Winner’s Share – €218,512
Course – Delhi GC (7, 014 yards par 71)
Our 2014 Picks – New Tournament
Golf betting is a funny thing – after a pretty barren start to 2015 things had certainly started to pick up with a few near misses, namely Ryan Palmer and Lucas Glover over in America. But an unlikely star, Andrew Dodt (125/1), gave us our first win of the season. Not forgetting Nick Watney’s near miss over in America! But as more golf gets watched and players start to find their feet, betting starts to become much more fruitful as the season wears on.
The Thai Classic was new to the European Calender and so is the Indian Open this week. Played on a municipal course, it’s not exactly a mouth watering field compared to say the Northern Trust Open. Nevertheless there are odds for this just like any other event and we are actually very confident having seen the initial markets.
The Delhi GC is relatively short and it’s only defence against low scoring this week is the tightness of the fairways. Rough is non-existent here but there are plenty of trees. Everywhere you look narrow fairways keep being talked about. Then you have to look regular events that are held here, of which there are 3. The Panasonic Open, SAIL-SBI Open (Both Asian Tour) and the Bilt Open (PGA Tour of India). So this means we have plenty of guys who have a lot of course form to look at! Rashid Khan, Anirban Lahiri, SSP Chawrasia, Siddikur, Jyoti Randhawa and Mukesh Kumar have all had at least SIX top 10 finishes here. Some people played in all 3 of the events in 2014.
We always have to take a lot of these high finishes from the Asian Tour/Indian PGA players with a pinch of salt because of the quality of their fields. Until they have proven themselves on the European circuit (i.e. Lahiri) it’s hard to ever be certain how they will fare against a Miguel Angel Jimenez in a final pairing on day 4, for instance. Still, the players with tremendous course form will obviously be at a huge advantage.
DON’T FORGET – Our weekly competition with renowned magazine Golf Monthly continues, take a peak at the end of our selections to see how our stakes have been distributed this time.
You can follow us throughout the week on Twitter @downthe18th for the latest news, betting + banter. Please get in touch and let us know what you think of our picks and who you fancy as well!
Shiv Kapur (28/1 Various)
Shiv is one of the best exports of India, having been born right here in New Delhi. With 2 Challenge Tour titles and 1 Asian Tour, he’s a name we see frequently on the European circuit. He even finished T23 at last year’s US Open.
2014 was hardly one to write home about with his best finishes coming at the Tshwane, French and Hong Kong Opens – all top 20. And again this year, nothing spectacular but his T11 at the Thailand Classic was his best finish on the European Tour since the Avantha Masters back in 2011! So what better way to follow that up with a trip home. He will be buzzing coming to his home event. He last played here in 2013, 3 times, which he finished 4th, 4th and 13th.
Statisically speaking he was the real deal last week – 3rd driving accuracy, 7th putts per GIR, 23rd GIR and averaging 290yards off the tee.
Jyoti Randhawa (50/1 Coral)
This guy got a brief mention in the preview with his outrageous course form. 8 top 10’s including 2 wins on this course in the last 10 years no less. So when we looked into the Thai Classic stats a bit more, it was very interesting to see he finished 15th ranking 15th driving accuracy and 3rd putts per round. His form before that wasn’t particularly special but coming to a course he knows like the back of his hand, it looks like he could be peaking at the perfect time.
Rashid Khan (50/1 Stan James)
It was a close call between Khan and Richard T Lee, but the far superior course form was enough to plump for the former. The Indian has 6 top 10’s around here including a win at last year’s SAIL-SBI Open. And we can’t forget he is only 24. That means he was playing this course when he was 16. Not to mention this is his home course anyway, so he was playing it a lot earlier than 16! There is no doubting he will go onto bigger and better things.
Of late, he hasn’t been particularly impressive with a top 10 here and there. But last week, despite a missed cut, he did actually rank 5th GIR. Putting, as Phil would say, was embarrassing. But Khan will undoubtably know these greens better than the club captain.
And if you are one for storylines, it was Rashid’s birthday on Sunday…
Lee Slattery (80/1 Coral)
This is more of heart than head bet if you know what we mean. If you follow the European Tour regularly you will know what a solid performer Slatts is. And to see him at these odds in this quality of field is definitely worth a pop.
Despite a MC in Abu Dhabi, he last appearance before that was a 3rd at the South African Open where he finished 1 shot off Schwartzel and Sullivan. That week he ranked 18th driving accuracy, 3rd distance and 7th putts per round. This field is a lot weaker than that week and Lee will definitely know this is a huge opportunity to get his first European Tour win since the Madrid Masters in 2011.
Damien McGrane (125/1 Bet365)
The Irishman is one of those who takes advantage of the smaller events. His close 2nd at the Russian Open last year was an example of that.
This year he hasn’t impressed but has made 4 of 6 cuts. And last week he actually played really well tee to green – 18th driving accuracy and 20th GIR. On the greens was a different story. But that can change and he’s never going to be the perfect pick when he’s at such high odds.
One thing we love was his 2nd here in 2008, finishing 2 shots behind course stalwart SSP Chawrasia. That was obviously 7 years ago and we can’t read anything into the stats, but, he did rank 4th driving accuracy, 3rd putts per GIR and 2nd putts per round for that week.
Every week we’re running a weekly betting competition on both Tours with esteemed magazine Golf Monthly. It is a bit of fun between us and them to see who has the better tipsters! We have £10 to put on each tournament and will write up a weekly post for their site detailing the horrors we are sure to endure throughout the year – so keep an eye out.
It will also (for the first time from us at DownThe18th) show some sort of staking plan we have for out bets. Obviously, this isn’t the exact stakes we will put on our players, some weeks we won’t even enter a couple of our picks, but at least it can be shown roughly where our thoughts are money wise.
Our £10 against Golf Monthly will be as follows –
£1.75 e/w on Shiv Kapur at 30/1
£1.00 e/w on Jyoti Randhawa at 40/1
£1.00 e/w on Rashid Khan at 40/1
£0.75 e/w on Lee Slattery at 50/1
£0.50 e/w on Damien McGrane at 100/1
Each way bets ¼ odds for top 5 finish. Prices sourced from Paddy Power
Find the Golf Monthly Preview here (http://www.golf-monthly.co.uk/news/tour-news)
Current Standings after 5 weeks
DownThe18th Golf Monthly
European Tour: £24.30 European Tour: £-40
PGA Tour: £-12.63 PGA Tour: £47
Total: £11.67 Total: £7.00
DownThe18th leads by: £4.67