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Sony Open guide

A preview and stats ahead of this week's Sony Open at Waialae Country Club in Honolulu

By Dave Tindall Twitter: @DaveTindallgolf.   Last Updated: 08/01/14 9:54am

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Who will flourish among the palm trees in Hawaii?

Who will flourish among the palm trees in Hawaii?

Sky Bet

The PGA Tour remains in Hawaii for this week's Sony-sponsored tournament at Waialae.

Located between the Koolau mountain range to the north and Pacific Ocean to the south, the 86-year-old venue has been hosting Tour events since 1965.

In contrast to last week's lengthy and undulating par 73, the Honolulu course is a short, flat par 70. It has a fair amount of sand but few sizeable water hazards.

It is an extremely low-scoring venue with last year's champion - American rookie Russell Henley - carding three rounds of 63 over the four days.

During the 2013 event, there were 11 scores of 63 or better recorded at Waialae.

PLAYERS with GOOD to REASONABLE FORM at WAIALAE

Last Eight Years

Player: '06 / '07 / '08 / '09 / '10 / '11 / '12 / '13

Robert Allenby: - / 8 / MC / - / 2 / MC / MC / MC
Stuart Appleby: 7 / MC / - / - / MC / 13 / - / -
Briny Baird: - / 59 / 61 / 23 / 12 / - / MC / -
Shane Bertsch: 13 / 42 / 40 / - / 25 / MC / MC / 13
Chad Campbell: 2 / 46 / 10 / - / 8 / 13 / MC* / 41
KJ Choi: 13 / 4 / Won / 12 / 39 / MC / 38 / MC
Tim Clark: - / - / - / 12 / 25 / 2 / - / 2
Chad Collins: - / - / 25 / - / 16 / MC / MC / -
Brendon de Jonge: - / MC / - / MC / MC / 20 / 10 / 54
Jason Dufner: - / 13 / - / MC / 20 / 56 / MC / -
Brian Gay: - / 54 / 40 / 5 / 25 / 13 / 6 / 31
Paul Goydos: 53 / Won / MC / MC / 39 / MC / MC / -
David Hearn: - / - / - / - / - / MC / 10 / 31
Tim Herron: - / MC / - / 12 / - / MC / 54 / 26
Charles Howell: 53 / 2 / MC / 4 / 5 / MC / 2 / 3
Zach Johnson: - / - / 32 / Won / 12 / MC / 54 / MC
Jerry Kelly: 13 / 13 / 3 / 23 / Wd / 9 / 29 / MC
Matt Kuchar: - / MC / 65 / MC / MC / 5 / - / 5
Doug LaBelle: - / 4 / 10 / - / - / MC / 54 / 49
Marc Leishman: - / - / - / 12 / 20 / 27 / - / 9
Spencer Levin: - / - / 45 / 72 / 25 / 34 / 23 / -
Troy Matteson: 31 / 28 / 8 / 23 / 25 / MC / MC / -
Kevin Na: - / - / 4 / 5 / 52 / 20 / MC / MC
Sean O'Hair: MC / - / 50 / 12 / MC* / - / 2 / -
Jeff Overton: 24 / - / MC / 69 / MC / 20 / 54 / 8
Ryan Palmer: MC / MC / - / - / Won / 52 / MC / 66
Pat Perez: MC / 10 / 4 / MC / 46 / MC / 46 / 9
Carl Pettersson: 10 / MC / 25 / MC / 5 / MC / 2 / 59
Scott Piercy: - / MC / - / 12 / MC / - / 23 / 15
John Rollins: - / 20 / - / - / 8 / - / 10 / 20
Rory Sabbatini: 2 / 34 / 2 / 12 / 39 / 13 / 29 / 59
Adam Scott: 18 / - / - / 2 / - / MC / - / -
John Senden: - / 20 / MC / MC / - / 20 / 23 / 26
Brian Stuard: - / - / - / - / 25 / - / - / 5
Johnson Wagner: - / 34 / - / MC / MC / MC / Won / MC
Jimmy Walker: MC / - / 61 / 32 / MC / 4 / MC / 26
Boo Weekley: - / 20 / MC / 9 / 52 / 27 / - / MC
Mark Wilson: - / - / 25 / MC / 20 / Won / MC / MC
Yong-Eun Yang: - / - / 20 / - / 46 / - / - / 20

MC* = Missed Additional 54-Hole Cut

PLAYERS with POOR to MEDIOCRE FORM at WAIALAE

Last Eight Years

(No Top-40 Finishes from three or more starts since 2006)

Player: '06 / '07 / '08 / '09 / '10 / '11 / '12 / '13

Alex Aragon: MC / - / MC / MC / - / - / MC* / -
Justin Bolli: - / - / MC / - / MC / - / - / MC
Ken Duke: - / 63 / - / - / - / - / 59 / MC
Joe Durant: 53 / MC / - / 59 / - / MC / - / -
Bobby Gates: - / - / - / - / - / MC / 46 / MC
Will MacKenzie: 42 / 42 / MC / MC / - / - / - / -
Hideki Matsuyama: - / - / - / - / - / MC / MC / MC
Kenny Perry: MC / 54 / MC / 59 / - / - / - / -
Nicholas Thompson: MC / - / MC / MC / MC / - / - / 41
Cameron Tringale: - / - / - / - / MC / MC / MC / MC

TOP-25 Finishers at WAIALAE in 2013 (Not Already Listed Above)

Russell Henley: (Won)
Scott Langley: (T-3rd)
Chris Kirk: (T-5th)
Harris English: (T-9th)
Dicky Pride: (T-9th)
Danny Lee: (T-13th)
Scott Gardiner: (T-15th)
Justin Hicks: (T-15th)
Josh Teater: (T-15th)
Ricky Barnes: (T-20th)
Vijay Singh: (T-20th)

LOWEST 15 STROKE AVERAGES at WAIALAE

(Last Four Years 20010/13)

Average (Rounds)

66.67: Tim Clark (12)
67.14: Charles Howell (14)
67.38: Brian Stuard (8)
67.58: John Rollins (12)
67.70: Matt Kuchar (10)
67.75: Marc Leishman (12)
67.83: Chris Kirk (12)
67.94: Brian Gay (16)
68.00: John Senden (12)
68.10: David Hearn (10)
68.21: Carl Pettersson (14)
68.25: Jimmy Walker (12)
68.33: Chad Campbell (15)
68.38: Yong-Eun Yang (8)
68.42: Mark Wilson (12)

Min. No. of Rounds = 8

LOWEST ROUNDS at WAIALAE SINCE 2000

61: David Toms (2006)
62: 14 times
63: 23 times

Note: The current par at Waialae is 70 and has been in place since 1999. When the par was previously 72 (from 1965 thru 1998) the lowest tournament round recorded in the Hawaiian Open was 60 by Davis Love in 1994.

Waialae: Par 70; 7,068 yards

Winning Totals (Last Three Years):

2013: 256 (Russell Henley)
2012: 267 (Johnson Wagner)
2011: 264 (Mark Wilson

Note: Only two of Waialae's last 14 champions have taken more than 266 strokes to complete 72 holes.

Conclusion

Brendon de Jonge is still looking for his first win on the PGA Tour but he gave himself a huge shot of confidence with his excellent performances in the Presidents Cup at Muirfield Village back in October.

It looks only a matter of time before that increased belief results in a victory and this week's course could be a good venue for Brendon's big breakthrough.

Brendon de Jonge: Ready to win

The Zimbabwean struggled at Waialae in his early visits but was 20th in 2011, 10th in 2012 (fourth at halfway, third after 54 holes) and, for the first time, shot all four rounds under par last year.

Two years ago he produced a stunning eight-under 62 in round two so he can go very low on this golf course.

In fact, he can go low on lots of courses. In both 2012 and 2013 de Jonge made more birdies than anyone else on tour so, barring strong winds, he can really cash in at Waialae.

De Jonge, who closed 2013 with five straight finishes of 16th or better, has a strong record on par 70s when you have to keep it in the fairway so all in all the 40/1 looks very fair.

Brian Gay has strong form at this course - a 5th, 6th, 13th, 25th and 31st in the last five runnings - and clearly his game is a good fit for Waialae.

He's a past winner of the Mayakoba Golf Classic in Mexico which has strong form correlations with this tournament due to several shared traits (coastal location, a short, turning track and bermuda greens) while he played well in Hawaii last week.

The Plantation Course isn't really a Brian Gay type of course but he shot the low round of the tournament at the Hyundai - an eight-under 65 - and finished a respectable tied 13th.

Also fourth in the McGladrey Classic (another short, seaside course) in November, Gay is worth a punt at 40/1.

Finally, have a wager on Matt Every at 66s.

The Oasis fan (he even called his son Liam!) led for three rounds here in 2012 before feeling the pressure and slipping to sixth after a closing 72.

He also closed 2012 with three top sevens in his final seven starts and one of those came at the McGladrey (short par 70). Add in a 2012 third place at the Mayakoba and he fits the profile for success here.

Best bets

2pts e.w. Brendon de Jonge at 40/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Brian Gay at 40/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Matt Every at 66/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)

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