The Sony Open in Hawaii will tee off on Thursday and is the 14th event of the 2021 PGA TOUR season and the first full-field tournament of the new calendar year. The par-70 Waialae Country Club on the island of Oahu in Honolulu has been the host course since the tournament’s inception in 1965.
It’s the second consecutive tournament in Hawaii, following last week’s Sentry Tournament of Champions on Maui.
Harris English’s birdie on the first playoff hole gave him a victory over Joaqim Niemann at the Plantation Course at Kapalua. It was English’s first PGA TOUR win since 2014.
Both players will make the 120-mile trip to Waialae, but many of the top players have already made their way to the lower 48.
Among the 144 players in the field are 57-year-old Vijay Singh, 56-year-old Davis Love III, 54-year-old Jerry Kelly, defending champion Cameron Smith and the 2020 PGA Championship winner, Collin Morikawa.
The top player in the futures odds is Webb Simpson at +1100, the only player in the top 10 in the Official World Golf Rankings entered in the Sony. He’s ranked eighth and is coming off a 12th-place finish in the 2020 FedEx Cup standings.
Simpson has yet to miss a cut in six 2021 season events and finished in the top 10 in both the U.S. Open and the Masters. He’s coming off a tie for 17th last week, but he won twice in 2020. The former U.S. Open champion is playing with a calm confidence.
Patrick Reed, with odds of +1200, is always dangerous if he gets hot with the putter. He’s played just four tournaments in the 2020-21 season but hasn’t missed a cut. He finished in a tie for 13th at the U.S. Open and a tie for 10th at the Masters.
After putting himself in contention at 11-under-par through two rounds last week at the Sentry, he failed to break 70 on the weekend and settled for a tie for 21st. The 2018 Masters Tournament champion is 11th in the Official World Golf Rankings and finished the 2020 season in sixth place in the FedExCup.
Reed missed the cut at last year’s Sony Open and will probably be looking for revenge on the Waialae layout. He also needs to start picking up FedEx Cup points since he’s currently 50th in the season-long race.
Daniel Berger, at +1600 odds, is coming off a disappointing 10th-place finish at the Sentry after closing with a one-under-par 72. He entered the final round at 18-under, just three shots off the pace, but couldn’t get anything going on the final 18 holes, managing just three birdies.
The three-time Tour winner has yet to miss a cut in the 2021 season, with the Sentry his best finish. He finished tied for 38th in last year’s Sony Open but went on to post seven top 10 finishes, including a win at the Charles Schwab Challenge. Berger finished the season in seventh place in the 2020 FedEx Cup standings.