The European Tour moves to Morocco this week for a low-on-quality renewal of the Trophee Hassan II, and with little course form to go on finding the winner isn't going to be easy. Here are the team's quintet of each-way selections...
Paul Krishnamurty: Back Ross McGowan @ 100/1
"In six starts there this term, he's registered four top-12s, including two co-sanctioned events. Recent Greens In Regulation figures also bode well for this accuracy-orientated track and its small greens."
*Each-way terms: 1/4 odds, 5 places
Dan Geraghty: Back Eddie Pepperell @ 40/1
Following Danny Willett's wonderful Masters victory there was again much talk of the infamous 'nappy factor'. Purveyors of said factor are often keen to look for other ways golfers can be inspired, one such example is victories of close friends and peers. This week in Morocco is Eddie Pepperell's first start since his former England Juniors friend Andrew 'Beef' Johnston's fine victory at Valderrama. Pepperell has written an excellent blog post on Johnston's victory here; I really do think it could prove the inspiration he needs to kickstart his season and he can go well this week on a course that could suit (Driving Distance looks of limited importance).
Paul Krishnamurty: Back Ross McGowan @ 100/1
Against what amounts to very weak opposition for a European Tour event, Ross McGowan is worth a punt at massive odds. The best part of a decade ago, McGowan was regarded as a top prospect and challenged fairly regularly in stronger company than this. Injuries ruined those early expectations, but the Englishman has carved out a decent career on the Sunshine Tour and, with similarities between this week's conditions and South Africa, could be in his element. In six starts there this term, he's registered four top-12s, including two co-sanctioned events. Recent Greens In Regulation figures also bode well for this accuracy-orientated track and its small greens.
Joe Dyer: Back Ben Evans @ 125/1
Let's be honest - even by European Tour standards this is a staggeringly weak affair. Staggeringly weak. But in between the non-winners, out-of-forms pros and no-hopers, someone will lift a trophy on Sunday afternoon. The market leaders are not tempting me in the slightest this week so I am pinning my hopes on Ben Evans whose long, straight driving and accurate iron play should suit the Moroccan test. The Englishman doesn't bring great recent form to Africa, missing a pair of cuts in China but can conceivably go well in different conditions. We have changed courses for this year's tournament but 2015's Trophee Hassan yielded a top 10, suggesting the change in environment can bring about a change in fortunes. At 125/1 I am happy to take a flyer on that happening.
Steve Rawlings: Back Andrew Johnston @ 20/1
I wouldn't ordinarily recommend backing someone that won last time out and especially one who celebrated as heartily as Andrew Johnston did after his maiden win at the Open de Espana three weeks ago, but so weak is this week's line-up on the European Tour and so well did 'Beef' play at Valderrama , that he looks worth chancing. Even at odds of just 20/1. Accuracy looks the key to unlocking the Red Course at Royal Golf Dar Es Salem and accuracy is Johnson's forte. He ranked number one for Driving Accuracy and number one for Greens In Regulation in Spain and if he comes close to that sort of form here he might just go in again.
Mike Norman: Back Dylan Fritelli @ 40/1
In such a weak field, at a venue that hasn't been used for six years - and even then this week's course could play very different to how it did in 2010 - all I want to do is back a golfer who is in form, regardless of what level he has been playing at. For me, there is no substitute in this game for confidence gained through performing well. Like Paul's pick, Dylan Fritelli has been mixing Tours but he's in fine form currently. He recorded two top 20 finishes on the European Tour in his homeland of South African at the start of the year, and he has since finished 4th, 7th, 4th, 2nd, and 11th in five of his last six starts. Hailing from the Rainbow Nation, the Kikuyu fairways will be very familiar to 25-year-old Fritelli and I can see him continuing his recent good form with an excellent showing here.
For golf previews, tips and analysis ahead of every event on the European and PGA Tours please visit our dedicated Golf section here on betting.betfair.
2016 Season P/L to date: + £114.16
- 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