Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Dubai Desert Classic 2011

The last event of the 2011 "Desert Swing" takes place at The Emirates GC in DUBAI this week with Tiger Woods re-appearing having won this event twice in the past. In fact, the Roll of Honour is quite impressive and Miguel Angel Jiminez will be keen to defend. Naturally, Kaymer will start off as favourite and this week's course will indeed be better suited to his game than last week's in Qatar, but at 11/2...thanks but no thanks. Its an exceptional field again and its very difficult to pick the likely winner but again the process to look at recent form and previous course form is the prime reasoning for my selections. Over the past few years the same contenders have been up there year after year and these players suggest they are likely to compete again this year. Henrik Stenson is one of those, a previous winner and multiple top 10 finishes indicate he has a liking for the course. But for the horror "9" he recorded on his 36th hole last week he could have challenged in Qatar so his form is good (as long he doesn't "throw" in another bad score somewhere). Ross Fisher hasn't had a great start to 2011 but he is the type to shrug off these minor worries and perform well in Dubai. The course will suit him greatly and he can win here. My third selection this week is Alexander Noren who has, bar Qatar, been in excellent form this season and he too has excellent form in Dubai. 2010 was plagued with injury but since his return he has gradually been improving and the year could be a successful one for the Swede, this is the type of tournament that will instill his confidence for the remainder of the season and he could very well sneak under the radar here. Tiger will be an interesting competitor, perhaps a trip to Europe could ignite his comeback away from the glaring eye of the American media but recent form suggests he has more work to do to eliminate the mistakes and his frustration needs to be controlled before he explodes altogether! I have to mention Michael Campbell again, 35/1 for a top 10 finish with Betpack could be worth a flutter but perhaps a watchful eye this week before his next event would be the recommendation.

TIP 1: 1 pt e/w H.Stenson @ 40/1 (Paddypower); Fantastic efforts over this course in the past, showed signs of form the past couple of tournaments.

TIP 2: 1 pt e/w R.Fisher @ 40/1 (Paddypower); The Englishman when on song is capable of beating the best and this could be the week!

TIP 3: 1 pt e/w A.Noren @ 66/1 (Paddypower); Another with excellent course form and playing well each week. 2nd European Tour win is not far away.