Here are our golf betting tips for second staging of the BMW Masters, starting this Thursday over a Jack Nicklaus designed course on the Masters course of Meilan Lake Golf Club, Shanghai, China. There is a 78 man field for the event, 7 major champions, 4 former world number 1’s (Donald, Kaymer, McIlroy, Westwood) and 5 European tour Order of Merit winners show that this is indeed a high class field.
As with many of the newly constructed Chinese courses, the Masters course does not want for length measuring in at 7,607 yards it is designed to test the top players and their modern equipment. A classic Par 72 layout the Nicklaus designed course was used in the 2011 Shanghai Masters which has effectively been a trial run for this event, (Mcilroy triumphed in that 30 man field that year in a playoff win over Anthony Kim) and then Peter Hanson took a one shot victory over Mcilroy last year. Like many Nicklaus courses finding your way onto the correct part of green while steering clear of the well placed hazards (both watery and sandy) will be the key, while last year putting was the deciding factor; Martin Kaymer had stunning ball striking stats last year but ranked a mere 50th in putts per round, leading to an 11th place finish.
Recent hot ball striking and putting should be a good indicator, I have looked at people who can play in the wind (could be breezy according to forecast) and who perform well on open stadium style courses. Just 78 Runners this week with the bookies paying 5 places at ¼ odds this is a good weekend for a bet on the golf-
Rory McIlroy- 8/1 Win, Coral- Open a new Coral account by clicking this link and get a free £50 bet.
Tremendous course form finishing 2nd here in the last 2 years, closed with a 67 last week to finish second; so finding some form. Due to some off course hiccups and his poor form this year, he is relatively lightly raced; this could be of great benefit at this time of year as others who have had a tough schedule begin to fade. Most confident I have been about McIlroy's chances for some time.
Jamie Donaldson – 33/1 EW, Betfred- Open a new Betfred account by clicking this link and get a free £25 bet.
Won twice in the last 2 seasons on very ‘open’ courses, even if they appear totally different, with wins in Irish Open at Royal Portrush and in Abu Dhabi earlier this season. Finished 6th last time out in Portugal and 16th here last year, 33/1 looks a solid each way punt for a player with nothing to lose who should enjoy the layout. He ranks 33rd on the European tour in putts per round, while also hitting an average of 12.2 greens per round, solid.
Peter Uihlein- 33/1 EW, William Hill- Open a new William Hill account by clicking this link and get a free £25 bet.
I was an early convert to the Peter Uihlein fan club- after he replied to a couple of my tweets! (Shallow I know, but he was dead polite on twitter so that won me over straight away, a bonus that he ended up tearing up the European tour this season). Much like Donaldson he sits up high (38th on tour) in putts per round while hitting a might impressive 12.7 greens per round, also hugely powerful which could be a factor in the wind.
Luke Guthrie – 80/1 EW, Winner SPORTS – Open a new Winner account by clicking this link and get a free £25 bet.
Finished T5th last week in the Shriners on the PGA tour, and on my little cheat sheet on strengths of players to watch, for the start of last season, it simply said Guthrie= Ball Striking and Putting; should be a great match for this venue. Realistically it would be a heck of an effort for him to win, but with his playing characteristics and recent form, a place is perfectly possible in a small field like this.
George Coetzee – 80/1 EW, Sporting Bet – Open a new Sporting Bet account by clicking this link and get a ‘Risk Free’ £50 bet.
Coetzee has been out for months with a wrist injury and normally I would be careful backing a player after such an injury lay off, but not this time. Big George is blessed with a bunch of natural talent, and is built like a tank so assuming he has not rushed his recovery I expect him to return to form quickly. It would be typical of a talent like Coetzee to win in these circumstances; when he has been runner up so many times in the past when he has carried in form and expectation, none of that this week, just some decent course form (6th last year) and plenty of hope!
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