Luke Donald hasn’t won a tournament in four years, but it is a brave man that takes on the former world number one in his own backyard.
The 38-year-old grew up near Wentworth and has a tremendous record around his local track at the European Tour’s flagship tournament.
Two victories and three top 10 finishes make the Ryder Cup veteran a man to be on the right side of at 28/1.
Donald’s bid to add more length ruined his game but, having returned to his old technique, he has shown sparks of life on the PGA Tour this season.
Donald back in form?
He could have won the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head, another course he really likes, had he holed a few more putts and he followed up with a decent top 20 showing in the Texas Open.
It’s a stretch to suggest Donald is coming back to his prime but, given that even in the dark days of his golfing recession he still finished 3rd and 38th at the BMW in the last two years, a place showing could be very much on the cards if things go his way.
Rafa Cabrera-Bello looks primed to win a big tournament sooner rather than later and the Spaniard could prove a big price at 28/1 on the West course.
Third in the Match Play, he has also posted top 20s in the Spanish Open and the WGC-Cadillac Championship before reinforcing his good form with a tied-8th finish in the Irish Open last weekend.
He can’t be left out of calculations.
I’m determined to snap up any of the 20/1 out there on Francesco Molinari. The Italian led throughout last year before cracking in the final round and ending up in fifth.
That merely continued his good form at Wentworth, following finishes of 7th, 9th and 7th in the previous three years.
Tied 9th at the Arnold Palmer Invitational this season and in a share of 7th at the Players Championship a couple of weeks ago, he is in strong form and.
In a tournament shorn of many of Europe’s top stars, this could be his year to strike.
Master champion Danny Willett rightly heads the market but, after two fine days in Ireland last week, he looked to me to have run out of steam and may yet require more time to adjust to the demands of being a new dad and a Major winner.