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KLM Open betting preview
By Ben Coley Last updated: 8th September 2010
Ben Coley previews this week's KLM Open in the Netherlands with Simon Dyson heading his staking plan.
First things first, this week's KLM Open has the makings of a trappy event.
Well, primarily because this is the first time the event has been held at Hilversumsche since 2005,
Then you've got the fact that widespread and worthy favourite Martin Kaymer hasn't been seen since winning the USPGA Championship and finally a look through the winners of this event in the early part of the last decade only helps to cloud the issue; Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano won the '05 renewal by bombing the ball and holing putts (honest), a year before David Lynn found fairways and greens, while back in 2002 little-known Tobias Dier caused a massive upset and did so by hitting it a mile and getting up and down when he had to.
Still, let's not lose hope and indeed rely on a past champion, local favourite Maarten Lafeber, to point us in the right directon:
"Hilversumsche is a tree-lined parkland course...the key is to drive the ball in play - that is the number one priority if you wish to contend."
I'm glad he said that because while the stats don't necessarily highlight a specific type of golfer there is a slight tendency towards hitting the ball well off the tee and that's in keeping with a lot of Kyle Phillips-designed courses - he was part of the team that created Celtic Manor and is also responsible for Kingsbarns, one of the three courses used as part of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
That brings us nicely to the headline selection, the man who is current holder of not only the Alfred Dunhill, where he shot a tidy 68 at Kingsbarns, but also this very event. That man is Simon Dyson.
The Yorkshireman closed with a superb 63 last year to get into a play-off with Peters Lawrie and Hedblom and won that with a birdie to land the title for the second time, having also won it in a similar fashion back in 2006. Yes, both successes came at Kennemeer GC, but he did finish inside the top 20 at this course in 2003 when half the player he is now.
That's backed up in the stats.
Dyson ranked 12th in driving accuracy on his way to an admittedly rather laboured share of 60th in Switzerland last week and was 16th in the same category when sixth at Gleneagles, while in winning this last year he was seventh in accuracy off the tee.
There's no denying that last weekend's 74-75 tempers enthusiasm but this really is Dyson's time of year and it makes sense to side with him in this event, remembering that his two starts prior to last week were a fifth and sixth.
Sticking with last year's form in this event, Peter Lawrie is taken to once more make a run at the title.
Lawrie isn't necessarily the best driver but he is sensible enough to take a three-wood where possible and that's enabled him to find plenty of greens in regulation, as he did before finding Dyson too strong late on a year ago.
Having also taken sixth in this back in 2006, it's clear Lawrie does well when coming to the Netherlands. Like Dyson, both those performances were at a different course but again like our main pick, Peter Lawrie has a fair T28 at this track to call upon.
That's not all, of course, for the main case for supporting the Irishman comes courtesy of his current form.
Ninth last week at Crans-sur-Sierre despite a poor opening 72 and a play-off defeat two weeks earlier having closed with a superb 66 shows that his game is in fine shape and the fact he took 20th at Celtic Manor earlier this year helps strengthen the belief he'll like this Kyle Phillips-design.
Last of the ticks next to his name comes something of a fillip for trends followers: Peter Lawrie has one win on the European Tour and it came a week after he finished ninth.
Last week he finished ninth - let's take the 50/1.
Next, I'm staying in Ireland with Damien McGrane.
The thing I like most about Meath-born McGrane is his tie for ninth when the Tour last came to Hilversumsche but when you delve deeper his form in this tournament in general is strong; he took third in 2006, tied for 20th in '08 and closed with 64 to take fourth last year.
Three top-10s in four starts is fantastic no matter what the event and McGrane may be about to add to his sole Tour success judging by a vast improvement in his putting this year, where he ranks 21st in overall putting and 20th in putts per greens hit.
This improvement is being reflected in his results which go as follows, from the Portuguese Open onwards: 5 - MC - 11 - 16 - 8 - 35 - 25 - 7.Steady stuff and I expect more of it this week.
Now it's a well-documented fact that the last five winners on the Tour are all members of Monty's Ryder Cup team, but how about one of the management stealing the spotlight this week?
No, I've not gone nuts and I'm not tipping Colin himself, but one of his vice-captains in Darren Clarke.
The Dazzler won this back in 2008 and shared fifth last year, so golf in Holland clearly suits. Indeed, that fifth is even more meritorious given he drove the ball like a mad man and who's to say he wouldn't have been involved in the play-off had he found some fairways?
Not only that, Clarke finished in a share of fifth at this very course back in 1998 so, while some 12 years ago, there's evidence that he can bring his A-game here too.
This year has been a decent one for him with top-15 finishes in his last three non-majors, including a fine second to Edoardo Molinari in Scotland, added to three other top-10s.
Furthermore for the first time in almost five years he's threatening to dip below 29 in the putts-per-round stats and that could well see him feature this week at a rewarding each-way price.
Next on the list is a man who appeals as a player who fits the basic bill and, while recent form figures don't scream winner, looks a shade overpriced. The man in question is reigning BMW International Open champion David Horsey at quotes of around 100/1.
The 25-year-old perhaps hasn't captured the imagination of all that many fans with a very steady game but any man who makes 20 out of 26 cuts on his debut season, as Horsey did last year, deserves respect.
It didn't take him long to get off the mark with a win either and that success came in an elite field including the likes of Kaymer so we shouldn't be worried about his resolution and he looks to fit the mould, clocking in at fourth on the season-long driving accuracy rankings which when combined with a 20th in putting makes for a dangerous player.
Add that to a solid T35 in this event last year with three rounds in the 60s, not to mention five other top-25s this year in addition to the victory in Germany, and he makes each-way appeal, enough to forgive an average effort in Switzerland on a course that players either take to or they don't.
Finally in an event where it may pay to take on the class acts on value grounds, we'll take a chance on Nicolas Colsaerts relishing a return to Holland for the first time since winning on the Challenge Tour there last year.
It's well known that he went off the boil having looked special as a teenager but that win along with several fine efforts on the Challenge Tour have provided the platform for a sterling season and recent form suggests he may rise to the occasion here as he's managed four T25 finishes in five starts, making quotes of 66/1 appealing.
1.5pts e.w. Simon Dyson at 33/1 (general 1/4 1,2,3,4,5). Dual KLM winner with form at this course too.
1pt e.w. Peter Lawrie at 50/1 (general 1/4 1,2,3,4,5). Lost in a play-off to Dyson last year and on a fine run.
0.75pts e.w. Damien McGrane at 50/1 (general 1/4 1,2,3,4,5). Three T10 finishes in last four KLM starts and also hot at present.
0.75pts e.w. Darren Clarke at 40/1 (Ladbrokes 1/4 1,2,3,4,5). Last European Tour win came in this event and he's got form at this course too.
0.5pts e.w. David Horsey at 100/1 (general 1/4 1,2,3,4,5). 2010 winner who fits the bill in terms of stats and value.
0.5pts e.w. Nicolas Colsaerts at 66/1 (general 1/4 1,2,3,4,5). Keeps contending and won in Holland on the Challenge Tour last year.
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