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Porsche European Open: Pieters is FRL pick

Belgian Thomas Pieters
Belgian Thomas Pieters can start fast
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Dave Tindall makes a case for a trio of players to go well in round one at Green Eagle Golf Courses...

"The Belgian is on the move again after winning the Czech Masters and backing it up with T12 at last week's European Masters. He shot opening 67s in both events."

Each-way terms: 1/5 odds, 6 places

Weather forecast for Hamburg, Germany: It's a bright start before rain starts appearing in the forecast in the afternoon. Perhaps of more importance is that wind speeds start at 9mph but hit 15mph for the p.m. starters.

First-round leader history at Green Eagle Golf Courses:

2018
66 Bryson DeChambeau (08:00)
67 Romain Wattel (08:00), Mike Lorenzo-Vera (12:40), Joel Stalter (07:50), Benedict Staben (09:30)

2017
66 Julian Suri (13:50), Richard McEvoy (08:30)
67 Alexander Levy (08:00), Charl Schwartzel (08:00), Stuart Manley (08:00), Chris Paisley (12:50)

Strategy: It's a two-tee start and history says 08:00 is a good time to get going! The weather forecast suggests morning may be best.

Pieters can end in pole

Well look who's heading out at 08:00!

Thomas Pieters looks too short in the outright market at 14s but I'll play him at twice the odds for FRL.

The Belgian is on the move again after winning the Czech Masters and backing it up with T12 at last week's European Masters.

He shot opening 67s in both events while two starts earlier the former Ryder Cup man hit a first-round 64 in the Scottish Open.

It's his first look at Green Eagle but this lengthy flat German track doesn't look as if it requires much learning at all.

Pieters is 9th in Driving Distance this season and 13th for Birdies but it's his current upturn in form which really draws me in.

Playing alongside Xander Schauffele should also act as inspiration.

Kitayama can KO rivals on day one

It needs a bit of mental digging around if asked which players have won twice on the European Tour this season.

But Kitayama is one of them after victories at the Mauritius Open and Oman Open.

Admittedly, he hasn't done much since but this looks a good venue to light a spark under him again.

The big-hitting American is 3rd in Driving Distance and should love having five par 5s to go at this week.

Only three starts ago he opened 68-68-65 at the Scottish Open while, looking at his Thursday scores this season, you'll find a 63 and a 64.

With a favourable tee-time (07:50), I'll roll the dice at 110/1.

Be daring with Waring

Well, not so daring really.

I've picked Paul Waring as my outright selection in the each-way column but like him for R1 too.

He averges over 300 yards off the tee (tick), is in the top 25 for Par 5 scoring (tick) and is in excellent form this season (two ticks).

While not the most consistent starter, he did hold the first-round lead at the Made In Denmark at the end of May and also led after 18 holes of last year's Oman Open.

Holding a piece of the day one lead at the 2017 Open de France means he's been FRL in three of his last 52 starts - a very decent strike-rate.

Waring warmed up for this week with a T20 in Sweden on his last start and is an industry-best 75/1.

Tee-time? 08:10.

Let's hope this weather forecast is right!

Dave's 2019 R1 leader P/L (based on £5 ew per selection)

Staked: £990
Returned: £1022.59
P/L: +£32.59

Dave Tindall,

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