European Golf: Windy winner

As September turns into October and the weather in the UK becomes more chilly, where better to play golf than on the Scottish links!

The Alfred Dunhill Links Championship is a pro-am tournament set among three Scottish links courses, where woolly hats are usually at least as valuable as putters.

The event tends to attract an impressive  field and does have a large purse, but it’s a special type of player who can maintain his form in a howling gale while his amateur partner takes 12 out of the fairway bunker on the second, having five putted the first.

The previous winners read like a who’s who of golfers, as in most of the public would simply ask: who? Four of the last six winners have had starting odds of 100/1 or longer, with the most favoured winner over this period being Branden Grace at 28/1 in 2012.

With all this in mind we’re going to side with genial characters who are used to windy conditions.

We’ve been keen on Matthew Fitzpatrick for a while, and although he played well at Close House last weekend he wasn’t close enough. We’ll try again.

Chris Wood has a reputation of a good wind player, started when he finished fifth at the Open in 2008 as an amateur. We’ll side with this Ryder Cup player.

All of Matthew Southgate‘s best form is in windy conditions, including winning the 2010 St. Andrews Links Trophy as an amateur. He also came sixth at the Open in July, and we’ll take a punt at long odds.

Finally, playing with a breeze seems something Scandinavian players are very used to. Swede Joakim Lagergren finished fourth here last year, and we’ll take a chance on a horses for courses basis.

Recommendations:

Fitzpatrick to win at 25/1, 1 pt, widely available

Wood to win at 33/1, 1 pt, widely available

Southgate 0.5 pts each way at 100/1, 1/5 the odds first 7, Coral

Lagergren 0.5 pts each way at 90/1, 1/4 the odds first 6, Stan James 

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