When to bet
By 6.15pm on Friday (shotgun start)
Where to watch LIV Golf Orlando
Live on LIV Golf Plus app from 6.15pm on Friday
Steve Palmer’s LIV Golf Orlando predictions
3pts each-way 18-1 general
1pt each-way 100-1 Betfair, BoyleSports, Power
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There are at least 18 players who are using LIV Golf Orlando as a warm-up for next week’s Masters as golf’s civil war prepares for hostilities to resume at Augusta.
Not since the Open at St Andrews in July have PGA Tour stars and LIV Golf players properly mixed, but next week it will happen again. There will be six LIV players at the Masters Champions dinner next Tuesday – Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson, Sergio Garcia, Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed and Charl Schwartzel.
Steve Palmer’s top tip
Charles Howell 18-1
Rumours are rife that Augusta-born 43-year-old Charles Howell will be rewarded for his stellar play on the LIV Golf circuit by getting a last-gasp Masters invitation. Augusta bigwigs are in full control of invites and may attempt to diffuse some of the inevitable tension surrounding this year’s tournament by welcoming Howell.
Chucky Three Sticks, as he is known, has been producing some of the best golf of his career. He turned LIV Golf Mayakoba into a procession, closing with a 63 to win by four shots, then finished fifth in LIV Golf Tucson last time out.
LIV Golf Orlando presents a golden opportunity for Howell to lift another trophy and show Augusta chiefs that he could be a Masters contender. Howell has lived in Orlando for more than 20 years and knows Crooked Cat better than most of this week’s field.
Next best bet
Sam Horsfield 100-1
A two-pronged staking plan of Orlando-based golfers is recommended. Sam Horsfield has lived there since the age of five, growing up close to Orange County National, and he was a superstar junior in the Sunshine State.
Horsfield won the Florida State Amateur at the age of 16, starred at Florida State University, then went on to become a DP World Tour champion, winning three times on that circuit. At the age of 26, the Manchester-born powerhouse is seeking a LIV Golf breakthrough.
Given how much course knowledge Horsfield is carrying this week, he should be comfortable and inspired by the venue. His best PGA Tour efforts came at Bay Hill and Florida inevitably brings out the best in him.
Dustin Johnson, successful at PGA Tour Q School at this week’s venue, was 13th in LIV Tucson and appears to be improving for every run. Johnson is preferred to Cameron Smith, who was labouring with a wrist problem in Tucson, but Howell and Horsfield are the best value options.
Crooked Cat course guide
Course Crooked Cat, Orange County National, Orlando, Florida
Prize money $20m ($4m to the winner)
Length 7,297 yards
Par 71 – three par-fives; 11 par-fours; four par-threes
Highest-ranked players in field (world ranking in brackets) Cameron Smith (5), Joaquin Niemann (26), Abraham Ancer (30), Thomas Pieters (43), Talor Gooch (52)
When to bet By 6.15pm on Friday (shotgun start)
When to watch Live on LIV Golf Plus app from 6.15pm on Friday
Time difference Orlando is five hours behind the UK and Ireland
Course type Parkland
Course overview Elevation changes are a feature of Crooked Cat, with rolling fairways and large, contoured greens. The 2007 PGA Tour Q School was staged there, featuring Dustin Johnson (tied 14th) and Brendan Steele (tied 100th)
Weather forecast Sunny and warm, with light to moderate breezes
Type of player suited to the challenge Generous fairways and large greens will encourage the powerhouses to attack
Key attribute Power
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