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.