8k for a player with four top fives in last six South African Opens? Yes please. Comes in after top 25s in Hong Kong and Mauritius.
Ernie Els ($7,500) – I have a sneaky feeling for The Big Easy this week. Five-time winner of the event and some encouraging form of late.
Marc Warren ($6,900) – Regained card at Q School after T11 at Valderrama and a reliable cut-maker in South Africa.
Masahiro Kawamura ($7,500) – Let’s ride the hot horse. Top five in Mauritius last week followed a pair of second places on home Japan Tour.
Matt Cooper's DraftKings Picks:
Matt Wallace ($10,700) – Four wins in 34 European Tour regular starts, ended 2018 with two top fives finishes and can start 2019 in similar fashion.
Charl Schwartzel ($10,000)- Overlooking form with class because he has 18 top fives in his last 30 European Tour appearances at home with seven wins.
Christiaan Bezuidenhout ($7,400) - Consistent throughout the 2018 season without contending too much but lots to like about his T15 last week.
Lorenzo Gagli ($7,200) - Won the Kenyan Open this year, has top tens in Joburg and Madrid: He enjoys golf at altitude.
Tom Murray ($6,600) - After the agony of twice missing out on a full card this year a top ten last week in Australia was a huge boost and the bit can remain between the teeth another seven days.
Ernie Els ($7,500) - Five-time winner of the event and the last time he’ll tee it up in it before he hits 50. He’s excited about the senior tour, but would surely like one last hurrah?
Josh Culp's DraftKings Picks:
Louis Oosthuizen ($11,700) – With top 5s in two of his last three starts, I like his form the best of any of the big-name South Africans (Grace, Charl, Frittelli). Hasn't won since Perth in 2016 but this is the perfect type of home-soil event to get him back to the winner's circle.
Richard Sterne ($7,600) – A rare MC for Sterne last week at the Mauritius. He has just 12 MCs worldwide in 70 starts since 2016. I'm expecting a strong bounce-back effort here in Johannesburg for this Pretoria native. Four of his six career wins have come here in South Africa.
Erik Van Rooyen ($9,100) – I'm naturally attracted to EVR as a Minnesota resident, having a wife that graduated from the University of Minnesota. It helps that he's also a talented golfer right on the verge of breaking through. That almost came here at Randpark last year as he finished runner-up to Shubhankar Sharma. It's still the best finish of his Euro Tour career.
David Lipsky ($7,600) – He's one of my go-to guys on short courses and Bushwillow is one of the shortest courses on the Euro Tour. Arrives with T45 or better in three of his last four starts. I'm expecting another top 45 this week but if he demolishes Bushwillow then a top 20 is certainly in the cards.
Pablo Larrazabal ($7,500) – Hit his low point with a MC at the Valderrama Masters, an event and course that should have suited him well. Has rebounded with back-to-back top 30s so I will fire him up again.
Scott Jamieson ($7,000) – Coming in with less form than I'd like to see but Jamieson is a top-25 golfer in the field, from a long-term view. Since 2015, his performance in Africa has also been nearly a stroke better per round, compared to his baseline. I like knowing that he can handle the altitude here in South Africa.