Met Eireann might be convinced that Ireland will avoid any potential hurricanes this week but the oracle tells me he’s intent on making it rain regardless. Will you join him in some Dutch courage?
Lee Westwood / Image from Getty Images
Lee Westwood 18/1
Comes to The Dutch off a T12 in Switzerland and T2 in Denmark where brilliant irons have been the highlight of the last fortnight. Putting continues to be Lee’s Achilles heel but a T3 on this course last year, as part of five top-10’s from 10 appearances in the event, say he’s a good each way shout this week.
Nacho Elvira 40/1
Played twice on the course with no form but impressive greens in regulation and putting stats combined have seen him build in form from a T24 at the Nordea Masters to a T18 in the Czech Open and solo 4th last week in Crans-Sur-Sierre. I can’t ignore the trend so Nacho makes my five.
Jaokim Lagergren 50/1
I’ve a soft spot for Joakim after watching World Cup soccer in Ballyliffin with him this summer. A winner on Tour this year in Sicily, things went somewhat awry in the final group on Sunday in Ireland where he slipped from 2nd to T12. Having only played this event twice he only knows The Dutch as the venue and improved from T20 in 2016 to a T9 last year. I’m sure he’ll be eyeing this week up for a tilt at the title.
Phachara Khongmatwai 66/1
Having seen his Kiradech Aphibarnrat become a global star, Phachara is rapidly becoming the next great Thai golfer on the European Tour. At just 19 years old he has impressed greatly of late with a magic putter that has yielded a T9 in the Czech Republic, T12 in Denmark and a T8 in Switzerland last week. A debutant on the course but it should suit him.
Mike Lorenzo Vera 28/1
Poor old Mike looks like he has the weight of the world on his shoulders out there and he came agonisingly close in Crans last week before finding the water on the last and settling for 3rd. Stats wise for irons and putting combined, the Frenchman was head and shoulders above anyone and given that he was T8 here in 2016, he’ll be looking forward to the week.
Long Odds Shots
Speaking of non-smilers, Scotty Hend will blast everything a mile off the tee and see what happens but something tells me he’ll have a good week from 100/1. He knows the course, has a T4 from 2016 and will do it all his own way.