Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: European Tour: AfrAsia Mauritius Open Preview

European Tour: AfrAsia Mauritius Open Preview

Golfer admires shot

This week the European Tour moves to the even more picturesque paradise that is Mauritius. This will be a tri-sanctioned event between the European, Asian and Sunshine Tours. It will be the 5th renewal of the Mauritius Open and 3rd consecutive season as the 2nd event in the new European Tour schedule.

The European Tour | Asian Tour | Sunshine Tour
AfrAsia Mauritius Open
The Heritage Course, Domaine de Bel Ombre, Mauritius 
Thursday 5 December - Sunday 8 December

You had to admire the guts of Pablo Zarrazabal in capturing the title at Leopard Creek last week. The charismatic Spaniard overcame nearly debilitating blisters to triumph at a course he so loves. This week the European Tour moves to the even more picturesque paradise that is Mauritius. This will be a tri-sanctioned event between the European, Asian and Sunshine Tours. It will be the 5th renewal of the Mauritius Open and 3rd consecutive season as the 2nd event in the new European Tour schedule. This event has alternated between two host courses, with Kurt Kitayama tasting success at the Four Seasons Golf Club in Anahita last year. The event now returns to The Heritage Course for the 3rd time. 

The Heritage Course at Domaine de Bel Ombre is a short, wind-affected coastal affair that measures under 7000 yards. It was designed by failed golf professional Peter Matkovich and really depends on wind for protection. The generous fairways give way to some tricky greens. The course is gorgeous, with a lagoon on one side of the course and mountains on the other. The Indian Ocean will be visible on 10 of the 18 holes. There is little course analysis to go off, but what can be gleaned from the two events thus far seems to favour accuracy over distance. 

The markets are headed by the Belgian duo of Thomas Pieters and Thomas Detry. I would probably be tempted to avoid both of these extreme talents, due to their often-mercurial natures. George Coetzee has been improving steadily of late while Zander Lombard flirts consistently with a major breakthrough. Christiaan Bezuidenhout had a disastrous 2nd round at Leopard Creek while Brandon Stone also battles with finding any semblance of consistency in his game. 

Past Winners
2018: Kurt Kitayama (-20) Four Seasons
2017: Dylan Frittelli (-16)
2016: Jeunghan Wan (-6) Four Seasons
2015: George Coetzee (-13) *playoff

Outright Betting (To Win)
Thomas Pieters (10/1)
Thomas Detry (12/1)
George Coetzee (16/1)
Zander Lombard (20/1)
Christiaan Bezuidenhout (20/1)


Value Bets

Zander Lombard
To Win (20/1), To Place (44/10)

You just have to feel that the plucky South African will win soon enough. He is coming to an event that has proved extremely fruitful to South African golfers. Lombard completely capitulated with a triple bogey on the final hole of a treacherous Leopard Creek layout. He was in contention throughout the week. He finished the last season in fine form, with that brilliant top 10 at the Nedbank Golf Challenge. He also finished on the cusp of a top 20 in Turkey. Lombard has shown coastal credentials before, losing in a playoff in Sicily a few years back. He also has a couple of top 10’s in the Irish Open. 

Shubhankar Sharma
To Win (25/1), To Place (11/2)

The mini resurgence of Shubhankar Sharma this year has actually been down to footwear, would you believe it. Sharma won the Joburg Open in 2017 and captured the Maybank Championship just two months later. That got him a lucrative Nike sponsorship. But a subsequent dip in form had everybody flummoxed. Long-time coach Jesse Grewal finally figured out that his flat-soled Nikes had resulted in subtle changes to his golf swing. Nike provided him with new insoles and the results were almost immediate. He finished in a tie for 17th in the European Tour flagship event: the BMW PGA Championship. He followed that up with back-to-back top 10 finishes at Rolex Series events: the Italian Open and Turkish Airlines Open. He finished 27th here on his only ever visit, though he was only ranked 454th in the world at that stage. 

The Man to Beat

Romain Langasque
To Win (20/1), To Place (44/10)

Frenchman Romain Langasque certainly fits the stereotype of inconsistent French golfing talent. But he will be entering this event with some gradually improving form and some solid course history. He qualified for the DP World Tour Championship by securing a solo 9th at the Turkey Airlines Open and a top 30 at the Gary Player Country Club. Langasque finished in the top 3 last time this event was played at the Heritage and should once again be a factor this week.  

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