Portugal Masters Betting Tips – Thursday 15th October 2015

There is plenty to play for in this week’s Portugal Masters. In the penultimate tournament of the regular European Tour season there are players needing ranking points to make it to the Finals Series events and others who need to secure their cards for next season. The field this week is very competitive so although this lacks the star quality of some of the weeks to come, this is still an event that will take a very good performance to win.

The Portugal Masters has always been played at the Oceanico Victoria Golf Club in Vilamoura so many of the players will be very familiar with the par 71, 7,209 yard course. It is a track that often throws up some very low scores and with the weather looking to be set fair throughout the week, we could be in line for something of a birdie-fest. Certainly players like Martin Kaymer, Bernd Wiesberger and Soren Kjeldesen can go seriously low as can many other of those competing.

What will it take to put together a low round at Vilamoura? Firstly the players need to keep it out of trouble. There is water in play on around half of the 18 holes and the fairways are littered with bunkers. Secondly, while the greens are comparatively large, it is important not to miss on the wrong side as there are plenty of slippy downhill putts that will catch even the best putters out.

Martin Kaymer is one of the biggest stars in the field this week. The two time major champion has endured rather than enjoyed this season but he has shown some glimpses of returning to his best recently. The German made a playoff in the Open d’Italia but couldn’t stop Rikard Karlberg from winning. Some of the bigger names in European golf have only featured briefly since the end of the PGA Tour season but this will be Kaymer’s fourth event since failing to make the FedEx cup playoffs so he’s in good nick, is perhaps the best player in the field and he shot a 61 round here once so back him at 12/1 with Coral.

Soren Kjeldsen is playing some of the best golf of his life at 40 years old but he has proven to be a frustrating player to bet on. Last week he failed to take the chances he had to trump Matthew Fitzpatrick much like he did on home soil at the Made in Denmark. This is another course that should suit Kjeldsen but with him on the metaphorical naughty step for punters, don’t back him to win but have a bet on Kjeldsen to finish in the top 10 at 11/8 with Ladbrokes.

Paul Dunne has been enjoying his very brief time as a professional golfer. After shooting to fame at the Open this summer, Dunne has performed well in his first couple of events as a pro and quietly made it through the first stage of the European Tour Q School earlier this week. He’ll enjoy the test here and clearly loves testing himself against the best so he could be a good each way option at 66/1 with BetVictor.

British Masters Betting Tips – Thursday 8th October 2015

The British Masters returns to the European Tour this week after a seven year hiatus. It was always a popular event but with its rebranding courtesy of new sponsors Sky Sports, this looks to be a tournament that will grow in terms of prestige as the years go by. Sky have signed up some big name golfers to host the event at courses that are important to them. The first host is Ian Poulter who is proudly presenting the Marquess Course at Woburn Golf Club.

Poulter is a member at Woburn and will be hoping to use any local knowledge he has to good effect. Unfortunately for the man who has often been the hero for the European Ryder Cup team, his form this season has been patchy at best so it would take a big change in fortunes for him to win this week.

The Marquess Course plays a little over 7,200 yards and is a par 72. That means it is by no means the longest on the European Tour but some of the holes are very testing. The real challenge here is keeping the ball on the narrow fairways because they are lined with hundreds and hundreds of tall trees. We’re going to see some embarrassing chip outs this week but we could also see some low scores if the players can get to grips with the tricky greens.

If accuracy is very important at Woburn then Francesco Molinari should have a good chance. He ranked as the most accurate driver on the PGA Tour this season and should be able to keep the ball out of trouble. He’ll need to be solid with his approach play to give himself the best chance of making birdies. The Italian managed that for three rounds at Wentworth earlier on in the year but in the end had to settle for fifth place. Good form at Wentworth should be an indicator of having a good chance this week so get involved on Molinari at 20/1 with BetVictor.

There are a number of English players in the field who could have a good week here. Among them are Ryder Cup winners and players who have won tournaments all around the world. But, away from the likes of Luke Donald, Lee Westwood and David Howell, the Englishman who looks to have the best shot at winning this week is Andy Sullivan. The 29-year-old picked up his first two wins on the European Tour this season and he’s turned in some other strong performances. A solid driver of the ball, Sullivan should have what it takes to come good again at odds of 66/1 with Ladbrokes.

Woburn looks and plays quite a bit like Wentworth. The player who wins this will have to show the same strengths needed there so it’s worth looking at players who did well at the BMW PGA Championship this season. The winner there, An Byeong-Hun, has been quiet since so add the ever popular Miguel Angel Jimenez to your betting options. He keeps surprising us and defying age, looks to have what it takes to go low and is available at tempting odds of 60/1 with Betfred.

Presidents Cup Betting Tips – Thursday 8th October 2015

The Presidents Cup takes place in Korea this week in a reduced format from recent years. With one team made up of the best players from the USA and the other from the best from every country outside of Europe, this year’s tournament could be a very tightly contested match.

In recent years this has been a very one sided tournament. Since its inception in 1994, the USA have won nine times and only lost it the once. After much lobbying from the International team, there has been one match taken off each of the four team sessions and it will now take only 15 and a half points to win. The aim is to make the Presidents Cup as competitive as possible and along with the strength of this year’s International team the tournament organisers could well get their wish.

Jason Day is the player who the USA will have to stop. Before Jordan Spieth won the FedEx Cup so impressively, Day was the number one player in the world and after a couple of weeks off, he will be expected to win his fair share of points. As well as Day, Adam Scott and Louis Oosthuizen have won major championships while Branden Grace, Danny Lee and Hideki Matsuyama have all had good seasons. The problem for the International team is team bonding. Although many of them compete against each other on the PGA Tour, they need to foster a sense of team unity to compete against Team USA.

The Americans have plenty of world class talent to call up this week. Spieth will of course take many of the headlines but Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson and Zach Johnson have all been brilliant at times this season. In fact, everywhere you look through their team there is quality and plenty of match play experience. After the Americans’ poor performance in the Ryder Cup last summer, they will look to learn lessons this week that they can take into next summer.

The event will be held at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Incheon, South Korea. A 7,380 yard test from the tournament tees, the course is a par 72. It presents many different challenges but in match play, it all comes down to what your opponent is doing so the characteristics of the course matter less than normal.

The USA team are the clear bookies’ favourites for this year’s Presidents Cup. The best odds you can get on them to win yet again is the 8/15 that Coral are offering. They may not look like massive odds but they are fair given the relative strengths of the two teams.

In the top American market, Spieth is right at the top of the field at 4/1 across the board. However, Phil Mickelson’s odds really stand out. A veteran of many Ryder Cups and Presidents Cups, Mickelson’s aggressive game is just made for match play. While he may have had a poor season by his standards, he can come good for his country (he owes them after his outburst at Gleneagles last summer) at odds of 14/1 with Coral.

Alfred Dunhill Links Championship Betting Tips – Thursday 1st October 2015

The European Tour continues to get stronger as it builds towards the climax of the Race to Dubai and this week it is time for the ever popular Alfred Dunhill Links. The event actually comprises two tournaments, the first is a bona fide European Tour event with a prize purse of more than £3m and the second is pro-am event that runs at the same time. Some of the biggest stars in the world of golf will compete alongside celebrities including sports stars, actors and musicians.

The Alfred Dunhill is one of the biggest tests of links golf there is. Each player in the field will play a round at the Old Course at St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns, three of the most historic courses in Scotland. Many players in the field will be making their second trip to St Andrews this year as the Open was held there back in July and although Zach Johnson isn’t here this week, 10 former major champions are, showing the strength of this week’s field.

As the tournament is stretched over three courses the organisers have been able to cram in a huge number of players and that’s even before considering all the amateurs. From a betting perspective this can make the Alfred Dunhill Links a difficult tournament to predict but there is one key to take into account when choosing players to bet on – previous links form. Only those who can deal with the blustery conditions up in Scotland, can keep the ball out of trouble and avoid the pot bunkers littered around the courses will have any chance of winning this week. It is also important to take temperament into account as the pace of play can be dramatically altered when playing with amateurs.

One player who ticks all the boxes for success this week is the South African, Branden Grace. The 27-year-old has had a good season on both tours which included two wins on the European Tour and he won this event back in 2012. He can shape the ball both ways to deal with the wind and has good imagination with his short game. The bookies fancy him to at least go close again this time around but you can still get a very fair 18/1 with Coral about him which looks a very good price.

Luke Donald will have flown in to Scotland feeling as confident about his chances of winning a tournament as he has for a long time. This season has seen the former world number one return to form although he desperately needs a win to confirm that he is truly back in business. With his brilliant short game and ability to deal with even the most horrible weather, Donald has a great chance to win at 28/1 with Coral.

The final player to back this week is another Englishman, Eddie Pepperell. The 24-year-old has firmly established himself on the European Tour having graduated through the Challenge Tour and he was close to winning his first event on the big stage at the Irish Open at Royal County Down. That showed he can get it around a very difficult links course in testing conditions so have an each way bet on him at 50/1 with Ladbrokes.

European Open Betting Tips – Thursday 24th September 2015

The European Open was a well-regarded event on the European Tour but has not been included on the rotation for six years. It makes its return this week but at a new venue. For so long it was an event held in the UK and Ireland but this year’s renewal takes place at the Golf Resort Bad Griesbach in the south east of Germany.

Bad Griesbach is one of the best facilities in Germany with six courses spread over the property and the championship takes place on the track designed by legendary German golfer Bernard Langer. Langer is in the field this week as he looks to take advantage of all his local knowledge but there are plenty of other big talents capable of winning this event. With the finals for the Race to Dubai just around the corner some of the most popular players on the European Tour are back and looking to find their best form.

One of those who has made the move from the PGA Tour to the European Tour recently is Charl Schwartzel. The South African has won tournaments all over the world including the 2011 Masters showing that he can do it against the very strongest competition. The field for this week’s European Open may not be major quality but it contains other major winners as well as Ryder Cup players and players who have won on Tour this season. Schwartzel has all the power needed to do well around the 7,200 yard par 71 course and the rest of his game is in good nick, so back him to get his first win for over 18 months at 18/1 with BetVictor.

The only player who is ranked as a better shot of winning this week with the bookies than Schwartzel is Bernd Wiesberger. The Austrian may not quite have the pedigree of Schwartzel but he has competed well at major championships and on the PGA Tour so his quality is unquestioned. The 29-year-old has three European Tour wins including at this year’s Open de France which showed he could win on a difficult golf course. Wiesberger is one of the most powerful players on Tour let alone in the field this week so he’ll be able to reach more par fives in two than most and will be hitting comfortable iron shots into the par fours so he just needs to take his chances with the putter to come through at odds of 16/1 with Betfred.

Paul Lawrie has only played a handful of events on the European Tour this season but he’s shown very good form in them. At 46 it could be easy for people to write off the popular Scotsman but he’s shown that there are plenty of years of good golf left in him yet. His worst finish in a regular Tour event this year was the tied for 29th that he managed at the BMW Championship and the field may be strong this week but it’s not quite at that level. Betfred’s 45/1 really is a good price for Lawrie as he hits the ball a surprisingly long way and hits a very high number of greens in regulation so make sure to get on at that price.

Tour Championship Betting Tips – Thursday 24th September 2015

All the attention in the final week of the FedEx Cup playoffs will once again be on East Lake as the 30 top players in the rankings tee it up for a shot at the trophy and the $10 million bonus that comes with it. Technically any of the 30 can win the big prize but in reality it would take a very unlikely set of circumstances for Harris English, who is 30th in the rankings, to win the whole thing.

East Lake is an interesting course. Having opened in 1904, it was completely changed by Donald Ross in 1913. It remained a well-regarded course until many of its members moved to the nearby Atlanta Athletic Club and it became almost forgotten about. In 1993 those who still held a soft spot for East Lake took it upon themselves to revamp the whole place and since 2004 it has been the permanent home of the Tour Championship.

East Lake was once regarded as something of an easy course for the best players in the world but that changed when the greens were re-laid. The new Bermuda grass made putting, and subsequently scoring, much more difficult so only those who have a good four days with their putter have any chance of making it to the top of the leaderboard.

The bookies are very clear in who they think will win this week, the new world number one, Jason Day. The Australian’s recent run of form is the stuff of dreams. Not only has he won four of the last six tournaments he’s entered, some of them have been at a canter. A number of players attempted to challenge his lead at last week’s BMW Championship but he had done the damage early doors and just needed to ensure he made no mistakes over the weekend to get the win. Last year Billy Horschel showed how important it is to come to the Tour Championship in good form so it would be no surprise at all if Day won once again at odds of 10/3 with Bet365.

Day may be the best player in the world at the minute but he will face some very stiff competition for the FedEx crown. Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Justin Rose are all fancied to have good weeks by the bookies, but the two players who look most likely to push Day all the way are Henrik Stenson and Rickie Fowler.

Fowler has one of the key lines of form for this tournament, he’s already won a play-off event at the Deutsche Bank. That was his third win of a very successful season that could just end in the best possible way. If he keeps the ball out of trouble off the tee and putts well he’ll look overpriced at 12/1 with Coral.

Stenson has yet to win all season but his consistency has hauled him to the top five in the rankings going into this week. The Swede hits a higher percentage of greens in regulation than anyone else and won at East Lake on his only outing here so back him to win at 10/1 with Betfred.

Open d’Italia Betting Tips – Thursday 17th September 2015

As the FedEx Cup playoffs move ever closer to their final event the European Tour is starting to ramp up ahead of its own finals series, the Race to Dubai. The strength of the fields have steadily been improving and that is certainly the case for the Open d’Italia this week. The Tour’s best players have begun to trickle over from America as they need to both discover their best form and make sure that they play enough events to qualify for the finals events.

The Golf Club Milano is the host venue of the Open d’Italia for the first time since 1990. That means that a number of those taking place have been in Milan for a number of days already as they try to play enough practice rounds to ensure they feel familiar enough with the course to have a good chance. Those who have never played here before will find a very tight tree-lined course with some incredibly difficult tee shots which require threading the ball through some ludicrously narrow gaps. The par 72 track plays at almost 7,200 yards. There are holes where the longer hitters will have an edge but in the main it is all about staying out of trouble here and putting the ball in the right parts of the greens.

The bookies’ favourite for this week is also the home favourite, Francesco Molinari. Statistically there isn’t a more accurate driver of the golf ball in the game so he won’t be phased by even the most daunting of driving holes. In 2006 Molinari won his home
Open for the first (and so far only) time but, cheered on by the passionate galleries, he’ll have more than enough positivity to add to his tally of three wins on the European Tour. As well as finding the fairway more often than not, Molinari is excellent at hitting greens in regulation but he will need a good week with the putter to come home at 14/1 with Betfred.

Matthew Fitzpatrick is looking very close to securing his first win on the European Tour. The young Englishman has got four top 10 finishes since May as he has combined his very good ability off the tee with a solid short game. His ability to put the ball on the greens always serves him well and as long as he keeps his ball out of trouble he’ll once again be there or thereabouts. The bookies clearly feel he’s got a good chance but the 25/1 that Bet365 are offering looks a good price.

Ben Evans has had some very good results in the past few weeks. The Englishman is not exactly a household name but he’s finished in the top 12 positions in the last two weeks and although the field has improved this week he has the game to keep that sort of form going in Milan. Evans is one of the biggest hitters out there this week so if he makes sure that he doesn’t put himself in any trouble he can take advantage of hitting shorter irons into the greens than most. At 175/1 with Bet365, Evans looks like a great outside bet at each-way terms.

BMW Championship Betting Tips – Thursday 17th September 2015

We all had a break from the madness of the FedEx Cup playoffs last week as the players were given a rest before getting right back into the thick of the action at Conway Farms on Thursday. At the end of the BMW Championship the field will be more than halved as only 30 of the 70 players teeing it up this week will make it through to the Tour Championship next week.

As ever at this stage of the FedEx Cup, the field is a mixture of the finest players in the world and those who have found form at the right time. The PGA Tour have made some alterations to the way that points are distributed in the playoffs but there are still many more points available in these final four events than at any other event of the season. So even those players who find themselves at the bottom of the pile going into this week can win the $10 million prize at the end of it all by winning twice in the next fortnight.

Conway Farms is hosting the BMW Championship for the second time. In 2012 it became quickly clear that being wayward off the tee is deadly to any player’s chances here. The long fescue grass will tangle around anything that missed the fairways by too much and although the par 71 course is fairly long at around 7,200 yards the winner here will be decided by accuracy rather than power.

After finishing in the top five in every major last season, Ricki Fowler has kicked on again this year. His two wins this season have been huge, the first coming at the Players Championship (the so called fifth major) and the second last week at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Time and time again we have seen players who hit form at just the right time lift the FedEx Cup and Fowler could be the latest in that line of talent. He’s got the sort of accurate play with his driver and irons that is needed at Conway Farms so back him to record back to back wins at 16/1 with Bet365.

Jim Furyk looks very well placed for another strong week. The veteran American has based his whole career around a tight, accurate game but sometimes struggles to keep pace with the bombers who are becoming increasingly numerous at the top level of golf. His longevity is testament to the way he cleverly places his ball in the right position which allows him to hit the ball close to the hole. Furyk has already won this year and he holds the course record here having shot 59 in 2012 so must be included in your bets at 20/1 with Ladbrokes.

Zach Johnson is another player who has based his career around course management accuracy rather than trying to hit the ball 300 yards plus off the tee. He famously won the Masters without hitting any of the par fives in two shots and won this event when it was last hosted at Conway Farms. Johnson is 25/1 with Bet365 which looks too big about a player who won the Open Championship this season and who clearly likes playing in this part of Chicago.

Walker Cup Betting Tips – Saturday 12th September 2015

This weekend sees the best amateurs from Great Britain and Ireland try to regain the Walker Cup against the best amateur players from America. The Walker Cup is essentially the Ryder Cup but for players who have yet to turn professional. In recent years it has been contested between players who have gone on to be household names and win major championships. This year’s crop of promising players will all be hoping to emulate the likes of Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler, for whom the Walker Cup was a major part of their golfing apprenticeship.

This year the host venue is the iconic Royal Lytham & St Annes. Founded in 1886, the course offers one of the truest tests of links golf and as such it is included in the rotation for courses that host the Open Championship and has also hosted the Ryder Cup twice. Despite not being the longest course, it is incredibly difficult. The conditions and the presence of 200 bunkers – many of which are in positions that can only be described as evil – make it very tough to get up and down should the players’ approach shots miss the green.

The bookies are finding it incredibly difficult to separate the two teams. Despite the withdrawal of the excellent Sam Horsfield from the Great Britain and Ireland team having a negative impact on their chances, you can still back the home team at 6/5 with Coral while the US team are a top priced 10/11 with Bet365. The USA are considered slight favourites because they comfortably won the 2013 Walker Cup at the National Golf Links of America by 17 points to nine and because of the highly competitive collegiate golf set up in the States.

The American team lost the last time the Walker Cup was held away from American but they won back in 2007 when a team including Fowler, Johnson, Chris Kirk and Billy Horschel won at Royal County Down, so the USGA know how to prepare teams to play well away from home. This current team includes some very strong talent and they look to have enough to defend the trophy at 10/11 with Bet365.

As well as betting on the winner of the event, many bookies will be offering betting on the individual matches. There are foursomes and singles matches to get involved in if you want an in-play bet during the action but the best markets to get involved with before the off are the top American and top GB & Ireland player markets.

The favourite to be the highest points scoring American is Bryson DeChambeau. The 21-year-old recently recorded the incredibly rare feat of winning both the NCAA Division One Championship and the US Amateur title in the same year. He caused a bit of a stir in doing so because, unusually, his irons are all the same length but he makes it work for him and he looks a good bet at 9/2 with Coral. DeChambeau was pushed hard at the US Amateur by Irishman Paul Dunne. He rose to prominence at this season’s Open Championship where he was tied for the lead on Sunday and that links form makes him a good bet to be the top GB & Irish player at 5/1 with Coral.

KLM Open Betting Tips – Thursday 10th September 2015

If we’re being honest, the last couple of weeks on the European Tour haven’t exactly been a great advertisement for European golf, as it tries in vain to compete with the excitement of the FedEx Cup playoffs on the other side of the Atlantic. This week though, all eyes will be on the European Tour as it returns to form with the KLM Open. The break in the action in America certainly helps but so does the stellar field that has been assembled to compete around the championship course at the Kennemer Golf and Country Club, just outside of Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

Kennemer was originally designed by Harry Colt, the man who also designed Wentworth, but nine more holes were added subsequently offering the members three different loops of nine to play. The players this week will play a composite of all three nines and while there are subtle differences in feel, it will offer a links style test. The course is by the seaside bringing wind very much into play but at a shade over 6,500 yards, there are low scores out there even for the shorter hitters. That will be good news for golf legend Tom Watson who is playing this week. Even at the age of 66, Watson has a chance of shooting a score under the par of 70.

Sat at the top of the bookies’ leaderboard this week is the multiple major champion and Ryder Cup winner, Martin Kaymer. The 30-year-old German would not be playing here had he made it through to the latter stages of the FedEx Cup playoffs but he had a poor season on the PGA Tour and so, after a break, he is trying to play his way back into form ahead of the Race to Dubai. Kaymer has had low points in his career before and battled back from them so he’ll be mentally strong enough to put his recent troubles behind him and therefore looks a great bet at 10/1 with BetVictor.

Another player who has come back from an extended lean spell is Soren Kjeldsen. The 40-year-old Dane went over six years without winning before he picked up the Irish Open title at Royal County Down in May. That showed that he has all the tools necessary to deal with blustery conditions at a tough course as did his performance at the Made in Denmark which surely would have ended with a win had he putted better on the final day. You cannot shake Kjeldsen off due his consistency and he should be there or thereabouts at 35/1 with Bet365.

Joost Luiten will be the man who the Dutch fans feel has the best chance of providing a home winner this week. Luiten won this event in 2013 and must certainly be fancied to have a chance of taking his tally of European Tour wins to five this Sunday. His ability to find fairways and hit a high number of greens in regulation means he is never too far away from the top of the leaderboard and at a course that he clearly loves, he should be added to your betting slips at 20/1 with Coral.