Tour Championship 2023 day 3 betting tips and predictions

Tour Championship 2023 day 3 betting tips and predictions
Aug 24, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Sungjae Im tees off on the 16th hole during the first round of the TOUR Championship golf tournament at East Lake Golf Club. Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports/Sipa USA - Photo by Icon Sport

Collin Morikawa and Viktor Hovland remain tied atop the Tour Championship after 36 holes at 16-under par.

The pair shot 6-under rounds of 64 Friday to share the lead. Hovland is trying to win in back-to-back starts and take home his first FedEx Cup title. Morikawa is in search of his first win since the 2021 Open Championship and can also win at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta for the first time.

Chasing them is world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler, who trails by two strokes. The University of Texas product began the tournament with a 10-under lead.

In this article, we’ll provide two betting predictions ahead of day three for head-to-head matchups.

Tour Championship day 3 tips: Matchups

The following picks are for the 18 holes on Saturday. Starting strokes are not included. In the event of a tie, the bet will result in a push.

Sungjae Im over Corey Conners @ 5/6 (-120) on Unibet

Many pundits were extremely bullish this week on Im winning the entire Tour Championship without starting strokes. After 71s (1-over par) each of the first two days, that more than likely won’t happen.

However, Saturday is a great chance for him to bounce back and win a head-to-head matchup against Corey Conners.

Im was a popular pick thanks to being a course fit at East Lake Golf Club. Last year, without starting strokes, he finished in second place. The South Korean has played the Tour Championship four times and has had a better finishing position than Conners in all three appearances when they both played.

Results at East Lake (without starting strokes)

  • Im: 2nd (2022), 23rd (2021), 12th (2020), 15th (2019)
  • Conners: 25th (2022), 17th (2021), 23rd (2019)
  • Im’s average finishing position: 13th
  • Conners’ average finishing position: 21.7

From 2015-2022, Im has also averaged nearly 1.5 more strokes gained per round at the track than his Canadian opponent.

Strokes gained average per round at East Lake

  • Im: 0.29 in 16 rounds
  • Conners: -1.08 in 12 rounds

The 25-year-old Im is ranked first on the PGA Tour this season in round three scoring. He’s averaging 1.22 strokes lower than Conners in the statistical category.

Third-round scoring averages

  • Im: 67.90 in 21 rounds (ranked first)
  • Conners: 69.12 in 17 rounds (ranked 29th)

In their past three shared events, the BMW Championship, the FedEx St. Jude Championship and the Open Championship, Im has beaten Conners twice and tied him once.

Xander Schauffele over Collin Morikawa @ 5/6 (-120) on Bet365

Collin Morikawa has been on a tear this week at East Lake. He opened with a 9-under par 61 and followed it up with a 64 on Friday. At some point, he has to slow down. Even if he slightly taps the brakes, I still like Schauffele’s near-money odds to defeat him in an H2H matchup on Saturday.

Schauffele has been the king of East Lake since he won in his debut in 2017.

PGA Tour data analyst Ron Klos compiled the stats for the 30 players in this week’s field. Schauffele has performed better than all them over a collective span of six years.

Schauffele’s results at the Tour Championship (without strokes added)

  • 2022: 6th
  • 2021: 3rd
  • 2020: 1st
  • 2019: 2nd
  • 2018: 7th
  • 2017: 1st
  • Average finishing position: 3.3

Entering this week, Morikawa had made three appearances at the Tour Championship and finished worse in each start than Schauffele (without starting strokes).

Morikawa’s results at the Tour Championship (without strokes added)

  • 2022: 19th
  • 2021: 28th
  • 2020: 7th
  • Average finishing position: 18

Obviously, Morikawa has been on fire the first two days, outdueling Schauffele on Thursday and tying him on Friday, but leading up to the event, Schauffele owned a significant advantage in strokes gained average per round at the track.

Strokes gained average per round at East Lake (2015-2022)

  • Schauffele: 1.73
  • Morikawa: -0.47

This season, according to Data Golf’s true strokes gained total stat, Schauffele’s averaged positive strokes gained in all 21 events he’s fully participated in (not counting the withdrawal due to injury at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in January). Morikawa has also been impressive, gaining strokes in 20-of-24 events.

The former San Diego State Aztec, Schauffele, has averaged more strokes gained than Morikawa in four of their past five events.

Tournament Schauffele’s true SG totalMorikawa’s true SG total
BMW Championship2.791.29
FedEx St. Jude Championship1.342.09
The Open Championship2.170.30
Travelers Championship1.970.33
U.S. Open 2.812.56

Schauffele also owns a better third-round and total scoring average than Morikawa this season.

Third-round scoring averages

Schauffele: 69.44 in 18 rounds (ranked 47th)

Morikawa: 69.69 in 16 rounds (ranked 61st)

Scoring average

Schauffele: 69.225 in 73 rounds (ranked fifth)

Morikawa: 69.655 in 73 rounds (ranked 11th)

The 5/6 (-120) line in favor of Schauffele winning the matchup certainly is worth it, in my opinion, thanks to him being the horse for the course at East Lake.

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