Alstom Open De France 2015 Preview

Written by Matt Cee for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!

Alstom Open De France | Thursday 02 July - Sunday 05 July | Le Golf National

The European Tour got off to a bit of a shaky start this season with a few months of relatively dull tournaments which drew average fields. Things have really kicked off over the past month and a bit though and we can finally look forward to some quality golf in Europe. Last week’s tournament was a hotly contested affair and this week promises to offer much of the same as some of Europe’s best head to Le Golf National, which will be hosting the 2018 Ryder Cup.

This is a true test of one’s golfing ability as from the get-go, ball striking is key. The fairways are narrow and the rough is thick which means driving accuracy will be the statistic of the week. Miss a fairway and end up in the rough and you’ll be lucky to get away with a par. There’s also a fair amount of water waiting to punish those really wayward drives and when the wind gets up the chance of hitting it in those hazards increase exponentially. Clearly, the ability to control the ball when the wind is up will also be important. In order to win here consistency will be key and whoever comes out on top will require nerves of steel on a notoriously difficult course. So who has it in them to win in France? Let’s have a look.

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To Win Outright
Francesco Molinari  14/1   Lee Westwood  20/1
Graeme McDowell  22/1
Martin Kaymer  22/1
Jamie Donaldson  25/1

Gregory Bourdy (50/1 a win, 11/1 a place)
This week Gregory Bourdy will be looking forward to returning to his home country and to competing on a course that he knows well. Although the fact that he was born here is not enough to justify backing him, he is hitting the ball well at the moment and the only thing standing between him and victory is his inability to string four good rounds together. I’m hoping he manages to move past that this week and the home crowd support could give him the boost he needs. Last week Bourdy ranked first in driving accuracy, if he hits the ball off the tee like that this week he’ll give himself a real chance here.

David Howell (33/1 a win, 73/10 a place)
This promises to be a hotly contested affair and David Howell has proven time and time again this year that when things get competitive, he comes into his own. Although he hasn’t managed to find that elusive victory yet, it seems that it is only a matter of time before he goes one better than his two runner-up finishes this season. In the past he’s enjoyed playing here and this week will be no different. I’m backing Howell each way.

Alexander Levy (33/1 a win, 73/10 a place)
Alexander Levy is another French player who will be looking forward to returning home and he promises to be a firm favourite amongst the crowd this week. He got his season off to a bang and was in great form for the first few months of the year but he’s gone off the boil slightly over the past month or so and for that reason his price is bigger than I feel it should be. If he brings his A game this week he should be competitive here, let’s hope the support he’ll be getting from the French fans inspires him. I’m backing Levy each way.

Soren Kjeldsen (30/1 a win, 66/10 a place)

Soren Kjeldsen is having a stellar season and although he already has one victory to his name this year, having won the Irish Open a few weeks ago, I have a feeling that it won’t be his last of the season. Sure, he blows hot and cold but when he’s been on form it’s been exciting to watch and he deserves every bit of success he’s had thus far. With his GIR% at an all-time high he will be looking forward to returning to a course he’s fared well on in the past. At this price I have to back him each way.

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