The European Tour remains at Celtic Manor for the return of the Wales Open. Here’s where you can catch the action and five players we think will challenge
The European Tour’s UK Swing stays at the Celtic Manor in South Wales for a second straight week. Sam Horsfield was triumphant over the resort’s Twenty Ten course last week, but who are we backing as the Wales Open returns to the calendar for the first time in six years? Read on…
Venue: Celtic Manor, Newport, Wales
Date: August 20-23, 2020
Course stats: Par 71; 7,354 yards
Course summary: A long and challenging test for players, there are plenty of areas to avoid, with water coming into play on half of the holes and long rough awaiting wayward shots.
Purse: £1 million
Defending champion: Joost Luiten (-14) from 2014
ISPS Handa Wales Open TV coverage
Thursday: Sky Sport Golf and Mix from 1.30pm and again from 6pm
Friday: Sky Sport Golf and Mix from 1.30pm and again from 6pm
Saturday: Sky Sports Golf from 11.30am and Sky Sports Red Button from 2pm
Sunday: Sky Sports Golf from 11.30am and Sky Sports Red Button from 1pm
ISPS Handa Wales Open: Each-way tips
Adrian Otaegui (45/1 with bet365) followed up an impressive 2nd place at the English Championship with a T14 finish last week. One particularly encouraging aspect of Otaegui’s performance was his run of five birdies in eight holes on the back nine on Sunday. This hot streak with the putter, and his run of eight consecutive under-par rounds, is no fluke for a player who ranks 30th in Putts-per-Round.
Jason Scrivener (45/1) has back-to-back T14 finishes in the UK Swing events so there is no reason to not be confident in him turning that into a top-five finish. The Australian certainly looked comfortable negotiating the tricky Twenty Ten course last week. In fact, since the European Tour’s restart, Scrivener has played 13 of 16 rounds under par and looks to be playing close to his best golf. At this price, I will be looking to take advantage of his consistency and hoping he can kick on slightly to push for the title on Sunday.
Connor Syme (50/1) held the 54-hole lead at the Celtic Classic thanks to a scintillating blemish-free round of 63. He may be disappointed to eventually finish T3, but I’m encouraged by three top-20 finishes in five events. Looking at his statistics it is clear why the 25-year old Scot is playing so well. He ranks in the top 10 on tour for Stroke Average, GIR, and Driving Accuracy. At this price he is worth siding with here.
ISPS Handa Wales Open betting: The long shot
Will Besseling (110/1) is a huge price for a player who ranks 1st for GIR on tour, and also ranked 1st for GIR here on Sunday. Besseling is transferring his best golf to this challenging layout, further demonstrating why he is excellent value this week. The Dutchman only made three bogeys in four rounds last time, before closing with a bogey-free 69, so he could be reaching his peak ready for this event. As each-way bets go, I can’t find many in this price bracket that represent better value.
ISPS Handa Wales Open: Top tip
After going close in his return to competitive golf last week, I am sticking with Thomas Pieters (11/1). The four-time European Tour winner played some excellent golf in the Celtic Classic, and just came unstuck with a third-round triple-bogey when leading comfortably. An opening 64 offers hope of another fast start, on a familiar course, which could set him up nicely to control this event from the front. Had compatriot Thomas Detry been playing this week, this might have been a tight call for the selection, but I am confident that Pieters can build on a solid performance last week and justify favouritism.
For more prices, visit bet365.