Andalucía Masters Betting Tips
Golf is in an interesting place at the moment with those involved in the professional game working hard on ways to grow its popularity.
While golf needs to embrace new players, styles and tournaments (the PGA Tour is hosting its first ever event in South Korea this week) it’s also important to recognise the traditions and history of the game.
That’s why it is so good to see the Andalucía Masters return to the European Tour schedule.
Hosted at one of the very best courses in Europe, Real Club Valderrama, the Andalucía Masters is back after a six year hiatus thanks in no small part to Sergio Garcia who is hosting the event for the benefit of his charitable foundation.
Valderrama to Show Its Teeth Once Again
On first viewing, Valderrama doesn’t look like a particularly challenging course. After all, very few host venues of professional tournaments measure under 7,000 yards, but anybody in the field who think they’re in for an easy time of it this week is in for a shock.
Valderrama is one of the most challenging tests of golf used on the European Tour this year.
It is incredibly tight with trees lining the fairways. That demands great accuracy off the tee while the small greens are only receptive to the best struck iron shots.
It’s no surprise that Andrew Johnston topped the driving accuracy and greens in regulation stats en route to winning the Open de España at Valderrama last year.
Something similar will be required this year even if Johnston is unlikely to repeat that success as he is making his return from injury in Spain.
Spanish Fans Could be Celebrating Come Sunday
It’s always special for golf fans to get top quality tournaments in their backyard but it’s even better for the galleries when they’ve got a home favourite or two to support.
That’s exactly what the Spanish fans have this week with both Jon Rahm and Sergio Garcia sitting right at the top of the betting.
Valderrama's scoring average of 75.6 was the highest on tour last season.— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) October 17, 2017
Hit. Those. Fairways. pic.twitter.com/IDn7rgoTvh
Rahm is one of the most exciting golfers on the planet right now and such is his skill that it would be no shock to see him content at Valderrama but you’ve got to think that Garcia’s chances of winning are much greater.
The style of golf demanded by Valderrama suits Garcia’s game perfectly and he has a record at the course that the rest of the field could only dream of.
At the best price of 11/2 with Sportingbet, Garcia is very much the man to beat but he’s not the only Spaniard with a genuine chance.
Alejandro Canizares has had something of a season to forget and he is need of a big performance to make the top 100 in the Race to Dubai rankings (this is the last tournament before the final series begins in Turkey). Thankfully for Canizares, he has a strong record at Valderrama and which makes him look good value at 50/1 with Ladbrokes.
Each-Way Value Lies with Ball Strikers and Experience
It’s been nine years since Padraig Harrington played at Valderrama but the experienced Irishman will have plenty of fond memories as he returns this week.
Harrington may not be at the peak of his powers as he was when regularly securing impressive finishes at Valderrama but he is still very competitive at this level. There is a lack of depth of quality in this field which should make Harrington’s course form a major plus so back him each-way at 70/1 with Bet365.
Richard Bland is another experienced pro who has the combination of quality ball striking and patient temperament to go well at Valderrama. He missed the cut on debut here in 2011 but bounced back to finish 11th last year and he could improve further at 100/1 with Boylesports.
Finally, Raphael Jacquelin is another who’s the previous form at Valderrama makes him look very good value. The Frenchman will need to improve significantly from a horrid season but he’s surely worth a small each-way play at 250/1 with Winner.