Will This Week’s CME Group Tour Championship Produce Another Long-Shot Winner?

Posted on December 17, 2020

For the CME Group Tour Championship this week, bettors need to answer the question of which “Kim” they expect to come out on top. Will it be a favorite like Sei Young Kim or an outsider like A. Lim Kim in last week’s LPGA US Open?

Odds on the penultimate event of 2020 for the LPGA Tour look similar to the shortlist of favorites for the Open. In this unique year, performances have swung wildly from week to week.

Details of this year’s CME Group Tour Championship

For golf bettors, having a major in play the week before Christmas is a gift in and of itself. The LPGA’s tour best will all be in contention in this week’s last chance for players to earn points toward the CME Globe standings:

  • Dates: Dec. 17-20
  • Purse: $3 million/$1.1 million to the winner
  • Course: Tiburón Golf Club
  • Par: 72
  • Yardage: 6,556
  • Fairways/Roughs: Bermuda
  • Greens: Bermuda
  • TV: First three rounds on Golf Channel; final round on NBC

Not only is this event taking place in December unique, but it has a bigger field than normal. This year, the list of contenders is 70 strong, 10 more than the norm. Additionally, there will be no cut.

This is the ninth time Tiburón has hosted this event. All past winners from 2014 through last year are expected to hit the greens. Sei Young Kim, who won this event last year with an 18 under 270, currently has the shortest golf odds at IL sportsbooks.

There is a chance of some light rain in the forecast for the first round on Thursday. Other than that, the forecast calls for sunny skies and temperatures in the high-60s to low-70s.

Most of the top contenders this week played in the Open last week. That event stretched through Monday due to rain on Sunday. How that short rest might affect players is just one question bettors need to answer.

Kim or ‘Kim’ for the championship?

Last week, Korean golfer A. Lim Kim scored birdies on her final three holes to not only impress viewers but claim the Open win. Kim does not play on the LPGA Tour, however, so she isn’t in the field for the CME.

Sei Young Kim, who currently boasts the best scoring average on the tour, is the favorite at BetRivers, DraftKings, PointsBet and William Hill sportsbooks. As of the time of this article, FanDuel Sportsbook IL didn’t have markets for the CME up.

Kim put together consecutive wins prior to the Open and she has the tour’s highest rate for hitting greens in regulation. In the Open, however, she tied for 20th at six over.

Bettors wanting to take a flyer on an “A. Lim Kim” for the CME might consider Yealimi Noh. She leads the tour in birdies and holes under par despite playing the fourth-most rounds this year. The rookie, who tied for second a couple of weeks ago at the VOA Classic, currently sits +5,000 to win the CME outright at DraftKings.

This week, Sei Young Kim will try to prove that being a betting favorite on the LPGA tour isn’t a bad omen. If she falters, it may be another event that produces a long-shot winner.

Photo by Eric Gay / AP
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Chicago. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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