European Tour Betting Preview: KLM Open
This week, the European Tour heads west to the Netherlands and a new course just outside of Amsterdam for the KLM Open.
This is the first year this event will be played at The International, and due to that, there will not be a full course breakdown this week with no data to look at.
I’ll give a brief course preview of what we know and some initial thoughts and then a few of the best picks for the week.
This course is fairly short for a par 73, and being a par 73, it has par 5s, so we’re again going to be looking at players that play par 5s well. Unlike last week’s course, however, I don’t see length mattering as much; in fact I could imagine short game being very important as many players will be up near the green on the par 5s in two and will need to get up-and-down for birdie not to feel like they’re giving up strokes on the field.
The par 4s are on the shorter side as well with five of the nine par 4s playing under 400 yards. Similar to last week, there is water on many holes, and that leads me to want to play more accurate players this week. So while there isn’t any data to back this up because of the lack of course history, I will be looking for players who hit fairways, have solid short game, and can score on par 5s.
The field is headlined by Patrick Reed, Sergio Garcia, Matt Wallace, and Thomas Pieters. The top Dutch Player this week will be Joost Luiten, two-time winner of this event, and for fans of patterns, he won this in 2013 and 2016 when the event’s location had switched over from the prior year as well. So, if the pattern continues, we all know who to pick for 2022 as well.
This is a weaker field with some strong events on the horizon, so there will be value in some of the longer odds players this week.
Mike Lorenzo-Vera: MLV has been knocking on the door lots this year. He has five top-10 finishes, including two runner-ups without a win so far. While not profiling as a bomber, he ranks 25th in par 5 scoring on the European Tour this year. He ranks 16th in strokes gained: around the green, so if he can put himself in the right spots near these par 5 greens, he can get up-and-down for the birdies. One other thing MLV has going for him is that he is coming in rested. Lots of the guys here this week have played three-plus events in a row, but Lorenzo-Vera only has one start worldwide in the last month.
Bet: To Win (+1600) on FanDuel Sportsbook
Hugo Leon: Hugo has had a really solid stretch the last few weeks here. He has a couple missed cuts, but three top-20s otherwise. Last week he ranked sixth in strokes gained: tee to green which is great to see. He just needs to have a better week with the putter, and he’s ready for a win. For the season, he ranks 13th in strokes gained: around the green, top-30 in strokes gained: off the tee, and 34th in par 5 scoring.
Bet: To Win (+15000), Top-20 (+700)
Jamie Donaldson: Donaldson seems to be rounding into some sort of form at the moment. He has made three of his last four cuts, including two top-10s. This stretch was preceded by a stretch of four straight missed cuts and six straight finishes outside the top-60. Point being that Donaldson is not as bad as he was showing earlier this year, and this might be a good chance to get on him before his odds get chopped in half. He ranks 16th in par 5 scoring, and 2nd in strokes gained: around the green for the season.
Bet: Top-10 (+650)
Zander Lombard: I’m becoming a broken record with Lombard I feel like, but what can I say? He’s one of my guys. If we’re going to keep seeing these courses with a bunch of par 5s, I’m going to keep putting my money on the long-hitting South African. He is coming in with solid form having made four straight cuts, and given the weaker field if he brings his A-game, there is a good chance he’ll be right there on Sunday. Lombard has 8 eagles in 61 rounds this year, giving him the 30th-best rate on the European Tour this season. There will be eagles available to the bigger hitters on these short par 5s. He also ranks top-20 in strokes gained: around the green on the season, so even if he’s not hitting the par 5s in two, expect him to have plenty of chances to get up-and-down for birdies.
Bet: Top-20 (+600)
Robert Karlsson: Karlsson is tied for the most eagles on the European Tour this season with 11. He ranks out decent in par 5 scoring overall as well at 61st on the season. We shouldn't expect Karlsson to contend to win, but he certainly has the upside to make an eagle or two this week which could vault him into the top-10 or 20.
Bet: Top-20 (+750)