EUROPEAN TOUR: Nordea Masters
The undulating, par 71 Hills GC hosts a European Tour event for the first time so little is known about how the course will play. However as a coastal area some breeze is expected to blow during the tournament so it may pay to support players who can handle these conditions.
OUTRIGHT: Marcus Kinhult, 0.5 pts win and place 40/1 (1/5 odds 6 places)
Local youngster Kinhult has caught the eye on a few occasions this season, most recently in the French Open which he led for a spell before falling away to finish a still highly respectable tied fifth. That experience of contending for a lead ought to stand him in good stead the next time he gets into that position and with his local knowledge and ability to play in the breeze that might well happen this week.
PGA TOUR: Wyndham Championship
The tight, tree-lined Sedgefield course is used for the eleventh time in succession for this year’s event. The 7,100 yards long, par 70 course was originally designed by Donald Ross and recently extended with new Bermuda greens put in place. The fairways are generally tree-lined with dog-legs at 12 of the holes, water comes into play on seven holes and the greens are small and undulating. On the evidence of past years, players capable of driving it straight shooting plenty of birdies have the best chance of winning here.
OUTRIGHT: Webb Simpson, 0.5 pts win and place 14/1 (1/5 odds 6 places)
Even though there is little in the way of value in these odds it’s hard to ignore Simpson’s claims to this event with course form reading 1st in 11, 22T in 12, 11T in 13, 5T in 14, 6T in 15 and 3rd in 17. Add into the mix he is arguably a better player these days than he was in the most recent years given that he snapped up The Players Championship in some style in May, has numerous top ten finishes this season and has recently recorded three top twenty finishes in much stronger fields than this week’s.
OUTRIGHT: Shane Lowry, 0.5 pts win and place 25/1 (1/5 odds 8 places)
With the FedEx Cup race to qualify for the top 125 places now coming to the wire Lowry sits outside the cut-off point at a lowly position of 139th. So he will need a big week to make it to the play offs. Two top twelve place finishes in recent weeks in Canada and last week’s PGA Championship suggest he is up for the fight and last year’s tied seventh place finish here adds weight to his chances.
OUTRIGHT: Harold Varner, 0.5 pts win and place 50/1 (1/5 odds 8 places)
Like Simpson, Varner has a bank of solid recent form to call on with top ten finishes at the Greenbrier and the John Deere, followed up with a tied 17th place in Canada three weeks ago. His local connections to this neck of the woods add some appeal as does his tied 10th place last year with a first round 63 really catching the eye.