Steve takes a look at the three-man Top Spaniard market where he fancies the outsider of the three can come through...
"Backing Ollie at big odds makes sense to me. If the two more fancied players don’t shine, and that’s a distinct possibility, then merely making the weekend could reward Olazabal backers handsomely."
The key to making a few bob in these side markets is to take on the really short favourites when the betting is between just few participants and the one I really quite like this week is Jose Maria Olazabal to be the Top Spaniard...
The 1999 US Masters winner has been dogged by injury for much of the last decade but every now and again he shows signs of life and that was very much the case last time out when he finished inside the top-ten at the Hassan Trophee II on the European Tour. He went around Golf du Palais Royal in just 66 strokes on day four - a score bettered by no one in tricky conditions that day - and it might just be a sign of even better things to come for Ollie.
World number nine, Sergio Garcia, is obviously the man to beat but he's not been playing brilliantly of late. Sergio loves Riviera and he finished inside the top-five there back in February but that's his only top-30 finish this year and he hasn't got a fantastic Augusta record either. He missed the cut for the fifth time in his career here last year and if he doesn't get off to a good start I could easily see him sulking and again having a weekend off.
Ollie's only other Spanish rival is Miguel Angel Jimenez, who last year finished a career best fourth, but I fancy he'll perform far worse this time around and he's worth taking on. I wrote at length in the preview about how year after year, players underperform 12 months after a high finish at Augusta and I wouldn't be in the least bit surprised if that happens with Jimenez.
Backing Ollie at big odds makes sense to me. If he plays like he did last time out he could finish above a fairly competitive Garcia and Jimenez anyway but if the two more fancied players don't shine, and that's a distinct possibility, then merely making the weekend could reward Olazabal backers handsomely.
Jose Maria Olazabal @ anything above 8.07/1
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