Hero Indian Open Each-Way Tips: 66/1 Jayden Schaper can clinch winning breakthrough

Golfer Jayden Schaper
The Player Course looks like a neat fit for the young South African Jayden Schaper.

The DP World Tour is all set for the Indian Open at DLF G&CC this week. Rasmus Hojgaard heads the betting but Matt Cooper looks elsewhere for his three selections with the Betfair Sportsbook paying seven places...

  • Jayden Schaper can improve on last year's T13th

  • Aussie David Micheluzzi is on the rise

  • Swede Simon Forsstrom is a steady fit


  • One morning in 2017, I woke early and lay in bed knowing that I had to climb a mountain soon.

    I craved crisp air. I needed solitude. I wanted the exquisite pleasure of aching limbs.

    I'd initially got a Sunday drive out to Snowdonia in mind but, before 12 noon, I'd booked a trip to the Himalayas.

    As an example of a situation escalating quickly, it's pretty stellar.

    The procedure was so rash (and entirely unlike me) that I didn't notice that the Indian Open was taking place at the end of my holiday so I could have easily detoured from Kathmandu to Delhi to watch it.

    I don't recall but maybe, even subconsciously, it had something to do with the event's move from the old-time splendour of the Delhi GC to the wacky rollercoaster ride that is the Player Course at DLF G&CC - a relocation that is another example of rapid escalation, albeit in terms of golf course design.

    Consider that Delhi GC was originally built between the 20th century world wars and is a traditional test, on flat ground, between the trees, with the faded grandeur of tomb and temple ruins behind tees and greens.

    In contrast, the Player Course is a very modern test, with earth-diggers adding elevation to the land surrounding quarries and lakes, and it has a backdrop of humdrum high rises.

    Holes at Delhi tend to be, in golfing parlance, right there in front of you.

    In contrast, the par-4 17th at DLF is more like a magic eye poster with an elevation change, rocky background and design that requires a zoned-out focus to identify the target.

    All of this makes for a course that many players haven't taken to, but there are worse things to fret about in this world and the four editions of the championship it has hosted have provided plenty of drama.

    The first was won by home favourite, the good ship SSP Chawrasia; in 2018 Matt Wallace overcame fellow Englishman Andrew Johnston; Scott Stephen Gallacher plotted his way to victory in 2019; and last year we had a German tussle in which Marcel Siem prevailed over Yannik Paul.

    Pay heed to the preview by Steve Rawlings (link below) who notes that the capacity for big numbers on this course (for both a round and on any particular hole) offers up the possibility of significant volatility.


    Main Bet: Jayden Schaper 1pt each-way @ 66/1

    The South African Jayden Schaper was actually a pick for the column last year when it was noted that this amateur star in his homeland is fond of a Gary Player design.

    For example, he first served notice of his promise on the DP World Tour when finishing second in the 2020 Alfred Dunhill Championship at the Player-designed Leopard Creek.

    He then added a series of top 30s on the Sunshine Tour at other Player creations - Gary Player CC, Blair Atholl and Fancourt.

    He's taken a particular shine to Blair Atholl, carding a 65 when T12th there on the Sunshine Tour and adding ninth and fifth when it has hosted the South African Open in the last two runnings.

    Indeed, last December he was the co-leader after 54 holes and a week later he was seventh back at Leopard Creek.

    He opened this season with four consecutive top 10 finishes since when he's gone eight starts without a top 20.

    But he did close last week in Singapore with a 66, his best score since that excellent run and, up against a field that won't scare him, on a test that suits, he's a nice price.

    Oh, and the 23-year-old wasn't too far short of a return last year - he was T13th.

    Another good week is well within him.

    Back Jayden Schaper each-way @ 66/167.00

    Bet here

    Next Best: David Micheluzzi 1pt each-way @ 50/1

    I was keen on the Aussie David Micheluzzi ahead of last week and was consequently cringing when he carded a third round 66 to grab a one-shot lead heading into Sunday.

    Alas, for him, he closed with a 73 for seventh.

    David Micheluzzi in Singapore.jpg

    It was, however, another sign of his potential and he'll have fresh memories of what to do and what not to do if he gets back into a similar position this week.

    The 27-year-old, the 2018 winner of the prestigious Australian Master of the Amateurs, hit his pro straps, following Covid disruption, at the end of 2022 with a first win on the PGA Tour of Australasia and he had made it four wins by November 2023.

    He won that circuit's Order of Merit and with it a DP World Tour card.

    He still has limited experience at this level but he's landed top 20s in the Made in Himmerland, Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, Australian PGA Championship and Bahrain Championship.

    Since missing the cut in Qatar his form is heading in the right direction: T45th in the New Zealand Open, T17th in The National Tournament (both down under) and then that promising effort last week.

    I also like that, when T17th at Himmerland last year, he carded a fine 62 in the third round.

    The four winners on the Player Course have all logged a top 20 at Himmerland and have all gone sub-66 there. It makes a bit of sense because both courses require hitting to odd and awkward spots at times.

    Back David Micheluzzi each-way @ 50/151.00

    Bet here

    Final Bet: Simon Forsstrom 1pt each-way @ 70/1

    After winning last May's Soudal Open the Swede Simon Forsstrom has failed to land another top 20. But last week he spent the first 36 holes in the top 10 and he can ride that wave.

    This time last year he spent all week in the top 20 of this tournament and closed with a 67 for ninth place.

    And he also closed with a 67 at Gary Player CC for T24th in the Nedbank Challenge - his best finish since the win and also up against one of the better fields in that stretch.

    Oh, and his lowest round anywhere since the win? A 65 at Himmerland.

    Back Simon Forsstrom each-way @ 70/171.00

    Bet here

    Now read Steve Rawlings on the Hero Indian Open.


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