I missed the events last week due to a lack of time. There’s no point in rushing things just for the sake of it. I did catch Adam Long holding his own on Sunday night and Shane Lowry likewise the previous day, two very impressive wins.
On to this week, and the European Tour makes its annual stop at its very first desert event in the Gulf, first staged way back in 1989. Ten major winners have lifted the Dubai Desert Classic title over the years, in what is generally a very strong field.
Download Excel Odds Sheet: GolfOdds.Info – Omega Dubai Desert Classic 2019
Bryson DeChambeau heads the betting but is too short for me. Indeed, there’s little value to be had amongst most of the market leaders. I suppose when you can make a case for all of the top-20 or so in the field, as you can expect 2 or 3 of them to be challenging come Sunday. This in turn means prices on these players are prohibitively low as the bookmakers expect most of the action on this elite group. This happens from time to time, so I’ll be looking further down the field for some small bets on big priced but value selections.
Lee Westwood is still playing well after his victory in Spain at the end of last season. He’s performed well on the odd occasion here over the years without actually winning. He offers some value at the prices this week.
Jason Scriverner is an easy pick. He’s continued his fine form at the end of 2018 into the new year with 16th last week in Abu Dhabi. Throw in a 6th place finish here last year and you can see why he’ll be a popular choice for many.
We last backed Frenchman Victor Perez at the Hong Kong Open where he came up just short. He followed that up by leading after one round in Mauritius before finishing 14th. It’s been an impressive start to his first full season on the European Tour, and he’s shown his liking for desert style courses very recently when he was runner-up in Ras Al Khaimah at the Challenge Tour Grand Final. That finish was just enough to get a ranking to scrape into the field this week. He won in China back in October with an 18-under total, so he ticks the box with regard to going low.
David Horsey is another player who has years of experience at this venue, including 22nd last year. An encouraging 11th last week to start of his year makes him a very good value outsider.
Another Challenge Tour graduate I’m taking this week is American Sean Crocker. It’s either feast of famine with him, with missed cuts one week followed by a top-10 or 20 in his next event. Like Perez he’s shown some form on desert courses with 5th place at the Challenge Tour Grand Final.
Lee Westwood 1pt ew @ 41 (PaddyPower, Boyles 1/5 1st 7)
Jason Scriverner 1pt ew @ 81 (SkyBet 1/5 1st 6)
Victor Perez 1pt ew @ 151 (Unibet, 888Sport, SkyBet 1/5 1st 6)
Sean Crocker 0.5pt ew @ 151 (various 1/5 1st 6)
David Horsey 0.5pt ew @ 201 (various 1/5 1st 6)