THIS week’s KLM Open takes place for the first time at the Dutch Golf Course in Spijk and was designed by Colin Montgomerie and Ross McMurray of European Golf Design.
The course opened in 2011 and is described as an inland links course and Montgomerie reckons the greens are the best on the European Tour this year.
Players are going to have to be straight off the tee though as the rough looks like the ball can easily disappear. It is an undulating landscape with positioning and putting going to be important.
My tip last week Scott Hend (125-1) didn’t do much wrong but he’ll hope he never sees the 18th tee again. All square with Alex Noren on the last he took an iron for safety and promptly hit into the trees then after managing to halve the hole he did the same thing again on the first extra hole.
But to be fair Noren’s 20ft-birdie putt was just brilliant, straight in the middle of the cup to win the title in Switzerland.
It’s hard to say how that defeat will affect Hend this week but I am of a mind to give him another chance. As I said he didn’t do much wrong at Crans and although he doesn’t seem to have a good record on linksy courses he can do the business. With driving accuracy of 51.7%, GIR of 68.4% and putts per round of 29.4, a small wager might be in order.
Past winner of the KLM Open, Joost Luiten, has gone off the boil a bit since a T9 at the French Open in July but seems to be getting back to where he was earlier in the season with a T33 at the USPGA and a T27 at the Olympics.
Remarkably the 30-year-old Dutchman has yet to record a win on the European Tour this season but where better a place to start than in your homeland.
His stats really hold up well with DA 62.9% (9th), GIR of 74.1% (14th) and ppr 30.00 (134th) but maybe his putting could improve slightly, otherwise looks a solid bet.
The one thing that seems to be stopping David Drysdale from getting his first win on the Tour is his putting. His ppr stat of 31.28 is nearly two strokes worse than two years ago. He is 4th on Tour in Driving Accuracy (71%) and on GIR he is 10th with 74.4%. So with those stats alone I’m going to have a small each-way wager on him.