Tommy Fleetwood was in philosophical mood after the Nedbank Golf Challenge on Sunday. The Englishman missed the chance to sew up the Race to Dubai but said he would not complain about being under pressure to win such a prestigious title.
Instead, he’s going to focus on every shot and try to end an incredible year by seeing off the challenge of Justin Rose and Sergio Garcia. Fleetwood’s got a decent enough record in the DP World Tour Championship and with a healthy head start he should win the Race to Dubai at 2/5 with Betfair.
Earth Course to Provide a Fitting Finale
Ever since the Race to Dubai’s inception it has come to an end at Jumeirah Golf Estate’s Earth Course. The Greg Norman-designed layout can stretch to more than 7,800 yards and plays to a par of 72. It’s a stern test for the 60 players who qualified through their Race to Dubai rankings and is more than up to the task of ending the European Tour season.
The distance of the Earth Course, coupled with the generous fairways means the longer hitters have a real advantage. However, players who struggle to follow up long drives by hitting greens in regulation will find themselves languishing towards the bottom of the leaderboard. Throw in an incredible finishing stretch that includes an island green, a creek in play on three shots and a big grandstand and you’ve got the potential for some late drama.
Course Specialist Hatton to Capture the Limelight
While Tommy Fleetwood has rightly been lauded for his incredible season so far, he’s not the only young English player to kick on over the last 12 months. Like Fleetwood, Tyrrell Hatton has won twice this year and he actually goes into the DP World Tour Championship two spots higher in the world rankings.
There is still a feeling around Hatton that he’s a very good European Tour player who cannot yet be considered world class. That’s clearly unfair. Hatton’s been scrapping for wins against top class opponents since a very young age and is a match for anybody on a course that suits him. With finishes of 2-13-6 in his three appearances at the Earth Course, this is certainly a course that fits Hatton’s game and he looks good value at 16/1 with Bet365.
Enigmatic Dubuisson Can Start Fast Again
After playing a key role in Europe’s 2014 Ryder Cup win, Victor Dubuisson looked to have the world of golf at his feet. Unfortunately, he’s rarely played his best golf in the three years since and has developed a reputation for pulling out of tournaments shortly before they get underway.
The saving grace for Dubuisson is that he tends to play well at tournaments where he has positive memories. He played very well in Sun City last week and can repeat the trick at the Earth Course where he’s secured three finishes of fourth or better. He’s unlikely to pull it all together to win but Dubuisson looks a solid option in the first round leader market where he is 33/1 with Ladbrokes.