Scottish Open – Gullane Golf Club at 10:00 live on Sky Sports 4
The Scottish Open always precedes the Open Championship, and this year is no different as some of the world’s best players tee it up in Gullane, East Lothian. A stellar field has assembled itself ahead of the third major championship of the year, as many look to work on their games and adapt to conditions near the Scottish coast. The world number one, Rory McIlroy is ruled out with an ankle injury, therefore last year’s winner, Justin Rose is the bookies favourite and is closely followed in the betting by Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler. It is worth noting that the top three players this week, who have not already qualified for the Open Championship, will earn a spot in next week’s field.
For the first time, Gullane Golf Club hosts the Scottish Open and the course will provide those players playing in next week’s Open Championship, with invaluable links experience. Links golf provides a different test compared with most venues, therefore expect players with good form on links courses to perform well this week. The course is a par 70 that will play 7,133 yards, and the fairways are relatively wide, however wayward drives will be punished by the thick rough. The winning score will ultimately depend on the weather, and rain is forecast throughout the week, we could also see some strong winds across the weekend.
Peter Hanson – Six time European Tour winner, Peter Hanson is returning to form and I’m surprised he can be backed at 66/1. He’s finished inside the top 30 in four of his last five starts and that includes a 7th place finish in the BMW International Open a couple of weeks ago. Hanson has a very good record on links golf courses, he won the KLM Open in 2012, tied for 10th in this event in 2011 and finished 23rd in the Open Championship in 2012. The Swede is yet to qualify for this year’s Open Championship, therefore he has the motivation of claiming one of the three spots available this week.
1pt each way @ 66/1
Marc Warren – Marc Warren may have missed the cut in France last week, but I couldn’t ignore the Scotsman at 80/1. He’s a three time winner on the European Tour, he’s recorded a couple of top tens this season and recently finished 27th in the US Open. Warren is a very good links golfer, and he’s performed very well in his home Open in recent years. In 2012, Marc tied for third in this event and he did the same in last year’s Scottish Open.
1pt each way @ 66/1
Tyrrell Hatton – Englishman, Tyrrell Hatton comes into this week in very good form, he finished 12th in last week’s Open de France and it won’t be long before he records his first victory. Hatton finished inside the top ten on four occasions last season and he’s already recorded three top tens this year. One of those came recently in the Irish Open, which is played at Royal County Down, a links golf course. In last year’s Scottish Open, Hatton tied for 4th position, this again indicating that he likes links golf.
1pt each way @ 80/1
Prices correct at the time of writing.
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