Daily Fantasy Golf Course Primer: CIMB Classic
The PGA Tour heads overseas to Malaysia for a no-cut event in what is the second week of the new tour schedule.
The CIMB Classic has been held at TPC Kuala Lumpur for four years now, and that gives us some data to dig through regarding the course and how it plays.
So, what's unique about the course? Who plays well here? What stats matter? Let’s dive in.
Course and Tournament Info
TPC Kuala Lumpur is a short par 72, spanning just over 7,000 yards. It’s been a course that has given up plenty of par-breaking scores, as well.
|Year||Difficulty Rank||Course||Par||Yds||Avg Score||Avg O/U Par|
|2017||44||TPC Kuala Lumpur||72||7,005||70.298||-1.702|
|2016||47||Kuala Lumpur G&CC||72||6,985||69.619||-2.381|
|2015||30||Kuala Lumpur G&CC||72||6,985||71.299||-0.701|
|2014||28||Kuala Lumpur G&CC||72||6,967||71.965||-0.035|
With the course playing so easy, the top scores have been low. Justin Thomas won last year at -23 and in 2016 at -26. Ryan Moore won the two years prior at -17 and -14, respectively.
Moore and Thomas are pretty dang different when it comes to driving distance and play style, so which stats might help us identify the next winner?
Strokes gained: tee to green and strokes gained: putting can always be factored into your research, but these stats are the ones that have correlated strongest with scores at this course in the past.
|Key Stats for the CIMB Classic at TPC Kuala Lumpur|
|Par 5 Scoring|
|Birdie or Better Rate|
|Strokes Gained: Tee to Green|
Taking advantage of the par 5s has been a big part of scoring well at this course, according to the data. Three of the four par 5s are 539 yards or shorter, and driving distance is also tied into taking advantage of those easy birdie chances.
Birdies in general, with how low the scoring can go, are crucial. With 72 holes guaranteed because of the no-cut format, even a bad score overall can lead to a decent fantasy weekend if there are enough birdies involved to negate the bogeys.
Course History Studs
Justin Thomas ($10,500 on FanDuel), of course, qualifies, as he has won both of his starts at TPC Kuala Lumpur.
Hideki Matsuyama ($9,900) has four consecutive top 25s here since 2013 and has improved his finish each year: 25th, 21st, 5th, and 2nd.
Anirban Lahiri ($5,600) held the 54-hole lead last year and wound up T3. Between the PGA and overseas events, Lahiri has played TPC Kuala Lumpur 10 times in the past seven years, including a win at the Malaysian Open in 2015. Lahiri considers this a bit of a homecoming.
Kevin Na ($7,100) was 2nd in 2014, 3rd in 2015, and 29th in 2016 at this course. Scott Piercy ($5,800) was 10th last year and 7th the year prior. Rafa Cabrera Bello ($8,500) has three top 10s and four top 25s in the past six years at this course.
Gavin Green ($4,500) is a local to the course and won his most recent start, the Taiwan Masters, and second the start prior. Green finished 69th at the CIMB in 2016 but has played this course five times in the past two years.