Turkish Airlines Open Betting Tips
Robert Cobley is a maths graduate with years of experience in the sports betting industry. He has now teamed up with Bet UK to bring his golf betting tips to our readers.
The Montgomerie Maxx Royal - Belek, Turkey - Par 72, 7,133 Yards
The European Tour enters its penultimate week in Turkey this week as the players head 30 miles east of Antalya for the Turkish Airlines Open. The Colin Montgomerie designed estate is home to two courses that have rotated this event between them over the past six years. The Carya course hosted the event for the past three years, having taken over from the Maxx Royal back in 2016. Prior to that Maxx Royal had hosted the first three stagings of what has become an increasingly prestigious event, and a strong field assembles once again; chasing the coveted riches on offer for the winner of the Race to Dubai.
The course itself was a co-design between Colin Montgomerie and European Golf Design back in 2008. It is a medium length par 72 with three par 3s and three par 5s set on the Turkish coast. Though a seaside venue, Maxx Royal is forested and there are trees lining almost all of the fairways. On the front nine holes the fairways are generous and it is the easier scoring half of the course. On the back side, the fairways narrow and the finishing holes are amongst the toughest. Water, largely in the shape of small lakes is in play on 8 of the holes; usually on the approaches to the greens. The greens are large, slopey, fast, and pristine. Greens in regulation stats should be high across the field this week, and this is very much a hit it close, make the putts type of venue where, if the wind is low, the winning score is likely to go lower than 20 under par. That should be the case this week given the generous forecast.
The profile of player likely to succeed at Maxx Royal is a bomber that gets hot in the greens. Two of the three par 5s are reachable, and there are also two drivable par 4s to make for even more drama, and even lower scores. The players will need to be aggressive. Making pars around here will drop you back into the field. It should be an exciting week's golf.
Last Five Winners:
The Market Leaders
Fresh from last week's trip to Asia for the WGC HSBC Champions event where he posted a credible top 30 following five weeks off, Englishman Justin Rose (15/2) arrives in Turkey as the market favourite this week. The support for Rose is understandable, and on the back of a similarly priced winner last week in Rory McIlroy, Justin won't go without his backers. Rose has pedigree in Turkey having won this event for the past two years, although on the alternate Carya course. Whilst that doesn't necessarily give him the course form at Maxx Royal, the two venues are incredibly similar, and I'm happy enough that form in Turkey should reflect in this week's performance. Rose will be full of confidence here. He finished the season strongly in the US playoffs, and will be looking to make a similar charge in Europe. Rose has a good all round game, and is very capable of attacking these greens and shooting the low numbers required to win. Last time the event was here, Rose finished strongly for a 3rd placed finish behind Dubuisson. For me the price accurately reflects his chances.
American Patrick Reed (10/1) is a strong supporter of the European Tour, and continues his end of season travels with his first career event in Turkey. Reed is in good form and should find this venue very much to his liking. He is consistent from the tee, and a very aggressive iron player. He enjoys wind, and although the breeze is forecast to be low this week, it always has an effect around these coastal venues. If Reed has a good putting week he could very well contend on the back of top 20s in his last four events, but his win propensity for me remains too low in this quality of field, and he's not a player I would be supporting at the price.
Shane Lowry (16/1), Tyrrel Hatton (16/1) and Matt Wallace (18/1) make up the remainder of the sub 20/1 shots as they support Rose in a British assault on this title. Lowry has no top 10 finishes since his Open Championship win, and a 43rd in a limited field event last week doesn't inspire confidence that he can challenge for the title this week. In his three visits to Maxx Royal he has one top 10 and two mid field finishes and he's not one for me this week. Hatton is showing slightly better form with a 14th last week to back up his 6th place in Korea. He has two top 30 finishes here without really contending and is on the periphery for me this week. He won't be a tip. Finally, Wallace showed some progress with an 8th in Japan two weeks ago but was very disappointing in finishing 60th last week. This is his first visit to Maxx Royal, and he also would present too much of a leap of faith at this price. I will be looking at value further down the field in an event where historically 4 of the 6 winners have had an SP in excess of 40/1.
Rob’s Golf Betting Tips
Headline Betting Tip
England's Danny Willett had a terrible time at the HSBC Champions last week in Shanghai; finishing tied last on 11 over par, so it might seem strange that he makes his debut as this week's headline pick. That performance for me was an anomaly for Willett, who has been playing some really good golf lately. Sometimes an event just gets the better of you, and Willet's record in the far east is generally quite miserable so i'm prepared to overlook that in search of the value here. Aside from that finish Danny has been playing solid golf; none more so than with his win at the BMW PGA at Wentworth in September. His long game there looked fantastic, and he had followed that up with more respectable finishes including a top 20 at the Italian Open.
Willett is an aggressive player, and sometimes that is going to see him have bad weeks. It's not unique to him. Dustin Johnson and Rory Mcilroy, even Brooks Koepka can often have blow outs and miss cuts, but, as with Danny, on their day they're some of the best players around. Willett has won The Masters at Augusta, and that recent success at Wentworth is a shining beacon that his game is back where it needs to be. In his last two visits to Maxx Royal, Danny has posted finishes of 4th and 11th so the course certainly suits his attacking style of golf. Mentally he should be prepared having switched off somewhat last week, and I expect a very strong challenge here. I will be having 3 points e/w at 28/1.
Other Betting Tips
South African Goerge Coetzee let us down two weeks ago when tipped up in Portugal. Despite being 3rd going into the final round, he started poorly and a level par 72 dropped him back to 14th. That was a shame as his golf over the first three days had been very good. Last week Coetzee showed that form once again back in his native South Africa; claiming his 10th Sunshine Tour title in Simola, Including a bogey-free opening round of 61 as he blew the field away.
Those low numbers are what I really like about Coetzee this week. He is as good as nearly anyone in the field at attacking the pins when he is on form, and I think he has some really low numbers in him here. On his first visit to Maxx Royal in 2012, Coetzee finished 12th, and the setup really should suit his game. I would make him a borderline bet at half this price so I’m very happy to go in on Coetzee with 2 points e/w at 40/1.
Matthew Southgate is another player that we have looked at recently as he attempts to gain his maiden European Tour title. We tipped Southgate up along with Coetzee in Portugal where he largely struggled to get into contention. One significant plus was his closing 65 that saw him move into the top 30, and that was Southgate's last competitive round before this week as he missed the Asian swing to get some rest ready to contend for the big prizes on offer in the closing stages of the Tour's Race to Dubai. Matt is another player that can be aggressive and go low. His 2nd placed finish at the Dunhill Links saw him post a score of 21 under par; similar to the mark we would expect needed to contend this week.
On the face of it, there do not seem too many similarities between links golf and this week's venue in Turkey, but the profile of players that have won at this course is strikingly similar to those that have contended at the Dunhill. 2016 winner Thorbjorn Olesen and Justin Rose have both won at the Dunhill Links, Dubuisson has contended, and even the likes of Lee Westwood that has back to back top 10s here has won at The Dunhill. I expect a strong end of season from Southgate, starting here in Turkey, and there is no way that he should be these prices. I will be backing him with 1 point e/w at 80/1.
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*All odds from Bet UK’s online betting markets correct at the time of writing.
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