There have been a few weeks without European Tour action but finally it's back and so, too, are the BB golf team with the following five each-way recommendations...
"Andy Sullivan has pedigree in the events one would expect to correlate with Oman. The Scottish and Irish Opens plus other coastal, wind-exposed courses - most notably the Portugal Masters - and all the big Gulf events. Sullivan has been solid either side of Christmas, registering top-25s on six out of eight starts, and made the top-20 here in 2018."
Paul Krishnamurty: Back Andy Sullivan @ 40/1
EW Terms: 1/5 Odds | 7 Places
Dave Tindall: Back Stephen Gallacher @ 125/1
Stephen Gallacher obviously enjoys playing in the Middle East given his ridiculously good record in the Dubai Desert Classic (two wins, a second, a third and a fourth). And with a links element to this week's course, it's a fair guess that the Scot could do well at Al Mouj too. The theory turns to reality when noting that Gallacher finished tied ninth in the inaugural edition in 2018, overcoming an opening 74. While the veteran didn't produce his usual high finish in Dubai this year, he did show some desert form again with tied 21st in the Saudi International last time, closing with a 66. The former Ryder Cup star won on the European Tour less than 12 months ago so, all in all, he looks a sporting bet at 125/1.
Paul Krishnamurty: Back Andy Sullivan @ 40/1
One man who is certainly overdue a win - or a place payout, for that matter - is Andy Sullivan, who won three times back in 2015 but hasn't managed to get it done since. There have been plenty of opportunities during that period, including numerous second places and other high finishes in elite company. He has pedigree in the events one would expect to correlate with Oman. The Scottish and Irish Opens plus other coastal, wind-exposed courses - most notably the Portugal Masters. All the big Gulf events. Sullivan has been solid either side of Christmas, registering top-25s on six out of eight starts, and made the top-20 here in 2018.
Steve Rawlings: Back Sebastian Heisele @ 150/1
After winning his fourth Pro Golf Tour event in April, Germany's Sebastian Heisele enjoyed an extremely successful season on the Challenge Tour last year, winning the Open de Bretagne in September before going on to finish second twice and third in China. That fine run of form has seen him return to the European Tour and after three solid starts in the Middle East, he looks a very fair price at 150/1 to step up at a venue he's played well at before. He missed the cut in this event two years ago but finished 17th and 16th at the Al Mouj Golf Course in 2016 and '17 on the Challenge Tour.
Joe Dyer: Back Alexander Bjork @ 70/1
There's a nice progression to Alexander Bjork's three tournaments in 2020 and, at 70/1, I think he represents a decent price against a middling European Tour field. After a stunning 2018 that yielded his only main tour win so far, the young Swede did not quite hit the heights last year but still put up some consistent numbers with a few top 20 finishes following his best result of a ninth at the Trophee Hassan. Bjork has form on the course with a 12th in 2018 and sixth on the Challenge Tour the year before, and has some notable results in this part of the world. After opening up 2020 with a tie for 69th in Abu Dhabi he has improved by around 20 places each week and is certainly capable of troubling the market leaders at a nice price.
Mike Norman: Back Matthieu Pavon @ 66/1
I think Matthieu Pavon is a very fair price at a joint-industry best 66/1 given he ticks a lot of boxes going into this 'weakish' European Tour event. The Frenchman certainly has recent form in the book, finishing T11 in both of his last two starts, the Saudi International and Dubai Desert Classic. The strength of those two fields were much stronger than the one that will tee off at Al Mouj on Thursday, and the course is a venue where Pavon has previously played well, finishing third in a Challenge Tour event in 2016. What's more, the 27-year-old's career-best form has largely come on links or resort-type courses, similar to the test he'll face in Oman. Top three finishes at the Scottish Open, Open de Portugal and Mauritius Open are all strong pointers to Pavon going well this week.
2020 Season P/L to date: -£25.00 (£5 e/w per selection)
- Saudi International - Gavin Green @ 55/1 - Place (Dave)
- Dubai Desert Classic - Tom Lewis @ 100/1 - Place (Steve)
- Abu Dhabi Championship - Bernd Wiesberger @ 35/1 - Place (Paul)
*2019 P/L: -£571.30
*2018 P/L: +£727.16
*2017 P/L: -£306.84
*2016 P/L: +£267.58
*2015 P/L: +£958.37
*2014 P/L: +£251.75