Matteo Manassero.jpg

A new sponsor and new venue for this year’s Italian Open, and the change of venue this year has brought on one of my ‘theories’ (I know, but they work out sometimes!!), see below for that and my picks for this fine event; showcasing some home starts such as Molinari and Manassero.

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The Event

First of all my aforementioned theory, having looked at the course previews/gallery etc  on the web, I believe this course is going to play very similar to the Wentworth Club.  It appears to be a tricky but relatively short (by modern standards) version of Wentworth, reachable Par 5’s are mixed with tough par 3’s and some testing 4’s with natural water hazards coming into play on a number of holes.  It will be interesting to hear the player feedback prior to the event, but looking at the information I can find, the course looks to be a similar test to Wentworth- a tree lined layout which will require significant precision and shot-making, plotting a way to score rather than being able to simply blast your way around.

The Italian Open was held here in 1999 when Dean Robertson was victorious, with a young Padraig Harrington 2nd, when you look at the stats for that week the top 5 players (excluding Russell Claydon) all featured high up in terms GIR and Driving accuracy; suggesting that precision rather than power will be the key.     

The course has been extended since 1999 but the players hit it further so that should be of little consequence, the weather is expected to be dry with light winds and temperatures of around 16°C for the 4 days; based on this I expect a similar winning total to 1999 at -17.

To make my selections this week I have followed my Wentworth ‘theory’ and factored in some recent form, good luck!!  

Main Picks

Matteo Manassero– 14/1 WIN

Our BMW champion is playing on home soil here, steady form the last 2 week’s finishing in the top 30 odd, but it's really the fact that he finished 3rd in his home open last year and the fact that he took the BMW in style in May.  In much better form than the other big name Italian Molinari, who is playing at his home club, but is tough to back after a couple of MC’s and at the same price, if not shorter than Matteo.       

Gregory Bourdy – 30/1 EW

A winner just a few weeks ago in the Wales Open, the 2010 course at Celtic manner is far more exposed than this course but does have some similarities, you want to be finding the fairways to have any chance of finding some tough pins, and there is plenty of trouble lurking greenside if you are off your game.  Bourdy also performed well at Wentworth in May, finishing an impressive T12th with a closing 68.

Alejandro Canizares – 66/1 EW

4th at Wentworth in May, 4th in the recent European Masters just 2 weeks ago is enough to sell me on Canizares at 66/1, despite a lowly 67th place finish last time out.  Somehow I always feel confident backing Canizares because he can really putt, so if his long game is operating to any standard, he can shoot a low number when others would be struggling to shoot level par.     

David Drysdale – 100/1 EW

Extremely consistent form from Drysdale, just one MC in his last eleven events, just one Top ten in that spell but is surely due a Top 5 which is all we need at 100/1!  Finished 19th at Wentworth this year and 10th in 2012 so a good record there suggests he should cope well this week (boy I hope my theory is right!), should give a us a good run for our money with the course set to suit his excellent ball striking.

 Simon Khan –250/1 EW

A long shot here but you know why – Yep, he has a great record at Wentworth and I am banking on that to bring him out of a fairly horrid run of form, mc, mc, wd in his last 3 events does not inspire confidence I admit.  He opened up with a 67 last week before a poor second round, so it is not all bad news; we are getting a big price for a player who can perform with no to little form if he takes a liking to the course and surroundings.

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Thatsbettingtips Staff

Thatsbettingtips Staff

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