After months of profit the each-way column slid into the red last week, but the team are undeterred and will be backing the following five for golfing glory at Sun City
"After three decades, the ideal skills-set for Sun City should be crystal clear - power off the tee, accuracy from tee to green and prolific par-five scoring. Tommy Fleetwood ticks all of those boxes and is finishing the season pretty strongly."
Paul Krishnamurty: Back Tommy Fleetwood @ 40/1
*Each-Way 1/4 odds, 5 places
Dan Geraghty: Back Thomas Pieters @ 25/1
The Nedbank's new slot in the European Tour calendar has the potential to elevate South Africa's 'Major' to new levels, but this week's event is starting on a bad footing; Rory McIlroy is missing his second finals event in succession, while Masters champion Danny Willett is having a mini crisis with his game. Such a prestigious event deserves a big name winner - it was winning the 2014 Nedbank that seemed to elevate the aforementioned Willett to new levels and I can see the tournament doing the same for European Tour youngster Thomas Pieters this week; the Belgian Bomber shares much in common with last year's winner Marc Leishman.
Paul Krishnamurty: Back Tommy Fleetwood @ 40/1
After three decades, the ideal skills-set for Sun City should be crystal clear - power off the tee, accuracy from tee to green and prolific par-five scoring. Tommy Fleetwood ticks all of those boxes and is finishing the season pretty strongly. In his last nine events, Fleetwood has hit nothing less than 72% of Greens in Regulation and only twice less than 80%. Those are outstanding numbers and he also ranks sixth amongst these for par-five performance. He closed well in Turkey last week with 67/68 and fared respectably well on both previous visits. If only the putter starts working, Tommy is well capable of landing a lucrative win before the season is out. Perhaps a change of continent can help in that regard.
Joe Dyer: Back Brandon Stone @ 150/1
There can't be a more excited golfer in this week's field than Brandon Stone, who has tweeted that it is a 'dream come true' to be teeing it up at Sun City. The young South African is hyped to be playing in his home country's 'major', and I can see him going well at a monster price. This has been a hugely impressive first full season on the European Tour for Stone, who won early in the year at the BMW SA Open and proved he can play away from South African with a runner-up spot in China and top-five finish at the high-quality Open de France. All his best results have seen him finish high up in the driving accuracy and distance stats and a good week with the driver will serve him well on the lengthy Gary Player-designed layout. I'm happy to overlook some middling to poor form in recent weeks as I think Stone will thrive back in the comforts of home and looks a big price to cap a great year with a very special result.
Steve Rawlings: Back George Coetzee @ 66/1
Having never finished outside the top-four here in six previous visits, Henrik Stenson looks like a bet to nothing at an industry-wide best price of 9/2 and I actually think that represents value but it's short enough for a column of this nature so I'm plumping for South Africa's George Coetzee at a much juicier 66/1 instead. The 30-year-old Pretorian sat second after round one on his last visit here in 2014 before dropped away to finish 16th but that does at least show he can play the course and that's not a surprise given how well he drives the ball. As highlighted in the preview, Driving Accuracy is a key stat here and George ranks 12th on the European Tour for that indicator over the last three months. He finished fifth in Turkey last week, despite a second round 73 that included a quadruple-bogey eight at the 10th hole, and he looks primed for another decent effort in his homeland where he's already won twice on the European Tour and a further six times on the Sunshine Tour.
Mike Norman: Back Scott Hend @ 80/1
Another weaker than expected field is in attendance for this week's Nedbank Golf Challenge and a number of players at the top of the market look a bit too short to me, not least the trio of big-name South Africans who haven't exactly been setting the world alight of late. At three times the price of Messrs Grace, Schwartzel and Oosthuizen I'm happy to take a chance on 80/1 shot Scott Hend. The Aussie has been in decent form all season and has three worldwide victories to his name in the last 12 months, and only two months ago was recording back-to-back top-five finishes on the European Tour. A T7 at the CIMB Classic on the PGA Tour three starts ago was another excellent effort and he backed that up with a respectable top-25 finish in Turkey last week. The negative is that this is Hend's debut at Sun City, but debutants have won the last two renewals of this event so perhaps we shouldn't worry too much, especially as this monster hitter from the tee should be well suited to this week's test.
2016 Season P/L to date: - £9.92
- WGC HSBC Champions, Henrik Stenson @ 22/1 - PLACE (Mike)
- British Masters, Graeme McDowell @ 33/1 - PLACE (Joe)
- European Open, Bernd Wiesberger @ 14/1 - PLACE (Steve)
- European Masters, Andrew Johnston @ 40/1 - PLACE (Steve)
- Made In Denmark, David Lipsky @ 55/1 - PLACE (Paul)
- The Open, Sergio Garcia @ 25/1 - PLACE (Paul)
- Scottish Open, Nicolas Colsaerts @ 40/1 - PLACE (Luke)
- Open de France, Thongchai Jaidee @ 60/1 - WIN (Joe)
- BMW International Open, Kiradech Aphibarnrat @ 80/1 - PLACE (Joe)
- US Open, Branden Grace @ 50/1 - PLACE (Mike)
- Nordea Masters, Nicolas Colsaerts @ 33/1 - PLACE (Dan T)
- BMW PGA Championship, Thomas Aiken @ 100/1 - PLACE (Dan G)
- Mauritius Open, Jeunghun Wang @ 16/1 - WIN (Dan G)
- Mauritius Open, Nicolas Colsaerts @ 28/1 - PLACE (Joe)
- Shenzhen International, Scott Hend @ 50/1 - PLACE (Joe)
- True Thailand Classic, Scott Hend @ 40/1 - WIN (Dan T)
- True Thailand Classic, Thomas Pieters @ 22/1 - PLACE (Dan G)
- WGC Cadillac Championship, Danny Willett @ 66/1 - PLACE (Paul)
- Perth International, Peter Uihlein @ 33/1 - PLACE (Steve)
- Tshwane Open, Dean Burmester @ 28/1 - PLACE (Paul)
- Dubai Desert Classic, Andy Sullivan @ 33/1 - PLACE (Mike)
- Abu Dhabi Championship, Thomas Pieters @ 50/1 - PLACE (Steve)
- Abu Dhabi Championship, Joost Luiten @ 66/1 - PLACE (Joe)
- South African Open, Christiaan Bezuidenhout @ 250/1 - PLACE (Dan G)
- Alfred Dunhill Championship, Joost Luiten @ 40/1 - PLACE (Joe)
* Total P/L for 2015 Season: +£958.37
* Total P/L for 2014 Season: +£251.75