EUROPEAN TOUR: 100th Open de France
The French Open returns to the excellent Paris National course this year. The course has generous fairways but requires accurate long iron approach shots to the small greens guarded generally by water hazards. A trend has emerged in that a number of outsiders have won in recent years.
OUTRIGHT: Francesco Molinari, 0.5 pts win and place 25/1 (1/4 odds 5 places)
Molinari’s game is well suited to the Paris National course as is borne out by his record here of 13T in 08, 2T in 10, 2nd in 12, 18T in 13 and 6T in 15. Having very narrowly missed out on Open qualification last week in The Quicken Loans event he may well be smarting and looking for a win to atone.
OUTRIGHT: Thorbjorn Olesen, 0.5 pts win and place 50/1 (1/4 odds 5 places)
Olesen is not the most consistent player on the planet but he was swinging really well last week in finishing tied second in Germany. Consequently these odds look good value, more so as he has already recorded a runner-up finish here in 2011.
OUTRIGHT: James Morrison, 0.5 pts win and place 70/1 (1/4 odds 6 places)
Last week’s Golfalot pick Morrison hardly set the heather on fire, withdrawing after round one of the BMW event. We have to hope he is not injured, but if not he looks good value at these odds as his recent form was good and he has recorded two top ten place finishes here already with a runner up finish last year preceded by a tied seventh place finish in 2011 which included a final round of 78!
PGA TOUR: WGC Bridgestone Invitational
Long and accurate hitters tend to be favoured at the tough, tree-lined Firestone course. Although many top European players area absent a strong field comprising mainly Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup players along with this year’s winners on the respective tours line up this week.
OUTRIGHT: Jason Dufner, 1 pt win and place 40/1 (1/4 odds 5 places)
Castro has already shown his liking for tight layouts with his hugely impressive runner-up finish at The Wells Fargo event on the tough Quail Hollow course in May, a result he has followed up with a tied eleventh place at The Memorial event three weeks ago. So he ought to be unfazed by the challenges presented by Congressional where he finished runner-up to Bill Haas in 2013.