The European Tour heads to France this week for the historic Open de France. This one has been part of the Tour’s schedule since the tour’s inception in 1972 and although it was originally played at a different course each year, it is now regularly played at Le Golf National. A large prize fund generally draws a strong field and this year is no exception as Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and a host of other big names compete for a share of the 3 million euros on offer. This par 71, 7 300 yard course has seen some very low scores so expect much of the same this year. Whose score will be lowest come Sunday afternoon? Let’s try find out.
|Richard Green, course specialist: The Aussie lefty has a more than|
stellar record around Le Golf National and looks good value.
Lee Westwood 13/2
Martin Kaymer 14/1
Justin Rose 16/1
Graeme McDowell 16/1
Francesco Molinari 18/1
Retief Goosen 40/1
Branden Grace 66/1
Richard Sterne 70/1
George Coetzee 70/1
Thomas Aiken 140/1
JBE Kruger 140/1
Jaco Van Zyl 150/1
Branden Grace (66/1 a win, 16/1 a place)
Since turning pro in 2007 Grace’s star has been on the rise and this season he has really come into his own. His three wins this season have been the only three of his career and he currently sits 4th in the Race to Dubai. The issue with Grace is he is very inconsistent and you never know how he’s going to play. A 5th at the BMW PGA Championship was followed by a 51st and a missed cut, but I reckon this is the week he makes a comeback. At 66/1 the price is juicy so have a strike.
Francesco Molinari (18/1 a win, 9/2 a place)
After opening at 25/1 Molinari has shortened into 18/1 and this isn’t surprising. If he manages to pull off a win here he will guarantee himself a place in the European Ryder Cup team and what better motivation is there than that? He’s had a decent season so far with a win at the Open de Espana and top10’s at Wentworth and Portrush so he has the game to put in a solid performance. He also knows how to play the course as well, having narrowly lost out to Jiminez in a playoff in 2010.
Robert Rock (80/1 a win, 20/1 a place)
I tipped Robert Rock for the Irish Open but a 4 over par total saw him finish in 65th. This dismal performance hasn’t deterred me as I know he has an abundance of talent and it would be foolish to ignore him. All he needs is a confidence boost and I reckon he’ll get right back on track. The course isn’t very challenging so the way I see it is that the real battle will take place on the greens, and in spite of various flaws in the rest of his game, putting is where Rock excels. The 20/1 a win looks good.
TOP BET: Richard Green (70/1 a win, 17/1 a place)
Who is Richard Green? Well first off he’s one of the guys who missed the cut last week, but don’t let that deter you. When it comes to course specialists he is right up there at Le Golf National. He’s been in the top 7 here in 4 of the last 7 staging’s and ended last year in 11th. With stats like that he certainly cannot be ignored so take an each way bet here.
Written by @Matt_Cee for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!
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