Selectabet: Barclays Singapore Open
November 8, 2011 Leave a comment
Date: 10th – 13th November 2011
Competition: Barclays Singapore Open
Well, it’s hot and it’s wet. Good if you are with a lady, but no good if you are trying to grip it and rip it down tight lush fairways! That aside, welcome to sticky Singapore and the third major Barclays sponsored tournament of 2011! The Asian swing continues after an exciting KAY-max last week in Shanghai and you find all of us here hoping for more “to the death” action over two of this Island Country’s finest golf courses for the richest purse in the East!
Venue: The Tanjong & the Serapong, Sentosa Golf Club, Singapore
Both courses at this unique tournament are played over the first two days, while the weekend brings consecutive rounds on the tougher course. While the Tanjong is the natural beauty – shorter with water, trees and is superbly well bunkered – the Serapong is significantly longer and has views over the vast Singapore harbor – the world’s busiest port (in terms of shipping tonnage). In terms of shots takenage though, it’s the Tanjong that should ignite some interesting low scores in preparation for the real business over the weekend.
Yards: 6,625 yards and 7,357 yards respectively
Par: Par 71
A bumper 204 strong field is taking to the lush Zoysia Matrella grass of these immaculate fairways including Major Champions Phil Mickelson (16/1), Yang Yong-eun (35/1), Graeme McDowell (18/1) and 3 time old timer Padraig Harrington (40/1). However, other talent is included in the form of Anthony Kim (18/1), Camillo Villegas (25/1) and several unheard-of unprenounceables beyond Melvin Chew Por Chen (2000/1), Madasaamy Murugiah (2000/1), Guido Van Der Walk (“No bets please we are Dutch”) and Quincy Quek (1,000/1 – all Bet365). Take your pick!
Rules. The Singapore authorities love rules and make ridiculous ones at that. Consider a jail term for the following simple actions: peeing in an elevator; walking around your own home in the nude; and oral sex (caveat: unless used as a form of foreplay). Consider also the rules on homosexuality being illegal and failure to flush a public lavatory will lead to hefty fines. No wonder then that John Daly never made the sponsors invite list.
Ones to watch:
Mardan Mamat (300/1 at SportingBet) created history as the first Singaporean to win on The European Tour for a one stroke victory in the 2006 Singapore Masters. The local hero believes he’s still got what it takes to keep alive his record at this Open and especially with a long putter in the bag for the first time. He has made the cut every year except 2007 (disqualified!) and has finished 16th in 2005, 12th in 2006, 41st in 2008, 31st in 2009 and 37th last year.
Grinding out a 7th place in Shanghai last week, Louis Oosthuisen (26/1 at BetFair & BetDaq) is clearly back to his very best and while he comes with no history at the Barclays, has no jet lag and is acclimatized to the surroundings that welcome him this week. A win in Africa in January and not much since, his last two events have earned top 10 places (the Alfred Dunhill Links Championships) – now that’s surely a way to put the spring back in the Springboks step.
Ones to win:
Former paratrooper Thongchai Jaidee (79/1 at BetDaq) has found a remarkable rich vein of form. Several weeks ago it was looking likely that despite having more air miles than any other professional, he may lose out on a European Tour card but now a top 100 place is all but secured! This return to form, coupled with recent success in Asia on the short Tour means that Jaidee could be the one singing the Thongs come Sunday evening.
Knocking back the Singapore slings (like Rioja?), smoking a fine Cuban this week and holding the winning Raffles ticket (get it?) I clearly see Miguel Angel Jimenez (50/1 at BetDaq) staring back at me atop the winners rostrum in my crystal ball. With a timely second place finish in Andalucia (courtesy of some brown sponsor’s envelopes perhaps?) and 333,000 gold sovereigns later – his season is back on track as he now fights for a stunning R2D top ten finish. All that eludes him from this year is a victory – and for someone of his caliber, despite the humidity, is no sweat.