Wednesday, 23 September 2020

Irish Open 2020 - Galgorm Castle GC, Ballymena, Northern Ireland & Corales Puntacana (PGA)

 Webb Simpson nearly produce place money last week in an enjoyable US Open at Winged Foot. Bryson de Chambeau played superb golf over the week but in particular the front-9 on Sunday to the dismay of many. His style is not my cup of tea, I don't think the power game that he has produced his sustainable for him but it'll be fascinating to see how he goes at Augusta in a few weeks time.

Onto the Irish Open this week which is now being played at Galgorm Castle Gold & Spa Resort in Ballymenna, Northern Ireland who have stepped in at last minute to host the event as Irish Republic restrictions are in place to tackle the spread of COVID-19, meaning Mt Juliet cannot fulfil their hosting duties. With Galgorm deputising, it's good to know an agreement has been reached for the Co. Kilkenny club to host next year, please God if all goes well in curtailing the disease that has impacted all our lives. Its probably good news for MT Juliet touring pro representative, Gavin Moynihan as he is woefully out of form and indeed so much so, that even a return to Irish soil this week probably won't be enough to re-ignite his poor season. Still, of the Irish contingent to tee it up this week, hope sides with the Open Champion, Shane Lowry who leads the market. Of the others, Cormac Sharvin and Jonathan Caldwell should arrive in confidence following recent good form and would be good TOP10/20 bets this week. As the majority of this field are made up of Challenge Tour players in essence, it could be a week that Padraig Harrington pulls a surprise....he's been chomping at the bit to get going again and with the Ryder Cup captain putting his plans on hold for another 12 months at least, we can be assured he's up for the challenge ahead this week. I think he's worth chancing here this week @ 80/1 with 8nplaces on offer. He's been out with the Irish lads playing the K Club of late and working to get ready - he needs no further build up other than he's motivated to win his "5th Major" ...again !

As per the last couple of months, I'm sticking with players that have made my staking plans and will go again with Wil Besseling, who finished 9th on this course at the Northern Ireland Open on the Challenge Tour in 2018. He's in form and if we are to see a birdie fest here this week, his long game will suit; just needs to bring a hot putter!. Calum Hill is a previous winner here (2018) and finished TOP-10 last year also....he has strong course form and recent form suggest this is a week to play him......His price is fair @ 40/1 - 8 places

Over on the PGA Tour, Chris Kirk I think is good value @ 60/1 8 places (Boylesports) or 66/1 7 places (general). A former OWGR TOP-20 ranked player, Kirk is making a comeback following some serious personal issues and he's already achieved a win this year seeing off this week's market leader, Will Zalatoris when winning on the Korn Ferry Tour in June. He finished 21st at the recent Rocket Mortgage Classic so form is holding. 

Charles Howell III, Mr Consistency, might go well at 28/1- 8 places so hes chanced also based on that consistency as shown when finishing 30th at Winged Foot last week after a 3rd place finish at the 3M Open back in July


0.75 pts e/w P. Harrington @ 80/1 - 8 places
1.50 pts e/w W. Besseling @ 35/1 - 8 places
1.00 pts e/w C. Hill @ 40/1 - 8 places
0.75 pts e/w C. Kirk @ 60/1 - 8 places
1.00 pts e/w C. Howell III @ 28/1 - 8 places

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