Each-Way Betting

Open de France Each-Way Tips: 40/1 Otaegui can fly in Paris

Golfer Adrian Otaegui
Adrian Otaegui enjoys the Albatros Course at Le Golf National in Paris.

Ahead of the Ryder Cup the DP World Tour returns to the 2018 venue Le Golf National. Tom Kim heads the betting but Matt Cooper looks elsewhere for his three selections with the Betfair Sportsbook paying eight places...

  • Adrian Otaegui has strong course form

  • Good memories can fuel Nathan Kimsey

  • Yannik Paul a good fit for the test

The neat packaging of next season's DP World Tour into largely geographical swings is a nice reminder of the good old days.

Because in the early years of the European Tour, of course, it was essential that the players could negotiate the schedule by car or camper van with perhaps the odd flight thrown in.

So, for example, in 1972, there was a fortnight in Spain followed by mini swings that took in English seaside resorts, the Celtic nations, central Europe, England again, Scotland again, England for a final time and then two weeks in Italy.

Accidentally (I suspect) this week is the third week of a pre-Ryder Cup Swing.

After the Irish Open, at the 2006 venue for the biennial clash between Europe and the USA, and Wentworth, which hosted a forerunner of the match in 1926 as well as the 1953 edition, we get action from Le Golf National, host for the last renewal on European soil.

It prompts lovely memories of that tremendous week in Paris five years ago when the course not only limited American options in terms of width from the tee but also depth.

Le Golf has a long history of players producing records much like those created at TPC Sawgrass for THE PLAYERS Championship.

That is: some competitors like the place, others don't much - and even those who like it often have feast or famine form books packed with as many top 10s as missed cuts.

Alex Noren, for example, missed four cuts and twice failed to finish in the top 30 in his first seven visits - he then finished top 20 in five of his next six starts including victory in 2018.

Tommy Fleetwood missed the cut there five times in a row ahead of winning on his sixth visit.

Graeme McDowell's first dozen visits were pure boom or bust: six top 20s including two wins and six missed cuts.

Bernd Wiesberger was 7-for-7 at making the cut and Martin Kaymer 11-for-13.

In contrast, Alex Levy has one top 50 in nine tries (and that was only T35th) while Gonzalo Fernandez Castano and Alvaro Quiros had no top 30 in a combined 22 efforts there.

One family even typifies the trend: Edoardo Molinari has no top 30 in 11 starts, Francesco has 10 top 30 in his 13 appearances.

Both this course and Sawgrass are said to demand that everyone hits to the same places - it's something that frustrates those who seek to dominate a course from the tee and it also catches out anyone not playing well.

It's not impossible that a big hitter can thrive - Nicolas Colsaerts did so in 2019 and the slightly ragged Guido Migliozzi was sensational in triumph last year - but he'll need his long game in accurate shape to do so.

Main Bet: Adrian Otaegui 1pt each-way @ 40/1

It would not surprise me too much if Aaron Rai won this week and become another Le Golf National winner off a record book of missed cuts.

He was impressive when contending last week in Wentworth (the first year in three that the column didn't back him!) and he won the Scottish Open a week after contending in Ireland.

But he's a short price this week and first pick is the Spaniard Adrian Otaegui whose log book on Le Golf's Albatros Course is a neat curio.

His first three visits were abbreviated but on the last of those occasions he had been two back of the first round lead and the following year he was second on Thursday evening ahead of finishing T33rd.

He was the halfway leader when seventh in 2017, T12th (top 10 with 18 holes to play) in 2018 and T13th last year after another missed cut in 2019.

He's made the cut in eight of his last nine starts, a run that started with second at Bernardus and also included fourth at Galgorm Castle (also, T36th at Wentworth was also his second-best result there in eight visits).

This is all better form than ahead of his last win, in the Andalucia Masters 11 months ago, when he arrived at Valderrama off the back of scores of 80-79.

Back Adrian Otaegui each-way @ 40/141.00

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Next Best: Nathan Kimsey 1pt each-way @ 50/1

Back in 2017, in the middle of a rookie campaign on the DP World Tour that was largely a struggle, Englishman Nathan Kimsey carded a first round 66 at Le Golf National to sit second on the leaderboard.

He was still in the top five at halfway before slipping back to T38th.

Six years on, having a second crack at the main tour, he can make a stronger bid off the back of a promising year and a very fine week at Wentworth.

He's made 14 of 16 cuts this season and has frequently got his name on leaderboards.

In the co-sanctioned Barbasol Championship he even made extra holes before being denied a remarkable vault onto the PGA Tour.

He played last week's final round alongside Tyrrell Hatton and Jon Rahm, and the experience might give him another boost of confidence.

He carded 75 while they contended but he thrashed a nice blow into 18 and watched the conclusion of the event with his new friends afterwards.

Back Nathan Kimsey each-eay @ 50/151.00

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Final Bet: Yannik Paul 1pt each-way @ 25/1

Finally, I can't leave the German Yannik Paul out of the plan because I've a notion that he likes seeing shots framed by water and Le Golf National has plenty of that.


His first 72-hole top 10 at this level was at Infinitum's Lakes Course, he's finished T16th and eighth at The Belfry, T18th at Green Eagle, second at Amata Spring and DLF, and third at Ullna.

He also, rather more straightforwardly, finished eighth on debut at Le Golf National last year (and his only other visits, two of them, to France both reaped top 12s).

Back Yannik Paul each-way @ 25/126.00

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