THE European Tour returns to Scotland for the second time this year for the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship over three of the best links courses in north of the border.
The event is played over Carnoustie, Kingsbarns and the iconic St Andrews for the first three days with the final day on the Old Course.
Professionals play with amateur partners and with rounds sometimes taking up to six hours patience is of importance for the pros. As is typical on links courses coping with the wind could be a factor along with the fast greens and avoiding rough. GIR and especially putting are going to be influential at this courses.
After his showing last week at the British Masters I’m sticking with Richie Ramsay. Four sub-70 rounds, including a 65 in the third round, the Scot was not alone in not being able to live with winner Paul Dunne.
His iron play was good on Sunday but he couldn’t buy a putt although his putting figures were the best he’s had since the Irish Open. His best finish was a T2 at that tournament behind brilliant Spaniard Jon Rahm. He has also finished runner-up in this event in 2014 behind Oliver Wilson so the format is not something that affects him. Greens in regulation: 73.4 (9). Putts per round greens in regulation: 1.791 (140).
One man who seems to have got his mojo back is Tyrrell Hatton. With a T3 (European Masters) and a T8 last week, last year’s winner seems to have returned to form just in time to defend his title.
Last year Hatton equalled the St Andrews course record with a 62. Last year he showed good form on links courses with a second at the Scottish Open and a T5 in the Open Championship. Obviously when a tournament is staged over three of the top links courses in the country you want to follow good links players and Hatton certainly is that.
GIR 66.3% (140), PPGIR: 1.778 (99).
- 1.5pts ew Richie Ramsay (Coral, 50-1)
- 1.5pts ewTyrrell Hatton (Betfred, 20-1)